District Attorney: No charges in fatal OIS against man swinging metal chain

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The District Attorney’s office said a San Diego Police officer who shot and killed a man swinging a heavy metal chain toward him will not be criminally liable after a review of the 2018 incident.

According to the DA, witnesses reported seeing Vaughn Denham, 48, attack another man in the head and torso with a machete, causing serious injuries. A San Diego Police officer responded to the call and as the officer was getting out of his patrol car, Denham ran up to the car and swung a four-foot long metal chain, striking the car.

A release from the office detailed the incident “The officer got out of the car and ordered Denham to drop the chain. Denham refused and began walking towards the officer while aggressively swinging the chain. The officer deployed his Taser, which was ineffective. The officer continued to retreat from Denham for a block and a half to avoid being struck by the chain. For more than one minute, the officer continued to give commands to drop the weapon, get on the ground and warned he would be forced to shoot.  As Denham ignored the officer’s commands and continued to close the distance between the two men, the officer fired two rounds, striking Denham. Denham was transported to the hospital where he later died.”

Toxicology results showed Phencyclidine (PCP), Cannabinoids, and Methamphetamine in Denham’s system.

Categories: Local San Diego News