Expert: Wounds contradict cop’s killing claim Chico PD discloses records on Mark Bass’ slaying of ‘Gabe’ Sanchez

by Dave Waddell
posted May 11

A top expert on police use of force says a newly disclosed investigative video seems to contradict key claims made by Chico police officer Mark Bass about his killing of Eddie Gabriel “Gabe” Sanchez in 2015.

screenshot from Chico PD’s 3D video showing where Gabe Sanchez was struck by police bullets.

The video, a three-dimensional depiction of Sanchez’s fatal wounds, was released by the Chico Police Department in response to a California Public Records Act (PRA) request submitted by this reporter in November 2020.

Sanchez, 34, grew up in Paradise. He was shot to death by Bass while fleeing along Pomona Avenue in west Chico. The killing garnered little media attention, let alone scrutiny, compared with the several Chico police shootings that have followed.

Seth Stoughton, a nationally recognized expert on police practices who was a witness for the prosecution at the trial of George Floyd’s murderer, looked at the 3D video, which shows that Sanchez was shot twice in his left cheek. One bullet exited through the right side of Sanchez’s neck; the other lodged near his right eye. A third Bass shot missed Sanchez and sailed through a nearby residence that was unoccupied at the time, according to investigative reports.

Stoughton also viewed a screenshot from Bass’ videotaped interview with investigators on Nov. 10, 2015, the day of the killing. The screenshot captures Bass demonstrating how he claimed Sanchez, an armed robbery suspect, was directly facing him and aiming a pistol at him with both hands.

screenshot from Chico PD video
Mark Bass demonstrates what he alleged Sanchez did with his gun after pulling it from his waistband.

“The video you sent seems to contradict the assertion that the individual who was shot was standing in the manner Det. Bass demonstrated,” wrote Stoughton in an email reply to this reporter.

Stoughton, a former Tallahassee cop and state detective in Florida, is a professor of law at the University of South Carolina and the lead author of the book “Evaluating Police Uses of Force.”

Bass did not respond to multiple requests for comment about Stoughton’s analysis.

A detective when he killed Sanchez, Bass is now a sergeant at or near the age of retirement eligibility. After serving as a military policeman for several years, Bass joined Chico PD in the early 1990s. The killing of Gabe Sanchez was his second shooting.

On Oct. 14, 2005, Bass was one of five Chico officers who fired his pistol in the killing of Nathan Butts, 20. A commonality of the Sanchez and Butts killings was that both involved a fleeing suspect.

Bass’ Chico PD career survived multiple allegations in 2008 of verbal and physical abuse from Barbara Reed-Bass, his estranged wife at the time. In one instance, she claimed Bass pushed her down and, while pulling her hair, thrust her head several times into a laminate floor. Reed-Bass claimed she didn’t seek a domestic violence restraining order because it would have cost Bass his job as a police officer.

Reed-Bass also reported allegations that Bass shot his gun while drunk and in distress on New Year’s Eve 2008, leading to an involuntary mental health hold and a forced leave from his job, according to divorce records on file in Butte County Superior Court.

In addition to the video showing Sanchez’s wounds, also contradicting Bass’s story were the only two non-police witnesses to the killing – though their versions went missing from Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey’s speedily issued report exonerating Bass. Both witnesses told investigators Sanchez never held a gun. One claimed she watched as a police officer, after the shooting, removed Sanchez’s handgun from a holster inside his waistband and set it aside.

photo by Dave Waddell
Eddie Sanchez and his daughter, Rachel Sanchez, hold photo of Gabe Sanchez and his son near where Gabe was killed.

Detectives’ stories conflict
Detective David Bailey was partnering with Bass at the time of the killing. He was the only other officer to witness the homicide. However, Bailey’s account of Sanchez’s alleged pulling of a gun is difficult to reconcile with Bass’ description of Sanchez’s purported gun-handling.

The report authored by DA Ramsey, as well as another report written by Ramsey investigator Jon Angle, misrepresented or somehow misreported Bailey’s testimony. Ramsey’s and Angle’s reports asserted wrongly that both detectives claimed that Sanchez pointed his gun at them. Bailey never said any such thing in a videotaped interview viewed by this reporter. Neither Ramsey nor Angle responded to multiple requests for the specific time in the videotaped interview when the detective said what they claimed he said and/or an explanation for why the falsehood was in their reports.

Both Bass and Bailey told investigators they saw Sanchez pull a handgun from his waistband as he fled, but they differed markedly about what Sanchez then did with that gun. In his interview with investigators, Bass claimed Sanchez, while running away, quickly did a full 180-degree turn, put both hands on his gun and aimed it at the detectives.

“So if I understand you correctly,” investigator Bill Proffitt from the district attorney’s office said in summarizing what he thought he heard Bass telling detectives, “(Sanchez) is backpedaling away from you, but he’s facing you.”

