By Scott Alonso, PIO, Contra Costa County Office of the District Attorney
The Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office has concluded Richmond Police Department officers lawfully shot and killed Luc Toan Chanh Ciel in 2019. The DA’s Office released a public report about the shooting today. No charges will be filed against the officers and the Office’s criminal investigation has been concluded. The facts show that the officers had probable cause to believe that Ciel posed a significant threat of death or great bodily injury, not only to himself, but to his family. (See related article)
On April 11, 2019, at approximately 2:33 a.m., multiple Richmond officers arrived at a residence due to an urgent 911 call. Ciel broke into the residence and had weapons, including two knives, with him as he stabbed and attempted to kill three family members.
Officers arrived at the scene and entered the residence from different locations. Officer Danielle Evans and Officer Jeffrey Tyner entered from the rear of the building. They noticed broken glass on the ground and could hear yelling from inside the house. The officers found one victim with blood on her face in the first room they entered.
Officer Tyner proceeded to continue inside the house and saw Ciel with a knife standing over another victim. Ciel was in the process of attempting to stab this victim. Officer Tyner commanded Ciel to step away from the victim and drop his knife. Ciel refused to listen to the officer’s commands. Officer Tyner in turn fired his weapon three times. Officer Evans saw Ciel continue to stand up after he was hit and turned towards the officers. Officer Evans then fired her weapon once.
Officer Terrance Jackson was also inside the residence and observed Tyner and Evans engaging with Ciel. Officer Jackson fired his weapon once after Ciel turned towards his fellow officers. Officer Jackson’s shot occurred simultaneously to Officer Evans’ shot.
Officers located numerous black flex ties in Ciel’s pocket. There was also another knife in the hallway near his body. He had a knife sheath on his belt. Ciel was pronounced deceased at the scene. An autopsy performed by the Contra Costa County Coroner’s Office found Ciel suffered four gunshot wounds and one stab wound. A toxicology report was negative for the presence of any substance.
The DA’s Office and every law enforcement agency in Contra Costa County has adopted the Law Enforcement Involved Fatal Incidents Protocol (“the Protocol”) to investigate incidents when officers or civilians are shot or die during an encounter with law enforcement. Under the Protocol, the DA’s Office investigates all officer-involved shootings in Contra Costa County for the purpose of making an independent determination of criminal liability. The sole purpose of the District Attorney’s investigation is to determine if there is proof beyond a reasonable doubt that a crime was committed during a fatal encounter with law enforcement.
The OIS public report is available on our website.