Union City shooting suspects found dead after wounding deputy

The investigation into the shooting of an Alameda County sheriff's deputy took a turn Thursday after police say they found two suspects, a man and a woman, who apparently killed themselves after wounding the deputy, authorities said.

The couple is believed to be responsible for shooting one of the two sheriff's deputies who were serving an eviction on Wednesday afternoon at a commercial building that had been converted into a living space, the Union City police department said. The building sits among a row of warehouses. 

Authorities did not say who actually shot the deputy.

Police said none of the deputies fired their weapons.

"I can tell you that no gun, no gunshots were fired by any of the officers or deputies," said Union City Police Sgt. Jean Jimenez. 

Both the man and the woman, whom police described as in some sort of relationship, died of self-inflicted gun wounds, police said. Police would not elaborate or identify them immediately. 

One of the deputies was struck in the arm by the gunfire and survived. He underwent surgery and is expected to recover.

Officers had been searching for hours attempting to locate the suspects before a SWAT team located their bodies inside a building at 33370 Dowe Avenue near Alvarado Niles Road.

It appeared that the space had been converted into living quarters, officials said at a news conference on Thursday afternoon.

"It is believed that these two individuals are responsible for the shooting of the ACSO deputy," the police department said in a statement.

The sheriff's office also is not disclosing the identity of the wounded deputy. 

He did not confirm whether the suspects were living there.

The two deputies who responded to the commercial building are part of the sheriff's office's civil unit. 

They were wearing body-worn cameras, weapons and were in full uniform. 

Alameda County Sheriff's Department Capt. Tya Modeste said that the two deputies were carrying out an eviction of the building as part of an eviction process that started in November 2023.

A notice was posted on the building on Jan. 14 and the deputies were there in person on Wednesday to serve the notice. 

Modeste acknowledged that evictions are emotional. 

"As we can all understand, anyone being evicted from a property would be reasonably upset in some situations," she said. "You never know how things are going to unfold."

On Tuesday, in a separate instance, there was a standoff in Oakland that started with deputies serving an eviction notice on 82nd and Outlook avenues. Details have not been provided on what happened in this case. 

Modeste said they are investigating the protocols the deputies employed while serving the eviction notice, as they are trained to follow specific steps when approaching a residence.

Modeste said she could not confirm who was the target of the eviction. 

But Jimenez added: "I think they were named as part of the eviction process."

Union City Mayor Carol Dutra-Vernaci noted that with all cities, rent moratoriums were evoked during the pandemic, but now those moratoriums have been lifted.

"Since then, however, that time period has elapsed," she said. "So we're back to what our position was pre-COVID. So that being said, this again is entirely under the purview of normal processes. When somebody is behind on their rent, it goes to the county for eviction and everything was done according to the book."

Alameda County data obtained by KTVU show that evictions went down during the spring of 2020 but are now on their way up. 

There were 929 unlawful detainers served in 2020, including several months when there were zero evictions, compared to 4,806 unlawful detainers served in 2023. 

The county served 57 unlawful detainers for commercial properties in 2020 and 488 in 2023. 

An unlawful detainer means that someone was notified they are living in a place illegally, but it doesn't necessarily mean that an actual eviction notice was served.