White supremacist gang member killed in shootout with police in California

Daisy Lester
·1-min read
Investigators work the scene of a shooting, Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020 in Templeton, California  (SLO County Sheriff/The Tribune)
Investigators work the scene of a shooting, Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020 in Templeton, California (SLO County Sheriff/The Tribune)

A known member of a white supremacist gang was killed in a shootout with police deputies in California on Thursday morning.

According to the San Luis Obispo Sheriff’s office, the shootout occurred in a cemetery in Templeton, California.

The suspect Christopher Michael Straub, 38, had significant criminal history and had served 28 jail times around California including two incarcerations in state prison.

A criminal investigation had already been initiated by the Sheriff’s gang task force when this incident occurred.

According to the police, they first tried to conduct a traffic stop before Straub exited his vehicle and ran into the nearby cemetery.

The suspect hid and ambushed the deputies, firing multiple rounds and continuing to evade before additional officiers arrived and were able to intercept him.

The police say multiple weapons were discovered in Straub’s vehicle, including four assault rifles, a shotgun and handgun.

A search warrant was then initiated on his residence where it was discovered that Straub has been illegally manufacturing parts for weapons.

“Straub was a wanted felon and it is illegal for felons to possess weapons,” the Sheriff’s Office said.

The deputy wounded in the altercation has been identified as Richard “Ted” Lehnoff, 34, who was airlifted to hospital where he underwent surgery on a leg injury.

He remains in a stable condition while investigation into the suspect continues.

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