VALLEJO, Calif. - The six Vallejo police officers who shot and killed a man in the drive-thru of a restaurant with a fusillade of 55 shots will not face criminal charges, a special prosecutor said Thursday.
Willie McCoy, 20, was hit by several dozen rounds in February 2019 after authorities say he awoke and reached for a gun while sitting in a car in a Taco Bell drive-thru.
"I felt that all six were legally justified," said Michael Ramos, the special prosecutor who reviewed the case after Solano County District Attorney Krishna Abrams recused herself.
"As soon as the officers felt that there was no more threat, they stopped firing," said Ramos, a former San Bernardino County district attorney.
Ramos said McCoy clearly posed a threat.
"You had this individual with a gun in his lap. It was loaded. You can't sit back as a Monday morning quarterback," he said.
One of the officers who opened fire, Ryan McMahon, was terminated by Vallejo police, not for deciding to shoot McCoy but because he fired a shot while another officer was about to be in the line of fire.
McMahon was also cleared of criminal liability for fatally shooting Ronell Foster a year earlier.
In a statement, Vallejo police said, "The death of Willie McCoy is a tragic loss of life. We continue to extend our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Mr. McCoy."
Melissa Nold, an attorney representing McCoy's family said, "This is, you know, not surprising but it's still shocking, sickening to us."
Nold said the number of shots fired was excessive.
"It's an overkill. It's unnecessary," Nold said. "A man who hasn't actually grabbed a weapon or opened fire on you, to continue to shoot until the person is just immeasurably deceased."
Nold said she was outraged that among the materials reviewed by the special prosecutor was a report prepared by a use-of-force expert who was hired by Vallejo. The expert said the 55 shots was "reasonable."