Santa Rosa officer fires at suspect whose umbrella was mistaken for a rifle

The officer was responding to several reports of a suspicious man who may have been pointing a gun at vehicles and bystanders.|

A Santa Rosa police officer responding to reports of a man with a gun on Saturday afternoon fired three rounds - and missed - at a man carrying an umbrella that the officer mistook for a rifle, authorities said.

The suspect was later tackled by the officer as he ran away on the city's west side, according to police. The suspect, Joshua Oceguera, was booked into the Sonoma County Jail on Saturday night on complaints of criminal threats, assault and brandishing a weapon, Lt. Dan Marincik said.

The incident began when police received seven calls from citizens around 12:30 p.m. reporting a suspicious individual near Guerneville and Fulton roads. Some of the callers said the man had a firearm and was pointing it at people and cars.

It was not clear Saturday exactly how many callers had mentioned a firearm.

The officer, who was not identified, attempted to stop the suspect on Guerneville Road west of Fulton Road, police said.

The man did not comply with the officer's orders and then displayed what the officer thought was a rifle, police said. The incident took place just outside the city limits, Marincik said.

The officer fired three shots from his department-issued AR-15 rifle but missed the suspect.

He was able to chase the man down and apprehend him, police said.

Under department protocol, the officer has been placed on administrative leave, Marincik said. The officer is expected to be questioned on Monday about the incident.

You can reach Staff Writer Bill Swindell at 707-521-5223 or On Twitter @BillSwindell.

Bill Swindell

Business, Beer and Wine, The Press Democrat  

In the North Coast, we are surrounded by hundreds of wineries along with some of the best breweries, cidermakers and distillers. These industries produce an abundance of drinks as well as good stories – and those are what I’m interested in writing. I also keep my eye on our growing cannabis industry and other agricultural crops, which have provided the backbone for our food-and-wine culture for generations.

UPDATED: Please read and follow our commenting policy:

  • This is a family newspaper, please use a kind and respectful tone.
  • No profanity, hate speech or personal attacks. No off-topic remarks.
  • No disinformation about current events.
  • We will remove any comments — or commenters — that do not follow this commenting policy.
Send a letter to the editor