The shooting took place on Thursday morning when MPs initially tried to stop Christopher Michael Straub, 38, near a cemetery. Straub got out of his vehicle and ran through the vineyards of the cemetery.
Then he went into hiding and ambushed the MPs, firing several shots at them with a pistol. Deputy Richard “Ted” Lehnhoff, 34, was hit in the leg and flown to a local hospital, where he had an operation and is in stable condition.
Straub continued to evade MPs and tried to return to his vehicle through the vineyard, but more MPs arrived on site and intercepted him as he tried to regain access to his vehicle.
Straub was later pronounced dead at the scene, according to the sheriff̵
After the shooting, authorities found several weapons in Straub’s vehicle, including four assault rifles, a bolt-action rifle, a shotgun and two handguns, as well as the pistol he used to shoot MPs and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
The authorities ransacked Straub’s home and found that he was illegally manufacturing weapon parts.
“Straub was a wanted criminal and it is illegal for criminals to own guns,” said the sheriff’s office.
The sheriff’s office said Straub was a known member of a white gang of supremacists and the sheriff’s gang task force had been investigating Thursday’s shooting.
Straub “had a significant criminal history, recorded 28 times in prisons across California, including two state jail sentences,” the sheriff’s office said on the release.
Templeton is about 114 miles west of Bakersfield.