Officers Shoot, Release Dog on Unarmed, Naked Suspect Streaming Action After Handgun Incident

By Max Kennedy

SACRAMENTO – Defendant Keith Kelly allegedly fired a handgun nearly a dozen times inside and around a Sacramento home—fully naked, surrounded by Sacramento police and streaming the “action” on his cellphone, according to testimony from five officers who were present at the scene.

Kelly appeared in in Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Steven Gevercer’s courtroom for a preliminary hearing Wednesday, facing 13 potential felony charges related to assault, grand theft and unlawful possession of a firearm.

He’s already paid a price for his alleged conduct. When surrendering, even though he was unarmed, police shot him with a less-than-lethal round and released a police dog on him—sending Kelly to the hospital.

Officers were dispatched to a house on Congress Avenue last October after a reported assault and an alert from a nearby ShotSpotter gunshot detection system reported several gunshots at the same location. No one was reported to be injured directly by the firearm.

“I heard loud screaming from inside the residence,” said Officer Jacqueline Perez, who helped form a perimeter at the scene. “I observed a male completely naked, later identified as Keith Kelly, holding a handgun,” she continued.

Deputy District Attorney Mai Trieu focused in on a moment when Keith Kelly allegedly aimed his weapon at the police officers.

“He had [the handgun] to his side, and then proceeded to point the weapon in my direction,” said Perez. Other officers supported her claim that the gun was aimed at Perez and another officer, though only briefly.

The defense countered by pointing out that Kelly only pointed the gun in her direction “momentarily” and claimed it was part of a broader sweeping motion.

“There was no direct pointing for a sustained amount of time, demands made, or threats,” said Assistant Public Defender Anthony Crisostomo, adding, “Assault with a deadly firearm is a serious charge. It has to be more than a fleeting motion that passed in front of an officer.”

Judge Gevercer noted a “jury may agree” but found sufficient evidence to move forward with the charge, because it’s a low bar in a prelim to rule that cases should be settled by trial.

At the scene, officers issued verbal commands through the police car public address system, but Kelly reportedly refused to listen.

“He was not listening to our commands and was moving in and around the residence,” said officer Blake Weltz, one of the responding officers. “We stated multiple times that it was the Sacramento Police Department and we needed all occupants to exit the residence with their hands up,” he added.

At one point, Kelly allegedly took out his cell phone and began to stream the event, while still holding a firearm, according to statements from multiple officers. “It looked like he was live streaming on a social media platform,” said Officer Jessica Cummings.

Kelly then allegedly discharged his firearm three to five times inside of the residence, apparently into the walls of the home. Recovered shell casings and bullet holes in the residence matched the firearm in Kelly’s possession.

Kelly left the residence once more and placed the weapon on the ground as he approached the police perimeter. However, he allegedly did not obey further commands and officers made the decision to use less-than-lethal force during the arrest. Officers fired a 40mm round, a beanbag round and released a police dog on Kelly, who by this point was not armed.

Kelly was arrested after being subdued by the police dog, and taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Inside the home, police recovered nearly $12,000 in cash, seemingly matching the amount reported missing by a friend of Kelly’s per police testimony. They also recovered a second unregistered handgun in a “secret” compartment in Kelly’s car.

Kelly will face trial later this spring. A trial date has not yet been selected.

Max Kennedy graduated from Harvard in 2016 with a degree in History. He is an intern with the San Francisco Public Defender and most recently worked as a digital organizer with Joe Biden for President.

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