Bailey, on the other hand, said that Sanchez, after pulling the handgun from his waistband with his right hand, then raised the gun above and to the right of his head in an “overly exaggerated” manner. Bailey, who was pointing his revolver at Sanchez when Bass fired, did not join in the shooting.

screenshot from Chico PD video
David Bailey demonstrates what he alleged Sanchez did with his gun after pulling it from his waistband.

“As (Sanchez is) pulling (the gun) out,” said Bailey while simulating the vertical lifting of a gun from his waistband with the barrel seemingly pointed down, “I hear ‘pop, pop, pop.’ As soon as I hear that, he goes down.”

When asked by investigator Proffitt where Sanchez’s gun was pointing, Bailey said, “I can’t say specifically. I don’t know. I don’t know.”

Bass was interviewed for fewer than 35 minutes by Proffitt and Angle. Stoughton, the police use of force expert, was asked for his take on both the shortness of the Bass interview and about the fact Bass was never re-interviewed about discrepancies between his story and the wounds Sanchez sustained. Nor did the investigators question Bass about statements from other witnesses that conflicted with the story he told.

“Thirty-five minutes seems a little short, but if investigators can get all of the relevant details that they need from that particular witness, there might be no reason to extend it,” Stoughton said. “I’m a little more troubled about why investigators would not re-interview a witness when, from what you describe, there were some potential discrepancies between that witness’s account and both other witnesses’ accounts and the forensic evidence. Investigators need to be very careful about their assumptions; they should not assume that someone is lying just because they aren’t an officer or that someone is telling the truth just because they are an officer.”

Neither Ramsey nor Chico City Councilman Mike O’Brien, Chico’s police chief when Sanchez was slain, responded to multiple emails asking why Bass was never questioned about Sanchez’s wounds contradicting the shooter’s claims. It was also on O’Brien’s watch that Desmond Phillips and Tyler Rushing were shot to their deaths by Chico police in 2017.

Mark Bass photographed by Chico PD after shooting

In the weeks leading up to his death, Sanchez had been staying at a residence in the 600 block of Pomona Avenue on the rural, wooded western edge of Chico. Apparently the house had been in foreclosure and had no running water. Housemates described Sanchez to investigators as a paranoid meth addict depressed about not being able to see his son.

Sanchez was suspected in two armed robberies just days earlier -– one at the Jackpot Food Mart on West Sixth Street and the other at a then-Chevron station at Nord and West Sacramento avenues. Video images from the robberies were shown in TV news reports.

“That evening, two tips were received naming Sanchez as the robber whose face could be seen,” says Ramsey’s six-page, single-spaced narrative. What Ramsey’s report doesn’t disclose was that both tips came from Sanchez’s loved ones. His mother, Mary Romero, and his brother, Daniel Sanchez, each contacted Chico PD. Family members say they alerted authorities because they wanted to stop his criminal activities and protect him from being shot by police.

“I didn’t want my son to get killed,” Romero said in a recent interview.

Romero went to the Pomona Avenue house on the day of her son’s death. Everyone was asleep, including Gabe on the couch. Romero banged on doors and windows and yelled Sanchez’s name until he came outside. They talked for about 45 minutes to an hour.

Mary Romero, Gabe’s mother.

“I begged a lot. Cried. Everything to get him to turn himself in,” Romero recalled. “I asked all the regular mother questions.”

Despite her pleadings, Romero said her son would not leave with her or hand over his small black semi-automatic handgun. When she hugged him goodbye, she said she felt the hardness of the gun at his waist. “I was afraid I’d shoot him by accident if I grabbed the gun,” she said.

Eye witness contradicts cops
At the time Bass killed Sanchez, warrants to search the Pomona Avenue residence and for his arrest still awaited the signature of a judge. At about 1:25 p.m., however, with a Chico PD SWAT team gearing up in military-like uniforms to serve the warrants, the secrecy of the police dragnet to take Sanchez into custody was blown. Two other detectives -– Joel Schmid and Dane Gregory -– were spotted approaching the rear of the residence holding assault rifles.

Schmid said in a report that Sanchez asked what they were doing. Schmid replied that they were looking for a lost child. Sanchez responded that he would go get the owner of the property and walked briskly to the front of the residence and down a 100-yard driveway toward Pomona Avenue. On that driveway, searching with her phone for an internet connection, was Keiana, 19, described by Ramsey as “a visitor from Siskiyou County” who was in a romantic relationship with another man staying at the house.

After Keiana agreed with Sanchez’s request to walk with him, he held her hand in an apparent effort to fool the police about his identity. It didn’t work. Sanchez led Keiana straight toward an unmarked police car from which Bailey and Bass emerged with guns drawn. When Sanchez saw them, he did a “pregnant pause,” Bass said, and then started running away. Bass’ bullets quickly felled Sanchez.

Keiana’s most startling revelation was that, while laying as ordered on the sidewalk, she watched an officer remove Sanchez’s gun from his holster.

