Solano County DA recuses herself from reviewing Vallejo police shootings of Sean Monterrosa, Willie McCoy

ByKayla Galloway KGO logo
Friday, July 3, 2020
Solano Co. DA recuses herself from reviewing deadly police shootings
Top prosecutor Krishna Abrams said in a video statement Thursday night that she is stepping back from the shooting deaths of Willie McCoy and Sean Monterrosa.

SOLANO COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- The Solano County District Attorney is recusing herself and her office from two deadly officer involved shootings involving the Vallejo Police Department, the prosecutor announced Thursday night.

Top prosecutor Krishna Abrams said in a video statement that she is stepping back from investigating the shooting deaths of Willie McCoy and Sean Monterrosa.

The Solano County district attorney's recusal came after calls last month for the prosecutor to pursue charges against the police officers involved or step back from the cases.

McCoy was shot in 2019 by Vallejo police officers while asleep in a Taco Bell drive-thru. Police said he had a gun in his lap.

Monterossa was shot on June 2 outside of a Walgreens. The 22-year-old dropped to a kneeling position outside the store before he was shot. Vallejo's police chief said last month that the officer who shot Monterrosa saw him place his hands above his waist, revealing what the officer thought was a handgun. It was later revealed Monterrosa only had a hammer.

RELATED: Family mourns man shot, killed by Vallejo police

Last month, the Solano County District Attorney's Office requested the California Attorney General investigate the Monterrosa case, which the state office declined, saying the DA did not provide them with information indicating her office was not capable of a fair review.

In her statement Thursday, the Solano County DA said "Throughout my career as a prosecutor for over 24 years I have fought for justice for crime victims from all walks of life, supported the dedicated men and women of law enforcement, upheld the constitutional rights of those accused and sought to hold accountable those who've committed crimes throughout our community."

Abrams also referenced "civil unrest" in the county since the June 2 shooting.

RELATED: Community outraged after man shot, killed by police at Taco Bell drive-thru in Vallejo

"Since June 2nd, there has been a great deal of civil unrest throughout Solano County," she said.

In the emailed statement to ABC7 News on June 23, Abrams said, "We understand the anger and frustration that many are feeling in our community and we strongly support the right to speak up and peacefully protest issues that are important to our community."

Abrams is now calling on the California Attorney General to conduct an independent investigation into the police shootings.

She cited the lack of public trust and "exceptional circumstances" as reasons for her office's recusal.

RELATED: CA AG's office declines to conduct independent review of Vallejo PD shooting, killing of 22-year-old man, Solano Co. DA says

"It is imperative that all criminal investigations, including use of force investigations, be conducted professionally, objectively, fairly and independently," the prosecutor said Thursday.

Last month, California's Attorney General announced an agreement with Vallejo and its police department to create a comprehensive policing plan to reform Vallejo Police Department's policies and increase public trust.