SAN DIEGO — A narcotics suspect fatally shot on Friday by deputies trying to arrest him at a North County apartment complex was unarmed, sheriff’s officials said Monday.
Michael Paul Napier, 33, was inside a garage in the 2000 block of South Melrose Drive in Vista when a sheriff’s gang-enforcement team confronted him shortly before 6:30 p.m. Friday, Lt. Glenn Giannantonio said.
Deputies went to the home to take Napier into custody on a felony drug warrant. He was also a suspect in two recent burglaries. When officers told him to show his hands, he instead moved both of them toward his waistband, according to Giannantonio.
“The deputies were aware Napier was a documented gang member with a history of possessing firearms,” Giannantonio said.
Fearing that the suspect was reaching for a gun, Deputies Brandon Boisseranc and Nicholas Danza opened fire. Napier died at the scene despite life-saving efforts on the part of the sheriff’s personnel and paramedics.
“After the shooting, it was determined that Napier did not have a weapon on him, although there was a knife stuck in the garage wall next to where he was standing,” Giannantonio said. “A search of the garage yielded stolen property from at least one residential burglary and one vehicle burglary.”
Boisseranc has been with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department for six years, and Danza for seven.