The two investigators who questioned Keiana were Butte County sheriff’s detectives Chris D’Amato and Jay Freeman, serving as part of the Butte County Officer Involved Shooting (OIS)/Critical Incident Protocol Team. Neither D’Amato nor Freeman asked Keiana for a description or more details about the officer she says pulled Sanchez’s holstered gun. Scott Ruppel, a sergeant who 21 months later would shoot Tyler Rushing, wrote in a report that he retrieved the gun from beneath Sanchez’s body.

Ruppel was apparently never questioned by anyone from Ramsey’s OIS protocol team.

During questioning, Keiana lied and told investigators that she didn’t know Sanchez at all and that she hadn’t been staying at the Pomona Avenue residence. When confronted with evidence to the contrary, she indicated she lied because she was an underage teenager at a house where drinking was going on.

After the shooting, Bass described Keiana as “stone cold, just flat faced.” Bailey said her demeanor under the circumstances “was weird. She really didn’t have a whole lot of emotion. … She was, like, expressionless.”

While Ramsey’s protocol team investigators never asked Bass about discrepancies in his account of the shooting, D’Amato questioned Keiana about whether she’d had sex with Sanchez. The answer was an emphatic “no.”

At another point in the interview, seemingly trying to get a reaction out of Keiana, D’Amato suddenly asks: “You know he’s dead?”

“Ya,” Keiana replies nonchalantly.

“It should be noted,” D’Amato wrote in his report, “that (Keiana) did not express any emotion when I told her Gabriel was dead.”

Those less-than-subtle efforts by investigators to establish a relationship between Keiana and Sanchez only showed that she barely knew him. That being the case, Keiana had no apparent motive for concocting a story out of thin air about an officer taking a gun from Sanchez’s holster. Still, Ramsey and Chico PD excluded and/or discredited her account in their criminal and departmental exonerations of Bass’ deadly actions.

Second witness ‘violated’
Besides Keiana, a second non-police witness was a college student named Savannah who claimed to see “the entire incident.” It was from the parking lot of the Pomona Avenue apartment building where Savannah lived that Bass shot the fleeing Sanchez.

Savannah was first interviewed by Corinne Beck, then a lieutenant with California State University, Chico’s police force serving as a member of Ramsey’s protocol team. Ramsey bills this team as composed of experienced detectives from an array of law enforcement agencies in the county. During Ramsey’s 34-year tenure as DA, his team has yet to recommend a single criminal charge against any officer in any of three dozen killings by law enforcement personnel.

A report written by Beck says Savannah was sweeping dirt out her front door when she heard shouted commands and “looked up to see two police officers exiting (their unmarked) car. … (Savannah) said a light-skinned, possibly Hispanic, male and a younger female … were running away from police … She said the female looked scared and dropped immediately to the ground … She said the male threw his hands up and continued running away from officers. …

“(Savannah) said the male had his hands up and she did not see a gun in his hands. She said she was 87 to 89% sure he did not have a gun,” says Beck’s report.

Savannah’s view of Sanchez as he fled was at times obscured by a pickup truck parked in front of her residence.

A couple of days later, two investigators from Ramsey’s office, Lt. Juan Diaz and Jason Barkley, re-interviewed Savannah. A recording of that interview was not released until last month by Chico PD – some 18 months after it was originally requested under this reporter’s PRA request. Savannah told the Sanchezes – in an interview they recorded – that she wasn’t told the second interview was being audio recorded and didn’t realize it until Diaz and Barkley made a point of turning off their recorder before allowing her to ask any questions.

The interview began with Savannah venting for a couple of minutes about being physically and verbally accosted by a female Chico police officer as she attempted to exit the area after the shooting as directed by two other cops. “She totally violated me,” Savannah said.

Diaz responded that Savannah needed to understand “the totality of the circumstances and how everyone’s a little amped up.”

Barkley wrote what was described as a summary of the interview. Following are among Savannah’s more impassioned comments, all of which were excluded from Barkley’s report:

–“Everybody was telling me it was like a gun fight … I’m like: ‘No. No.’ (Sanchez) may have had a gun on him, (but) as far as I saw he wasn’t holding a gun. He wasn’t shooting. He was just running.”

–“Five seconds after (Bass) got out of the car, he started shooting. He didn’t even run after him. … I know I saw both hands and (Sanchez) didn’t have a gun. …”

–“(Bass) got out, took four fast steps, then shot, shot, shot … Why didn’t (Bass) tase or tackle him? … Why did he shoot? He could have just got him. (Sanchez) was so close. Holy shit, he just shot someone?”

Instead of quoting such remarks, Barkley claimed Savannah agreed with his suggestion that Sanchez did not throw up his hands so much as throw them out. Without discussing it with Savannah, Barkley speculated in his report that Sanchez -– after being shot in the head twice with hollow-point police bullets — was trying to “brace himself” while falling. Another possibility was that Sanchez was trying to show his hands while sprinting away.

