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SBSD - Headquarters
Sunday September 4th, 2022 :: 04:38 p.m. PDT


Deputies in Needles Attempt to Arrest a Suspect During a Traffic Stop and a Lethal Force Encounter Occurs

DATE/TIME:  September 3, 2022 / 3:14 p.m.

INCIDENT:   Lethal Force Encounter (LFE)

LOCATION:   L Street / W. Broadway Street, Needles

SUSPECT:  Nikolas McPheter, 27-years-old, Resident of Canyon Lake, CA

VICTIM(S):   Confidential

On Saturday, September 3, 2022, at 3:14 p.m., two deputies from the Sheriff’s Needles Station conducted a traffic stop on a maroon, Toyota Scion, occupied by two people.  Deputies discovered the passenger of the vehicle was a protected person in a court ordered domestic violence restraining order against the driver, Nikolas McPheter.   

When deputies attempted to detain McPheter, he resisted, and a struggle ensued. During the struggle, McPheter gained control of a deputy’s firearm and a lethal force encounter occurred.  McPheter was struck by gunfire and was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The Sheriff’s Specialized Investigations Division – Homicide Detail responded and assumed the investigation.  

This investigation is ongoing an no further information is available for release.  Anyone with information regarding this case is urged to contact the Homicide Detail at 909-890-4908.  Callers wishing to remain anonymous should call the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or go to  

Refer:   Detective Shawn Thurman and Sergeant Justin Giles

Station:  Homicide Detail

Phone No. 909-890-4908

Case No. DR# 212200816 / H#2022-113

SHANNON D. DICUS, Sheriff-Coroner
San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Department

SBSD - Headquarters
655 E 3rd St
San Bernardino, CA 92408

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 909-387-3700

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