MODESTO, Calif. – A Stanislaus County, Calif., deputy sheriff was killed in the line of duty early Sunday, authorities said.
Deputy Dennis Wallace, 53, was found dead with two gunshot wounds to the head, according to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department. He was in his patrol car when he called for back up for a suspicious person in a stolen Kia Rio. Wallace had been with the department for 20 years.
“In seconds, he was murdered,” Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson said. “We believe that Deputy Wallace was killed outside of the car, and we know for a fact that the gun used in this crime was is direct contact with his head when the trigger was pulled twice. This was an execution.”
Investigators are searching for David Machado, 36, who was last seen in a white, four-door, 2009 Kia Rio with California license plates.
Stanislaus County is located in the Central Valley of California.