Steven Carrillo Arrested for the Death of Santa Cruz Deputy Gutzwiller and Other Charges

Written by Tasia Lundberg (News Editor)

In only an eight-day span, Steven Carrillo, who at the time was a  current Air Force Sergeant of the Travis Air Force Base and a resident of Ben Lomond, fatally shot a federal security officer David Underwood and wounded his partner.  Within a week, Carrillo ambushed a Santa Cruz deputies home, opening fire with a AR-15, killing  Santa Cruz Deputy Damon Gutzwiller, severely injuring a second deputy, and shot another officer, trying to make an escape by trying to carjack a getaway car.  However, he was detained by a local resident and arrested the same day. 

This tragedy began with a simple Facebook group associated with the Boogaloo boys, a far-right extremist, anti-government movement. Within a day of meeting this group, Steven Carrillo met up with Robert Justus, a man associated with the Boogaloo movement and they made their journey in Carrillo’s white van and arrived in Oakland where the murder of Underwood took place in the Ron V. Dellums Federal Building. Allegedly they tried to use the protests over George Floyds murder as cover and used an AR-15 to get the job done.

The second murder took place in Ben Lomond, using the same AR-15, along with pipe-bombs attacking Gutzwiller directly, unfortunately, Gutzwiller did not make it, however, Steven Carrillo was caught. And a day after he was arrested, Justus turned himself into the FBI, claiming that the whole attack was Carrillo’s plan, and he was not willing to participate at first.

Carillo’s is facing 19 counts of felonies in connection to Gutzwiller’s death and is monitored 24 hours with suicide watch. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges, but is eligible for receiving the death penalty. There have been no current updates of his sentence.

The Boogaloo boys are described as a militia which wants to wage Civil war and calls for an uprising of violence. Carrillo is an example of a former SLVHS student who committed heinous crimes. There has been no information about what he was like in SLV since it was years back, but some teachers were glad to know they did not have him/ did not remember him.

What happened to these officers was a tragedy, but luckily the alleged perpetrators are facing trials and charges. Make sure to watch out for any potential sketchy Facebook groups, and report any suspicious activity or Boogaloo boys.

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