Crime - Sacto 911

Forced from their homes by rifle fire, North Sacramento residents waited for standoff to end

Neighbor recalls first moments of shooting

Muhammed Ilyas, who lives on El Camino Avenue and Edgewater Road, said he was driving his Volvo up Grove Avenue when the active shooter situation started. He left his car — with the keys still in the ignition — and fled down the street to safety.
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Muhammed Ilyas, who lives on El Camino Avenue and Edgewater Road, said he was driving his Volvo up Grove Avenue when the active shooter situation started. He left his car — with the keys still in the ignition — and fled down the street to safety.

Some holed up inside their homes, waiting to be evacuated. Some milled about behind police tape wondering what to do.

One man unwittingly drove into the gunfire in his north Sacramento neighborhood Wednesday night and had to flee.

Residents of the Noralto neighborhood where a Sacramento police officer was shot Wednesday dealt waited nervously as police kept their neighborhood cordoned off for hours as they tried to coax a gunman armed with a rifle into surrendering.

Muhammed Ilyas, who lives on El Camino Avenue and Edgewater Road, said he was driving his Volvo up Grove Avenue when the active shooter situation started. He left his car — with the keys still in the ignition — and fled down the street to safety.

Ilyas had been waiting at the intersection of Grove and Barrette avenues since around 7 p.m. and planned to stay there until the situation ended, he said late Wednesday.

Some area residents apparently were trapped in a backyard across an alley from where the gunman was believed to be hiding, and police had worked to extract them, according to scanner traffic. Police also evacuated three children and a woman from a nearby home.

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The Twin Rivers Unified School District opened Noralto Elementary School at 477 Las Palmas Avenue late Wednesday for anyone displaced by evacuations.

Lysa Tozzo, who lives on Redwood Avenue, said she had been out of her home for hours because of the shooting and was leaving to sleep at a friend’s house after police told her the situation might go on all night.

“I have to be at Arden/Del Paso at 6:23 in the morning to catch my bus,” Tozzo said. “I just started my job. I can’t miss work.”

Joshua Muehe, 28, lives near the intersection of Grove and Barrette avenues, and was home with his family when the first gunshots were fired.

He said he went outside to see what was going on and saw several police cars flying down the street. Then, the police yelled at everyone to get inside.

“It’s kinda shocking for it to happen now because it hasn’t happened in a long time,” he said.

Muehe said he has three kids all ages 5 and under and they were home at the time. He didn’t tell them exactly what was going on, but just that the police were here to “get bad guys.”

“They don’t want to leave the front room,” he said. “They’re scared of going to the back room.”

A police officer is down during an active shooting situation in north Sacramento on June 19, 2019.

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