Shooter, a Mariposa man, ID’d in Hilmar double homicide

rparsons@mercedsunstar.comJune 2, 2014 

The man believed to have killed two women Friday in Merced County before being shot and killed by Merced County sheriff’s deputies was identified Monday as a 49-year-old Mariposa man.

Brian Scott Hiatt was the prime suspect in the shooting deaths of Rhonda Hiatt, 47, of Mariposa, and her sister, Lisa Robbins, 51, of Hilmar, the Merced County Coroner’s Office confirmed.

Turlock police did not release any new details on Monday regarding the officer-involved shooting that led to Brian Hiatt’s death.

The shooting occurred just before 8 p.m. Friday in the 11100 block of South Lander Avenue near Hilmar. Initial reports indicated the shooting took place closer to Stevinson.

An autopsy conducted Monday confirmed both women died of multiple gunshots, Deputy Delray Shelton said.

A motive for the killings has not been released.

Hiatt, who has a lengthy but minor criminal record in Merced and Stanislaus counties, was shot and killed by two sheriff’s deputies Saturday morning in Turlock. Hiatt died about 5:20 a.m. near a motel in the 200 block of South Walnut Road, authorities said.

Investigators have not commented on whether Hiatt was armed when he was killed, but the Sheriff’s Department described the incident as “a confrontation with Merced County sheriff’s deputies.”

Turlock police are conducting the shooting investigation. Merced County deputies are conducting an internal review to determine whether departmental polices and procedures were followed during the incident. The internal affairs investigation is standard procedure in all officer-involved shootings, Shelton confirmed.

Both deputies involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave, which is also standard protocol.

Hiatt’s criminal record dates to at least the mid-1990s in Merced and Stanislaus counties. His convictions primarily involve minor drug, theft and traffic-related violations, but include numerous drunken-driving convictions, according to court records.

In 2007, an assault with a deadly weapon charge was reduced to a misdemeanor after Hiatt and Merced County prosecutors reached a plea agreement, according to Merced Superior Court records.

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