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Juan Carlos Ruelas, 34
Sunnyvale, California
September 04, 2013

Agencies: Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety California | Santa Clara Police Department California

Last updated: 8 months ago

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A Sunnyvale police report said a man was struck by multiple bullets when six undercover drug agents opened fire during a sting operation. Juan Ruelas died after the Sept. 4 shooting outside the Hobee’s restaurant on the corner of North Mathilda and West Ahwanee avenues. The report said Ruelas, who was being investigated by the Santa Clara Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration, verbally threatened an undercover officer during a methamphetamine transaction in a parking lot. The report said Ruelas then made a movement that led the officer to believe he was reaching for a gun. He was then shot multiple times by the six officers who fired their weapons. No gun was found on Ruelas or in the truck where he was shot.

But in a suit filed Friday in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, Ruelas’ family said, “Despite Mr. Ruelas posing no threat to anyone, several of the officers/deputies unlawfully repeatedly shot the unarmed man in broad daylight.”

The officers ordered Ruelas out of his truck, and the wounded man complied, the suit said. The law-enforcement officers then “inexplicably unleashed a second unnecessary barrage of gunfire at Mr. Ruelas,” the complaint said.

Legal Action Help icon

May 2014 Lawsuit filed

September 2014 Officers cleared