Savannah told the Sanchezes that after the shooting “a huge army tank with army men” swarmed Pomona Avenue armed with assault rifles and assorted weaponry. A helicopter hovered overhead.

“It was ridiculous,” said Savannah, pronouncing the final word in carefully differentiated syllables.

Bass ‘freaked out’
In separate recorded interviews, Keiana, Savannah and Bailey all commented about Bass’ agitated demeanor after the shooting.

“The guy who shot him was in shock,” Keiana told investigators. “He freaked out a little bit.”

“He just kept yelling after (the shooting),” Savannah told Sanchez family members in a recorded interview. “He was freaking out.”

Bailey described Bass as “amped up,” holding out his hands and demonstrating for investigators how Bass’ hands were shaking considerably.

Mark Bass’ hands as photographed after shooting

“Mark, stay back!” from Sanchez’s body, Bailey said he ordered Bass before other officers arrived. After Bass helped Sgt. Ruppel handcuff Sanchez, “I pulled Mark away,” Bailey said.

Bass told investigators that after he shot Sanchez, “I panicked a little bit because I couldn’t see him” momentarily behind a short fence that Bass had fired over.

“I really thought he was playing opossum,” Bass said. “I didn’t see the gun anywhere (and thought) maybe it was tucked up in his hand. I remember saying, ‘This is not a good day to do this. Show me your hands!’ At that point I was just expecting him to jump up and try to shoot us again.”

Bailey also said he didn’t see a gun fly away when Sanchez was shot and assumed it was under him somewhere. Bailey said the prone Sanchez was bleeding profusely from the mouth.

Suit dismissed ‘without prejudice’
Gabe Sanchez had a son who was 10 years old at his death and will turn 17 next month. Gabe’s father, Eddie Sanchez of Paradise, filed a lawsuit on behalf of his grandson against Bass and Chico PD. Eventually, Eddie Sanchez and his attorneys parted company, and he was unable to obtain other counsel. In late 2020, Judge Troy Nunley of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, while expressing sympathy for the Sanchezes’ situation, dismissed the suit “without prejudice,” a phrasing that typically allows plaintiffs to sue again. Nunley indicated that state law may or may not give Gabe’s son the right to sue once he reaches 18, the age of majority in California.

The lawsuit alleged that Chico PD failed to address “past complaints of grossly improper conduct” by Bass, “establishing he was unfit to be a police officer.”

A letter written in 2019, 3½ years after the killing, by Amanda Eldridge, the single mother of Gabe Sanchez’s son, became part of the court record. In it, she claimed Bass had a checkered history as a police officer and accused him of stereotyping Sanchez and “recklessly” killing him.

“This was not a decorated officer that held himself to the standards of justice,” Eldridge wrote. “This was a man who publicly posted himself on social media partying (in) the days immediately after he shot and killed a man, and left a boy without his father.”

Eddie Sanchez also recalled Bass’ social media posts shortly after the shooting. “If I killed someone, I’d be home crying,” said Eddie, who added that the posts were taken down by Bass shortly after he mentioned them to Ramsey.

Eldridge claimed Sanchez was working hard to overcome his past and be a good father.

“Gabe was not known to his son as a deviant,” Eldridge wrote. “He was known to his child as a loving, playful and caring father. … Gabe was working so hard to bring up his son … as a strong man that never would have to know the struggles of the violent world that Gabe had been exposed to.”

Crime not Sanchez’s forte
Gabe Sanchez’s family members said his criminal activities were rooted in a chronic drinking problem. Family members say Sanchez, who grew up in Paradise, was never a violent person. He began having run-ins with law enforcement at age 14, but the offenses were all misdemeanors or infractions ranging from petty theft to DUI to vandalism to showing false ID to police. In 2014, the year before his death, Gabe Sanchez got off probation for the first time in many years and was trying to turn his life around, according to his sister, Rachel Sanchez of Paradise.

“He was not like this big druggie, like they said,” Rachel said.

Eddie Sanchez said his son was “a follower, not a leader.” Gabe always thought he could evade arrest by fleeing because he never thought the police would shoot him while running away, his father said.

“He was a runner,” Eddie said.

Rachel Sanchez said it was just in the last “few months, maybe a year,” of her brother’s life that he added an addiction to smoking methamphetamine to his drinking problems. Authorities said tests after his death showed he was under the influence of methamphetamine and had a blood alcohol content of .14, or nearly twice the legal limit of .08 for driving a vehicle in California. Romero, Sanchez’s mother, believes he matriculated from petty crime to armed robbery because he was hungry.

In one incident about a month before he was killed, Sanchez left his cell phone behind while stealing designer jeans from a store. At an armed robbery, he was easily identifiable after adjusting the hoodie he was wearing. Sanchez family members said Ramsey told them that at one robbery Sanchez exhibited a politeness the DA had never encountered before, telling the clerk to “Give me the money, please.”

