Charges cleared against officer who shot, killed unarmed black man in Vallejo

Bay Area

VALLEJO (KRON) — Solano County DA has cleared the charges against an officer who shot and killed a black man in Vallejo back in 2018, the office announced Friday night.

“After a thorough review of the officer involved shotoing of Ronnell D. Foster of Vallejo, the Solano County District Attorney’s Office has concluded that the officer was justified in using deadly force on February 13, 2018.”

Ronnell Foster was 32 years old and a father of two when he was killed.

Police say Officer Ryan McMahon saw Foster riding his bike and weaving around. McMahon allegedly tried to stop Foster several times but said he kept riding away from him.

McMahon eventually caught up to Foster and that is when he said a struggle ensued. McMahon tried to use a taser but it didn’t work, officials say.

McMahon said Foster took his flashlight and raised it towards him, which is when he shot and killed Foster.

Foster’s family filed a federal lawsuit a month after the incident, demanding the release of the officer’s body-camera footage. The lawsuit alleged the McMahon lied about a skirmish that preceded the shooting, according to court documents. It goes on to say that Foster was followed by police for no reason and a witness never saw him struggle with McMahon before the officer opened fire, the lawsuit alleged.

“Our hearts go out to the family and loved ones of Ronnell D. Foster, who lost his life on February 13, 2018,” Solano County DA said. “We express our deepest condolences to Foster’s family during this very difficult time. our office has had the opportunity to meet with the family of Ronnell D. Foster and informed them of our decision.”

At the time, Vallejo police refused requests by Foster’s family to review body-camera footage of the shooting, according to the lawsuit.

Officials referred to the incident as a “violent physical struggle” following a brief pursuit.

In May of 2019, more than a year later, police released officer body-cam footage.

The DA said it has an ethical obligation to follow the law which is to file charges that can be proved beyond reasonable doubt. After reviewing this case, it has concluded that Officer McMahon’s use of deadly force that resulted in Foster’s death was justified.

“Now, Mr. Foster’s son and daughter will have to grow up without their father because Officer McMahon decided to play judge, jury and executioner on the streets of Vallejo,” the family’s lawyer John Burris, said in a statement.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker

Trending Stories

Latest News

More News