Merced County Sheriff's Office investigating deadly officer involved shooting
After being told his pickup was going to be towed following a traffic stop, authorities say a man fled from police just past on Wednesday.
"The driver of this pickup started the vehicle and took off and the pursuit was on," said Merced County Sheriff Mark Pazin.
Pazin says another Ceres Police Officer joined the chase along with two Highway Patrol Officers traveling in the same vehicle.
"The driver of this pickup then veered off into the median entering the northbound highway 99 lanes," said Pazin.
That's when police say he sped up the Sultana on ramp going the wrong way and careened off the side.
“And this is where this investigation is preliminary, we don't actually know if the officers struck this person or if this John Doe put the weapon to his head and discharged it thereby committing suicide," said Pazin.
Sheriff Pazin says the man, whose name has yet to be released, pulled out a long rifle and that's when three of the four officers opened fire. But it is still unknown if the fatal shot was fired by the police or if it was self inflicted.