When a reporter suggested that Gabe Sanchez was really bad at being a criminal, Romero said: “You have my son pegged.”

Dave Waddell, a contributor to ChicoSol, is writing a book about law enforcement killings in Butte County. He has filed a lawsuit against the City of Chico related to public records access.

47 thoughts on “Expert: Wounds contradict cop’s killing claim Chico PD discloses records on Mark Bass’ slaying of ‘Gabe’ Sanchez

  1. About time the real facts come to light. Why does it take so much investigating from Mr. Waddell to get the TRUTH. Why do we continueally allow the lieing bastard Ramsey to get away with this?

    Thank you Dave. Your efforts and tenacity do not go un noticed. You are appreciated. I just wish more people would stop believing lies and cover ups.

  2. Let me see: Spousal abuse, mental health problems, the previous questionable shooting of Nathan Butts, God knows what else and he is PROMOTED by Chico PD? Hired to teach by Butte College? Sgt Scott Ruppel, ALSO involved in the shooting of Nathan Butts and then promoted, who then goes on to murder Tyler Rushing and attempt to choke a restrained suspect, is involved in possible placing of a gun to try to justify this shooting? Evidence disappears from DA Ramsey’s office again? And DA Ramsey just lets the cops play soldiers in the Chico streets. Nothing to see here, Chico PD. Monsters.

  3. It is time for the Attorney General to investigate the policies and procedures of District Attorney Michael Lee Ramsey and his colleagues in Butte County law enforcement. The local media appears reluctant to publish any articles that show the DA or police in an unfavorable light. This article reveals the disturbing truth about the culture of Chico PD. “No comment” responses from Ramsey and other “higher-ups” only confirms the evidence. Is the Chico City Council condoning misleading and inaccurate investigations of officers and investigators? Thank you, Dave Waddell.

    1. I would agree, Ramsey seems to always to side with Law Enforcement in these investigations of officer involved shootings. The fact that all of the subjects involved were not extensively re-interviewed after multiple discrepancies were identified is very concerning.

      1. Ramsey filed manslaughter charges, leading to a conviction, against former Paradise Police Department officer Patrick Feaster after the victim Andrew Thomas died from a bullet fired by Feaster. Prior to Andrew Thomas’ painful death from being shot through the neck and spine by Feaster DA Ramsey called Feaster’s use of lethal force “textbook” and fully exonerated Feaster. Feaster served 60 days in Lassen County jail for the killing of Andrew Thomas. Does it look like the DA was protecting the killer, officer Feaster? You can decide.

      2. Trite the County Board Of Supervisors and demand they ask Ramsey to justify his actions/exonerations/practices to them AND the public.

  4. I have had multiple experiences with Sergeant Bass and completely agree that he should not be allowed to be a police officer. His behavior and comments have always alarmed me and my family. We have tried to express this to the department however we have only gotten pushback and coverup. If he is allowed to continue as an officer another innocent persons life will be taken by his hands. Thank you for your hard work and for publishing this.

  5. My cousin was a caring compassionate person even though we were far he always took the time to check on us .. All I can say is we need justice . I know we can’t bring him back but justice for his son because I know how it feels to have a child without a father. All he cared about was his son always showing us pictures bringing him over to my parents house it was a bond like you can’t imagine .We need the police officer that lied to cover his tracks accused for the killing of my cousin Gab . Then they say why people don’t trust police officers but aren’t they here to help instead of hurting people that need help .. How can a person live on a daily basis thinking they killed a man that could’ve been saved .. JUSTICE FOR GABRIEL SANCHEZ.. We miss him dearly..

  6. The dark is coming to light Ramsey is on video in several different OIS MURDERS Lieing coaching his killer kops 2 lie we need the DOJ Office 2 open an investigation on the Federal level into BUTTE COUNTY AS A WHOLE STARTING WITH RAMSEY. DAVE WADDELL CHICOSOL THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU ARE DOING TO EXPOSE THE CORRUPTION HERE IN BUTTE COUNTY AND D.A.OFFICE AND LAW ENFORCEMENT.

  7. Justice for my dear cousin Gabe Sanchez. This so called police officer needs to be investigated and be off the streets so another person doesn’t loose their life.

  8. It’s really scary to me that this cop, Bass, had mental health issues and is still on the police force.

    And shame on District Attorney Mike Ramsey for protecting cops that kill people.

    Great reporting, Dave Waddell and ChicoSol. Be safe.

    Thank you!

