On Wednesday, April 29 around 2:30 in the afternoon, Sonoma County Sheriff’s Deputies were called out to the Fife Creek Commons apartments on reports of a man acting irrationally and threatening neighbors with a knife.
Fife Creek Commons is an affordable housing project that opened in 2012 in Guerneville in an effort to bring affordable and assisted housing to the county. There are 48 units, half of which have been designated for individuals and families with special needs related to homelessness, mental illness, HIV, or similar issues. The property features open space between structures, a community room, laundry facilities, child and youth areas, and offices for supportive service providers.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, the responding deputies were told that the man they sought was 46-year-old Jeffrey Singleton, and that he had two young children with him in his apartment. They contacted him and tried to get him to speak with them, but he refused. He was on his balcony overlooking the deputies as they tried to convince him to come down, but he instead went back into the apartment.
He soon emerged from the apartment, this time with a firearm. The Press Democrat reported that, according to Lieutenant Danny Fish of the Petaluma Police, Singleton was carrying a shotgun, which he cocked and pointed toward the deputies. One of them responded by firing his service weapon at Singleton several times, striking him at least once. He was hit in the shoulder, and transported to the Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital for treatment of what were determined to be non-life-threatening wounds, and placed into intensive care.
Further investigation revealed that the shotgun was not loaded when he brandished it, despite the sound the pump action made before he pointed it in the deputies’ direction. Per the county’s critical incident protocol, the three deputies were placed on paid administrative leave, and the investigation into the shooting has been taken over by Petaluma Police Department detectives.
Records show that Singleton was arrested just a few months prior to this incident, on January 22 in Guerneville just a couple blocks from his apartment, at or near the River Inn Grill and River Theater in east downtown and near the Russian River. He was charged with misdemeanor resisting or obstructing an officer, and booked on $2,500.00 bail. Further details of that incident were not available. Earlier records show that in 2009, while already on probation, he was charged with DUI and resisting arrest, and in another incident with battery, along with probation violations.
Once released from the hospital, where he was placed under guard, Singleton will be booked for all appropriate offences, likely including assault with a deadly weapon, criminal threats, child endangerment, and resisting arrest.
The Press Democrat: Police: Deputy fired four times at gun-toting Guerneville man