Deputy Sheriff Jeffrey Vaughn Mitchell was killed on October 27, 2006 with his own service revolver while on duty.
Evidence at the crime scene showed that Mitchell was involved in a violent struggle for his life.
Hundreds of law enforcement officers and many organizations began the search for the killer(s). Nobody was ever found. His case was never solved.
The Car Stop
Early in the morning of October 27, 2006, Deputy Jeff Mitchell was patrolling the rural area of Sacramento County near Meiss and Dillard Roads, California.
Around 330am, by using his car’s computer, he contacted dispatch. He was going to stop a white Chevrolet van without license plates for a vehicle code violation. In one newspaper article it says that van had one occupant. In another it says that Mitchell himself reported that he could see at least one person in the van.
Not long after Mitchell had contact with dispatch, they tried to reach him as a welfare check. “At some point during the contact, the dispatcher heard his radio microphone click,” said Sergeant Tony Turnbull, a homicide detective with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office and friend of Mitchell’s. “When they radioed back to him, there was no answer.” At that point, other patrol cars were immediately sent to Mitchell’s location.
When his colleagues arrived, they found Mitchell mortally wounded. He had been shot in the head with his own service weapon. Mitchell was transported to UC Davis Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 445 am as a result of his injuries.
The White Van
The white van was no longer at the crime scene, of course. However, later that same day, it was found abandoned in the Cosumnes River. This is about 20 miles from where Mitchell was found. Authorities found two bodies inside that van. They had died from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Authorities think that someone was busy dumping these bodies and they were interrupted by Mitchell’s traffic stop. No one else was found near the van. I have not read if any items were found inside that white van.
Jeffrey Vaughn Mitchell
Mitchell did a five-year tour in the Air Force after he graduated from Westmont High School in 1986. After he left the Air Force, he earned a teaching degree at California State University, Sacramento. He began his career with the Sheriff’s Department in 1997. He became a deputy three years later. He was a nine-year veteran of the Sacramento County Sheriff department. He would have turned 52 years today.
If you have any information, please contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324) or submit tips online at tips.fbi.gov
Rest in peace, Deputy Sheriff Jeffrey Vaughn Mitchell.