  9. Dave Waddell exposes in graphic detail yet another unnecessary killing by Chico PD and blatant cover-up by DA Ramsey. This is the fourth article by Waddell describing heartbreaking use of force ending in the loss of yet another young man here in the “quiet, peaceful” town of Chico. We haven’t heard yet from Waddell about the death of Stephen Vest, but I suspect there is a similar story there waiting to be told of inept and cruel use of force and cover-up by Ramsey. And, damn, he is up for re-election once again – unopposed! So sad and sick. Yes, California Attorney General Bonta should investigate Ramsey and Chico PD for these multiple lethal abuses of power and manipulation of evidence.

  10. #JusticeforGabeSanchez

    District Attorney Mike Ramsey, you failed your community. How can you continue to live your life without any remorse? Corrupted cops and DA’s should not be held on a different pedestal than civilians.

    Ramsey, Bass, and Bailey, your negligence and dirtiness took my cousin’s life away, and you need to be held accountable. You ended his life too short, and I held you personally responsible that we no longer see his smile. You left a kid without a father, a father and mother without a son, friends without a friend, a sister and brother without a sibling, and many cousins without a cousin. You made our Holidays and special events less special. How do you sleep at night? Or maybe they’re many others under your belt that you became numb?

    How dare you think that you are above the law? How dare you lie? As civilians, we put our trust in the law’s hands to serve and protect us, never imagining police misconduct or a civil rights violation. It’s your fault civilians lose faith in this so-called justice system and how those rotten apples ruin future police encounters for us all. You did my family dirty.

    Your corruption needs to be punished to the full extent of the law.

  11. The Butte County D.A. has been in office over 35 years, the longest running D.A. in the nation. The police force in this county are protected by a robust police union & a very cozy relationship with the County D.A.. It’s a racket.
    Rio Act Violations? I believe so. We need a Federal Investigation that seriously does some “looking into” the practices of retired Police Chief O’Brien who left L.A. Country Sheriff’s Department after the Rodney King Riots.

  12. #JusticeforGabeSanchez
    Thank you Dave Waddell. Excellent job at getting the information out to the people. I truly believe this may save someone’s life. If we can get these dirty cops off the street.
    Ephesians 5:13 —
    13 But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.
    Luke 8:17
    17 For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.

  13. #JusticeforGabeSanchez

    We are finally relieved to see that the public can read and learn the truth about what we have known for years! It had been 5.5 years since the killing of our boy, Gabe Sanchez. It has been a blessing that David Waddell took the time to investigate the records to shine a light on the truth for the public to see. He is again exposing dirty law enforcement in Butte County, both in the Chico police and the Butte County DA.

    The government has fallen short. The system of justice has failed in Butte County. There was not a reasonable investigation into our son’s death and there was an obvious cover-up by the officers involved, the then Chief of Police Mike O’Brien and then DA Mike Ramsey. The system of justice in Chico has not just failed us, but many others as well, in the police killings of Desmond Phillips, Tyler Rushing, Stephen Vest and others. It is so painful to think that others have or may have to go through the same loss as we have.

    In Butte County, DA Michael Ramsey backs up every single cop, no matter what they do or who they kill. The DA should be responsible to the members of the community not to the police establishment. We cannot turn a blind eye to the truth that DA Michael Ramsey is dirty and Sergeant (now) Mark Bass is dirty. Most of us would not have a job if we made such mistakes at our jobs. Mark Bass and David Bailey should tell the truth and Mark Bass should admit that his actions were unjustified. Police are not above the law, they are supposed to protect and not destroy. In reality, the police work for the public and are here to protect us. Taxpayers pay for the government to protect us and not to destroy us. The taxpayers’ money should not be used to kill us.

    Almost 6 years may seem like a long time to some to be looking into this unjustified shooting but to the mother and father, the grief is just like it happened yesterday. Taking our boy Gabe Sanchez from us in this way, and from his siblings and his son, was unconscionable. The reporting after his death also included lies. Many things were said by law enforcement to justify his killing. Our son Gabe Sanchez had problems and he needed help, but he did not deserve to die. He did not deserve to be shot in the head.
    It takes a decent man to take responsibility and admit wrongdoing, which will not occur in this case. The Chico City Council needs to investigate the facts as outlined by the Chico PD, since there are many other questionable inconsistencies that are not outlined in the article, such as when Mark Bass shot our son Gabe Sanchez he was quickly dragged ~75 feet from where he was killed, therefore the evidence of the scene was tampered with. Dirty officers like Mark Bass should be terminated by Chico PD because of the unjustified killing of our son Gabe Sanchez. Also an investigation should occur by the state Attorney General into DA Mike Ramsey for his erroneous report.

    1. I am aware of other unethical behavior by DA Ramsey. I am dumbfounded that there was no other candidate running in the recent June primary! We can’t remove him if we don’t remove him!

    2. I so sorry this has taken so long to be addressed and I can’t imagine the heartache you are all feeling. With the new documents received by Dave Waddell and his writings, I truly hope these police shooting cases get the attention of the state AG. Time for any cover-ups to be uncovered!

