Riverside County sheriff’s deputy Dayle Long has been charged with executing a man in a sports bar in Murrieta, California, after an argument over a game of darts, while he was off-duty.
Police officer Dayle Long, 42, has allegedly shot Samuel Vanettes, 36, three times, leaving the victim to die on the floor of the bar.
It is reported that Dayle Long, who had been drinking alone, struck up a conversation with Samuel Vanettes and his friends at Spelly’s Bar and Grille before the shooting.
An altercation allegedly broke out after the deputy told one of the friends: “I’m better at darts than you are”, Chris Hull, 39, told Patch.com.
“My buddy says, <<Aw, you suck at darts>>. (The man) says, <<That’s why I’m a cop, I can do whatever I want to do>>.”
Chris Hull said his friend asked: “Really, you can do anything?”
The deputy then pulled out his gun, Chris Hull claimed and after the group repeatedly asked him to put it away he “pops three rounds into my friend Sam”.
Dayle Long appeared at the Southwest Justice Center in French Valley in a red prison uniform, on Friday, charged with murder.
Samuel Vanettes, a gas station cashier, was trying to keep the peace in the bar when he was gunned down, John Hall, a spokesperson for the District Attorney’s office, according to Patch.com report.
Dayle Long and another man were in an argument when Samuel Vanettes had stepped in to break up the fight.
“He came in to act as a peacemaker and ended up getting shot,” Chris Hall said.
Chris Hall added that the victim was unarmed and showing no aggressive behavior.
According to a family member of the victim, who spoke to the LA Times, Samuel Vanettes was at the bar with his sister, her boyfriend and another friend when he started playing darts with Dayle Long.
“They were getting along good,” the relative said Samuel Vanettes’ sister had told.
“When the cop started having more whiskey, he started getting belligerent.
“He lifted his shirt up and showed his gun. Sam was standing by the dartboard.
“He said, <<You don’t want to do this; you’re a nice guy>. And he shot him. That’s what I’m told.”
If convicted, Dayle Long could face 50 years to life behind bars.