On Jan. 17, Ted Rose called the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department for help with his mentally ill son. By the end of the night, his son was dead at the hands of a deputy.
Nearly three months after the fatal shooting of 24-year-old Johnathan Rose, his family is speaking out about what they witnessed that night and raising questions about the actions of the deputy who ultimately shot Johnathan.
"Our whole life has been turned upside down," said Johnathan's mother, Dee Rose. "It's like a nightmare you can't wake up from."
Some details of the encounter are not disputed by Rose's family or the Sheriff's Department, such as the fact that Johnathan and the deputy were in a violent struggle just before the shooting.
However, sheriff's officials say there are "inconsistencies" between the account given this week by Ted Rose, who witnessed the entire encounter, and the recorded statement he gave detectives the night of the shooting. And Sheriff Scott Jones said he believes the shooting was justifiable, albeit tragic.
"I think the shooting was within law, within policy and certainly the decisions (the deputy) made that night were within his discretion," Jones said Thursday.
According to his family, symptoms of Johnathan's severe mental health challenges began showing up when he was about 14 years old. He was diagnosed with social anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders, and his fear of crowds kept him mostly at home or in the car, his family told The Bee in an emotional interview at the offices of their attorney, Moseley Collins.
His family described Johnathan as sweet, loyal and gentle. But on a few occasions he had shown physical aggression, they said.
Twice while living in Placer County, the family had called 911 for help with Johnathan. The interactions with law enforcement were positive, the family said, once landing him in a mental health facility. The other time, officers defused the situation and left, the family said.
Last fall, for financial reasons, the family moved from Roseville to North Highlands, which meant Johnathan's mental health services transferred to Sacramento County.
Deputy started violence, father says.
The day of the shooting, Johnathan arrived home upset and agitated after several grueling hours of mental health assessment, Ted Rose said.
There was little food in the house, and the family's financial stress was palpable, said Ted Rose, a 50-year-old pastor, who no longer works full-time because of medical issues.
After Johnathan threw a bag of fast food against the wall, his father decided to call 911, worried the behavior would escalate. That was the only physical act of violence by his son, Ted Rose insisted to The Bee.
He told dispatchers his son was "5150" and he was not sure if his son had taken his medications.
According to sheriff's homicide detectives who investigated the shooting, deputies were informed via in-car computers that Johnathan was "being violent," had "shoved" the caller – Ted Rose – and was "throwing stuff."
About 45 minutes later, Deputy David McEntire arrived. By then, Ted Rose said, his son had taken medication and gone to bed.
Ted Rose alleges that at the door, the deputy "barged" past him and yelled at his son to wake up and get out of bed. Johnathan did so, turning toward the wall with his hands behind his back to be arrested, Ted Rose said.
When the deputy ordered Johnathan to the ground, Ted Rose said his son, a severe germophobe, tried but again stood and faced the wall with his hands behind his back.
According to Ted Rose, the deputy tackled Johnathan, pushing him into the wall. When Johnathan tried to stand, the deputy hit him in the head with his flashlight, knocking him to the bed.
That's when Johnathan began to fight back, his father said. Ted Rose said he tried to intervene but the deputy shot Johnathan.
Hearing gunshots, Dee Rose and the couple's 27-year-old son, Ted, ran into the room. All three allege that when the elder Ted Rose hysterically asked the deputy why he shot Johnathan, the deputy looked "shocked" and said "I don't know."
Homicide Detective Brian Meux said backup officers found McEntire's nose bleeding, his glasses knocked off, his radio microphone displaced from his shoulder and his uniform shirt ripped open.
Meux said McEntire is "not a small person" and that his injuries "indicated to us this was a pretty violent encounter."
Detective Rob Tracy said he interviewed Ted Rose at the hospital that night and that "parts of his statement to you are different than information given to me that night."
He declined to elaborate, saying he felt it was "inappropriate." Other sheriff's officials said others, including attorneys, would have to sort out and interpret the discrepancies.
Detectives did say, however, the initial recorded statements by Ted Rose and McEntire were fairly consistent.
Tracy noted that detectives conduct interviews as quickly as possible after such incidents "to try to capture recollections when they are freshest in a person's mind."
As is standard in any officer-involved shooting, the incident was reviewed by homicide detectives to determine McEntire's criminal liability and by internal affairs to determine whether he violated any department policies.
Those reviews are still in progress, but Jones, who was recently briefed on the case, said he has no information yet to suggest any wrongdoing.
Johnathan's family and their attorney have raised questions about why a deputy would respond to a "5150" call by himself, without backup. Jones said there were "a lot of very valid reasons" McEntire might have felt that was safe, including the amount of time that lapsed since the 911 call and the lack of followup calls in that time.
"Would (having backup) have changed the outcome? I don't know," Jones said, "but certainly that's something that could have kept the officer out of harm's way and mitigated the sense he felt (that he needed to shoot)."
Jones said he has no plans to issue any mandates in response to the incident, but said it is an opportunity to "figure out how we can do things better, … more safely."
He also said he has sympathy for the family and for the deputy, who "knows he took a son from the family as well."
"You have victims on both sides here," he said. "I feel terrible … because Johnathan is not a bad guy. He's a guy with (mental illness)."
The Rose family say they are preparing to file a complaint against the county and, if necessary, a wrongful death suit.
Collins, their attorney, cites the incident as an example of why District Attorney Jan Scully's office should continue to investigate officer-involved shootings.
Scully announced last summer that because of budget cuts, her office wouldconduct such reviews only when asked by an agency concerned about controversial circumstances.
Ted Rose said he feels his son was wronged – by the deputy and by sheriff's officials who have portrayed Johnathan as the aggressor.
"We owe it to the honor and dignity and memory of his name to get the story out," he said. "He wasn't a perfect boy, but he didn't deserve (this)."