  14. Having witnessing the BCSO lie in court on just traffic infractions. Tells me there is nothing they will not do to be right – telling a judge that they were lying with the judge accepting the deputies” statement as fact with no evidence saying she knows and trusts the deputy, tells me they are all crooked, and protecting each other. Ramsey is the worst of them.

  15. I don’t know what happened that day because I wasn’t there but evidence shows he was murdered by a careless cop who should not wear a badge. My cousin Gabriel was far from an angel but he was a caring and loving man who always thought of others before himself and I miss him everyday and he was taken from us way too early. Bass needs to be held accountable for this murder and district attorney Mike Ramsey needs to be investigated for his mishandling of so many cases not just this one. Justice for Gabe.

  16. #justiceforgabesanchez

    I am saddened and frustrated to read of yet another incident that further propagates fear and distrust in a system that was designed to protect and serve the public. These abuses are the worst kind because they cause irreparable damage. If we cannot trust our leaders (DA) and officers then they should be fired not promoted or sent on to different positions of leadership. This is a clear example of “ those who can’t. . . teach”. I see this as deplorable as putting pedophiles in charge of children.

  17. #JusticeforGabeSanchez

    I am relieved that this story is finally getting the attention it needed from day one. Frankly, nothing about Bass reads as someone you would want to keep as an officer LET ALONE to promote him to a higher position! As a previous comment also pointed out: spousal abuse, mental health problems, and the questionable shooting of Nathan Butts. None of those inspire confidence as a man who can be trusted to protect others and make good decisions.
    This also calls into question the then Chief of Police Mike O’Brien and then DA Mike Ramsey. Shame on you all and shame on the system for being as clearly corrupt as it is. You are supposed to be protecting the community and instead you are killing innocents and promoting the monsters you should be protecting us from. It is clear that the best interest of the public is not the mission at the forefront of the Chico PD. Remove this man, this monster, from his position immediately.

    I pray for justice on behalf of my friends Eddie, Daniel, and their whole family.

  18. The loss of a child can never be erased from our memory. I do not know of a greater loss.

    For the Sanchez family, I pray for peace.

    For our government, I pray they will do the right thing.

  19. Mark Bass need to be held accountable for his actions. My son was no angel but he didn’t deserve to be murdered. Please help us get justice for my son and the other men and women that are killed unjustified by law enforcement under Mike Ramsey watch.

  20. It would be nice to see crooked police be held accountable for their actions. Gabe may have got himself into trouble but the evidence clearly shows he was killed in vain. He was still a human at the end of the day. We need to look into these police officers that ruining the reputation of good police officers. This whole situation with Ramsey needs to be looked at deeper something is not adding up.
    Justice for Gabe.

  21. This man was no angel. He embarked in the life of crime. We have laws in this country and we have a process to punish and rehabilitate those that have broken the law. We have many good/brave police in our country. Then we have some that are either over zealous or perhaps even racist. It does not appear that this man brandished a weapon, although he had one on his person. This person was not awarded the right given to every U.S. Citizen. That is the right to a fair trial. The cop that killed him became prosecutor, judge, jury, and executioner. This man will never receive a trial of his peers for the crimes he committed. As long as D.A. Ramsey has been in charge, there has been little to no effort to hold cops accountable. In every state we have cops prosecuted for wrong doing. Butte County seems to be an exception to the rule. Either every cop ever hired has never broken the law, or more likely, was never held accountable for their actions. This case needs to be re-opened and all evidence considered. Just like we need to keep criminals off the street, we need to keep bad cops off the street. I am not saying this cop is guilty of anything, but I am saying that the case needs to be reconsidered.

  22. I read with focused mind about how Police Officer Mark Bass could possibly with a clear conscious concoct such a cockamamie story about his outright killing of Gabriel Sanchez when an expert Seth Stoughton clearly showed that Bass’s testimony was 180 degrees from the truth on just how the path of his 2 bullets traveled and how they struck Mr. Sanchez killing him instantly!

    In addition why was a third shot fired and for Gods sake why even the first two! He was only apprehending a suspect in a robbery, not someone in the act of a robbery or brandishing a weapon aimed at him and threatening his life.

    Then sometime lager an act of violence performed on his own spouse confirmed his instability and the total inappropriateness to be wearing a servant of the public police uniform.

    Hopefully this case can be reopened and justice served rather than swept under the rug.

    In disgust,

  23. I am appalled at the irresponsible, unaccoutable actions with a total disregard to diligent Detective work. All levels of our Police Department must be accountable to each other to uphold integrity. Without accountability we can expect Anarchy and Corruption. I take comfort that God will judge on day and make all things right!

  24. A Mother to a Mother justice’s still to be done here but our love ones are gone and not goin to camback they’re in our hearts and always going to missing them in a good sense they touch our lives with little things to show the love, appreciation, to you. To a friend of my family miss you Gaby

  25. This is an absolute travesty. There’s no way that officer should be allowed to continue his involvement with police work. He needs to be held accountable for his crimes. I know Gabe’s father and he deserves some real answers and closure.

