What We Know About the Deputy Shootout That Killed a Fontana Teen
A teenager who was killed during a shootout between her father and San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies last week was likely unarmed, according to a preliminary investigation by the Sheriff's Department.
Fifteen-year-old Savannah Graziano was reportedly kidnapped by her father, Anthony Graziano, on September 25 shortly after he killed her mother. An Amber Alert had been issued for the teen.
Sheriff’s deputies responded to a 911 call the next day from someone who spotted Anthony Graziano’s white pickup truck. A chase ensued and Anthony Graziano exchanged gunfire with deputies.
According to deputies, Savannah was shot when she exited the vehicle and ran toward them while wearing protective gear and a tactical helmet. Her father was also killed during the altercation.
SBSD detectives say they are no longer sure if Savannah was a kidnapping victim or if she had gone with her father willingly. Sheriff Shannon Dicus has said “evidence suggests that Savannah was also a participant in shooting at our deputies,” but has not provided evidence to support that claim.
SBSD has faced criticism for its actions and statements. According to the San Bernardino Sun, the sheriff’s deputies involved in the shooting weren’t wearing body cameras at the time. Sheriff Dicus had assured the public that body cams would be deployed department-wide by now.
Per the provisions of AB 1506, the sheriff’s department has now been pulled from the investigation. The case is being handled by the California Department of Justice.