A Northern California man who was holding a 4-month-old child tried to break up a fight on Wednesday — and the result was deadly, according to police.
Travis Hutchinson, 31, went to a Redding, California, home on Wednesday evening to help his girlfriend’s cousin prepare for a math exam, police said. But as Hutchinson helped with test prep, another man started to pick fights with a handful of people at the home.
Amid the fighting, the homeowner threatened to call authorities. That’s when the man who set off the brawl — Burl William Hall, 34, according to the Red Bluff Daily News — left the home and took the fighting to the street.
Hoping to put an end to the incident, Hutchinson went onto the porch with a 4-month-old child in his arms and told Hall and others to stop fighting, police said.
That set Hall off, according to police: Hall “became enraged” with Hutchinson, and then charged towards him and started hitting him in the face and head. Hutchinson was still holding the child during the attack.
At one point, Hall nearly knocked Hutchinson out, police said. The baby slid from Hutchinson’s hands, but Hutchinson was able to grab the infant in time — saving the child before it hit the concrete porch, according to police.
Even then, Hall kept attacking, police said.
Hutchinson “feared for his and the infant’s life,” police said, so he grabbed his lawfully concealed handgun and shot one round at Hall.
The bullet struck Hall in the chest and killed him, according to police.
Hutchinson told bystanders to call for police and paramedics, and then stayed at the scene until officers responded around 6 p.m. He gave a statement at the police department and was released.
The child was uninjured, and Hutchinson had only minor injuries, police said.
Hall was a registered sex offender who had a “lengthy criminal history,” police said.
Police said the investigation has been passed on to Shasta County prosecutors for review.