Jeremy Peter Goulet, 35, reportedly shot and killed two Santa Cruz Police officers before taking their guns and stealing their car on Tuesday afternoon after they responded to a call of a domestic disturbance at a Branciforte Avenue home.
According to Santa Cruz County Sheriff Phil Wowak, speaking at a press conference Wednesday morning, Goulet was a suspect in a misdemeanor sexual assault case. He opened the door and shot the investigating officers, Det. Sgt. Loran "Butch" Baker, 51, and detective Elizabeth Butler, 38.
According to Wowak, Goulet then stole the officer's weapons before stealing Baker's car. However, he stayed in the neighborhood, where two or three teams of officers found him on foot as they did a sweep following the shooting.
One officer pushed Goulet out of the suspect's backyard to Doyle Street, where Goulet had parked Butch's car, Wowak said.
Another team met Goulet on Doyle, where he shot at officers and they returned fire, killing him. Medics, firefighters and residents all were on the street when it happened, Wowak said. Firefighters tackled residents to keep them out of harm's way.
"We know now that he was distraught. We know now that he had intentions of harming people," Wowak said.
Goulet had told people of his intentions beforehand, but police were not aware of them, Wowak said. He was wearing body armor at the time of the shooting, which Wowak said he might have stolen from Baker's car.
"Goulet was despondant, distraught" and upset about recent personal events which were angry and destructive in nature, Wowak said. "He made specific comments about being unhappy in life and that led them to believe that he was either suicidal or homicidal," Wowak said.
Goulet's father told KSBW TV that his son was 'a ticking time bomb." Goulet had been fired a week before from his job at the Kind Grind coffee shop at the Santa Cruz Harbor for making sexual advances to a co-worker in her home, the station also reported.
Wowak said that it appeared that Goulet was prepared to do greater damage with his three guns and body armor. He fired shots into a Santa Cruz Fire Department truck and firefighters raced to protect bystanders.
The officers involved prevented a much worse outcome, Wowak added.
Goulet was arrested for a misdemeanor — public intoxication — within the past week, Wowak said. He moved to Santa Cruz within the past few months. He wrote this on Facebook in November:
"I am new to santa cruz at the moment. loving the beach. wondering why I haven't been here all along. looking forward to my new life, of course remembering my old. to all of you who have been here for a while...I'll come around soon...jer ;)"
Santa Cruz Police officers are off duty until Thursday. California Highway Patrol and Santa Cruz County Sheriff's deputies are filling in.
Wowak asked for community help in documenting what happened. If community members have any photos, video or other information Wowak asked them to please share it with his office at www.scsheriff.com or by calling 454-2311.