Modesto Police Investigators continue to follow-up on the shooting death of Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Deputy Robert “Bob” Paris and Locksmith Glendon Engert. The initial investigation has revealed a horrific glimpse as to the intentions of the suspect on the tragic day of the shooting.
Late Monday afternoon, the Stanislaus County Coroner’s Office was able to confirm the identity of Jim Richard Ferrario, a 45-year-old Modesto resident, as the person found deceased inside the complex at the 2100 block of Chrysler Drive, in north Modesto. Ferrario is the suspect who is believed to have shot and killed Deputy Paris and Mr. Engert before barricading himself in his residence and creating an 11-hour standoff with law enforcement authorities. The coroner’s office has ruled the cause of death of Ferrario to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department was in the process of formally evicting Ferrario from the residence and had posted a notice of eviction five days prior to the shooting on Ferrario’s front door. The notice informed Ferrario that deputies would be returning on April 12th.
According to Modesto Police, based upon the evidence located in the residence and the positioning of that evidence, all indicators strongly suggest Ferrario was planning a fatal confrontation with law enforcement.
Ferrario was found in the bathroom of his residence with a stockpile of weapons and ammunition. He was wearing a bulletproof vest, a gas mask, makeshift ballistic protective padding strapped around his extremities, a nylon “police style” duty belt with holstered guns on each side of his body, cargo pants filled with ammunition, and had a tear gas canister strapped to his leg.
Within arm’s reach of Ferrario, detectives discovered 22 firearms, of which 17 were rifles and shotguns, as well as an SKS and an M-16. There were also over 500 rounds of ammunition and a police scanner. In addition, Ferrario had a supply of several gallons of water.
Modesto Police say that all of this suggests Ferrario was prepared for a long term and violent standoff with police. Detectives believe Ferrario used one of the recovered high powered assault rifles to kill Deputy Paris and Mr. Engert.
During the standoff, Ferrario barricaded his windows with furniture. Ferrario also gained access into the other three residences within the fourplex, which allowed him to move freely throughout the complex. Ferrario also had several surveillance cameras mounted outside of his complex, allowing him to monitor the front door and the area surrounding his residence.
The motive for Ferrario’s actions is unknown and still under investigation. Ferrario had very little contact with law enforcement prior to this incident. The extent of his law enforcement contact with police was for minor traffic citations and a prior verbal dispute with a neighbor. The Modesto Police Department had no information which would lead to any safety concerns regarding Ferrario or any reports of potential violence.
As to the cause and origin of the fire, investigators from the U.S. Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms and Modesto Fire Department are actively investigating that portion of the investigation. Investigators have ruled out the possibility of the fire being caused by an electrical malfunction or by a build-up of natural gas. Two of the remaining possibilities are that either Ferrario started the fire or the fire was unintentionally started by law enforcement, during the deployment of less than lethal devices.
Due to the structure of the complex being unstable, plans have been made to demolish the structure sometime this week.
“This tragic event underscores the unpredictable nature of law enforcement and the potential for violence faced by all peace officers daily. Even the most routine tasks can turn deadly, as shown by this incident. From all evidence, it appears Ferrario planned on engaging in a violent confrontation with the deputies who appeared that day.” said Modesto Police Chief Michael Harden. “Our department grieves the loss of Deputy Paris and Mr. Engert and our hearts go out to their families.”
Funeral arrangements for Deputy Robert Paris have been scheduled for Friday April 20th at 12:00 PM at Big Valley Grace Community Church, located at 4040 Tully Road Modesto, CA. There will be a procession from the church to Lakewood Memorial Park at 900 Santa Fe Avenue Hughson, CA. following the church service for a graveside service.