Update: Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey confirmed in a news release Monday evening that the man who was fatally wounded during an exchange of gunfire with law enforcement earlier in the day was Matthew Ryan Graham, age 24, of Shasta County. Also, a paragraph in the article about the exchange of gunfire has been corrected to read: "Gunfire was exchanged between the officers and a person in the small garage. Lopey said at one point officers drew back and were not sure if the suspect had been hit. 'We requested that he come out but he refused, and there was another exchange of gunfire,' Lopey said."
A carjacking that began in Shasta Lake City Monday morning ended with the death of the carjacker in a garage on Francis Street in Dunsmuir.
Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko stated in a 2 p.m. press conference in Dunsmuir that the deceased man’s remains had not yet been positively identified. But he said the people whose car was taken identified Matthew Ryan Graham as the carjacker when they were shown a photograph of him by sheriff’s deputies.
Graham is considered a “person of interest” in the disappearance of his six month old daughter Ember on July 2 in Shasta County. Despite an extensive search by multiple agencies from several northern California counties, the infant has not been found.
Carjacking ends in gunfire
The carjacker hid in the yard of a Shasta Lake residence this morning before holding the two occupants at gunpoint and demanding the keys to their car, Bosenko said during the press conference.
A GPS device in the grey 2007 Buick Lucerne broadcast the location and direction of the car, and deputies began tracking its movement. Siskiyou County law enforcement agencies were notified that it was heading north.
A patrol from the Mount Shasta Area Highway Patrol station located the vehicle on Francis Street, off Katherine Street, in the south part of Dunsmuir.
When the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office was notified of the car’s location, Shasta and Siskiyou county deputies and the CHP established a perimeter and organized a search of the area, according to Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey.
Lopey reported that safeguarding residents was a primary concern as the officers searched the area in which the carjacker was thought to have fled on foot.
Deputies and CHP officers followed a K-9, who had gotten a scent from the carjacked vehicle, to a small garage on Francis.
Gunfire was exchanged between the officers and a person in the small garage. Lopey said at one point officers drew back and were not sure if the suspect had been hit. “We requested that he come out but he refused, and there was another exchange of gunfire,” Lopey said.
The carjacker was pronounced dead at the scene at about 7:45 a.m.
Deputies from both the Siskiyou and Shasta Sheriffs departments involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave, according to Lopey and Bosenko. An administrative investigation of the officer involved shooting will run concurrently with the criminal investigation.
Lopey said his chief deputy coroner will release the identification of the carjacker as soon as it is established.
Bosenko said until that identity can be confirmed “beyond a reasonable doubt,” Matthew Graham is considered at large, armed and dangerous, and a threat to the public.
Originally brought in for questioning regarding a violation of his probation not related to the disappearance of his daughter, Graham was released but required to wear a GPS ankle monitor. When the court ordered the monitor to be removed, the Shasta County Sheriff’s Department performed some surveillance within limited resources, Bosenko said.
Graham failed to report to his probation officer on Saturday, the same day his mother notified the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office that a handgun, cell phone, and money had been stolen from her house.
A July 11 press release stated that Graham was at large and should be considered armed and dangerous. A Ramey Warrant was issued for his arrest for charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and a felony probation order violation.