  26. There is no doubt that some police stereotype and especially in small communities’ where everyone knows each other. After reading all facts in this case , it sounds like the Cop Bass is being protected by his own and up the food chain as well . That is the problem with small communities . He needs to be suppendared and brought to justice, to answer for all of his Questionable Career, Based on his record . The Sanchez Shooting Stinks he needs to be made accountable.

  27. Thank you, Mr. Waddell, for building a fire of facts, and exposure under the unjustifiable shooting and coverup of Gabe Sanchez.
    The previous comments, detail the shameful history of the abuse and cover up within the Butte County Law Enforcement, under leadership Lee Ramsey, who has held many different positions and levels of lawful authority in Butte County.
    I lived in Paradise and Magalia for 13 years and I rarely heard a good word about Ramsey. I always wondered how he was elected and appointed to the Offices he held?
    I pray this investigation not only brings truth and justice to Gabe and his family, but to the other unwarranted deaths in the past and new policy’s created and implemented for the future.

  28. Finally the truth about the cop who took a man away from his family and purposely left a little boy to grow up without a father

    Anyone who knew Gabe knew he loved his son more than anything. Yes, Gabe had issues that he was fighting with just like most people. Maybe not the same as you or me but he had struggles in his life and he needed help, he deserved help.
    He didn’t deserve to be shot and murdered.

    The police officer took justice into his own hands. He decided he didn’t like gabe and the city was better off without him but that should not have been that officers choice.
    The police officer himself has a violent record on and off of duty.

    this officer should have been off the force long ago, if he was Gabe would no doubt still be alive.

  29. I just wish it wasn’t so hard to get to the bottom of this thread to comment! Truth always prevails. God wins. God knows all. He knows that whatever Gabe was going through, he was not deserving of death. Bass and the shifty Ramsey are both responsible for these unnecessary shootings. I have spoken to police offers. They go through vigorous training and learn community policing techniques to solve problems without violence. They are also trained to deal with those who may be at high risk behaviors. Shame shame shame on these officers who get to be above the law. Why has Ramsey been serving so long? Does Butte County also participate in the SWAMP of corruption? When will people step up to recall Ramsey, prosecute killer cops and run for D.A.? I am not related to the victim. I am however, a staunch supporter of our Constitutional right to due process. Gabe could have easily been spared the death sentence he received, so unjustified!

  30. After reading this article it’s very upsetting that our Police force are above the law with Ramsey backing them. We as the people need to change this before more lives are taken. Everyone has the right to a trial in the court of law, as citizens of the United States. I pray officer Bass is held responsible for his actions in taking a life. When it was clearly unacceptable to take such actions as he did.

  31. I find it hard to believe that the differences in his testimony didn’t call for further investigation . Ramsey is a joke , killer cops should be made examples of.

  32. Mike Ramsey needs to hold his Police men accountable for their actions. Mark Bass is clearly an unstable man with many issues. Thank you Dave Waddell for bringing this to us the people attention. We need to put a stop to this. #JUSTICE4GABE

  33. Gabe needs justice for his wrongful killing.
    When I first heard what happened, I couldn’t imagine the Gabe I knew and loved would have pulled a gun towards a police officer.
    The Gabe I knew always had a beautiful smile and a sweet kiss on my cheek for his Aunt Gloria.
    I recognized manic depressive tendancies in him and I believe his drinking was a form of trying to self medicate durring his bottom low. I was married to a man who exhibited these same issues and he used to tell me he only drank to not feel the pain. He no longer has to feel that pain.
    Gabe was always a good and kind kid, but as the saying goes “the bad corrupts the good”.
    After reading this report I’m convinced that Gabe has not received justice.
    I miss his engaging smile and sweet kiss on my cheek.
    Thank you, I know you will do what’s right and give Gabe the justice he deserves.

  34. I think it’s pretty obvious that Bass needs to be investigated.. domestic violence, discharge of a firearm while intoxicated & two fatal shootings,one with suspicious sercumstances show what this man’s go to is in a stressful situation! Officers of the law are supposed to be held to a higher standard & not protected by higher ups when breaking the law & ruining lives!

  35. Knowing some of Gabriel Sanchez’s family members, I know how devastated they were when Gabe was shot by the Chico police. It’s Heartbreaking. After reading the articles about the shooting I feel sick and at a loss for words to express my feelings. I’m encouraged to hear that Dave Waddell is shedding light on this case and have hope that justice will be served and those that think shooting 1st is how to best serve and protect the community, will no longer be in a position to do so.There are many ways this situation and the many others I’ve read about in the Chico area could have been handled differently and had far better results for all concerned. Once you’ve killed someone all hope is lost. Thanks to Mr. Waddell and all who are working to see that these tragedies don’t continue happening. Thanks…

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