Riverside Police Department
Press Release


For Immediate Release

Date May 27, 2003
Contact Sergeant Steve Johnson
Phone (909) 320-8005
Fax (909) 320-8043


Officer Involved Shooting

Riverside, Ca-  On Tuesday, May 27, 2003 at approximately 1:06 P.M. Riverside Police Officers responded to the corner of Esparanza Street and Marguerita Avenue after a citizen called about a suspicious person sitting inside a vehicle at that location. Shortly after 1:40 P.M. two officers arrived on scene and made contact with the man. He was sitting inside a 1997 silver Acura. Investigators later learned the vehicle had been reported as a stolen vehicle

When the officers arrived the man exited his car holding a knife in one hand and a screwdriver in the other. He raised the knife and screwdriver in front of his chest and partially extended them toward the officers. He walked toward the officers causing them to fear for their safety. The officers repeatedly ordered the man to drop the knife, but he did not comply with their commands.

Both officers fired their handguns at the suspect. He was struck several times in his upper torso. The officers immediately summoned medical aid. He was treated at the scene prior to being transported to Riverside Community Hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

The suspect was identified as 31 year-old Volner Lemont Stokes of Riverside. No officers or civilians were injured during the incident.

The officers were placed on paid Administrative Leave pursuant to Riverside Police Department Policy.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to call Detective Jim Brandt at (909) 320-8027 or Detective Ron Sanfilippo at (909) 320-8051.