Armed robbery suspect is shot in Jamestown

A Jamestown man is recovering from surgery for gunshot wounds after officers shot him Wednesday morning when they say he used a gun to rob a market.

Larry James Derossett Jr., 40, was shot at least twice, once in the leg and once near his abdomen and groin, said Lt. Dan Bressler of the Tuolumne County Sheriff's Department. His injuries do not appear life threatening.

Deputies received a call about 3 a.m. that someone was trying to rob the Valero gas station at 18372 Highway 108 in Jamestown, Bressler said. The station is known historically as the Whistle Stop.

The clerk reported that someone wearing a mask and holding a gun was robbing the market. When deputies and California Highway Patrol officers arrived, reports said, the robber was running into a creek bed behind the shop.

Officers shot the man, later identified as Derossett, at least twice. It remains unclear how many officers were involved in the shooting. Authorities have not determined whether anything was taken in the robbery.

Bressler said each officer who responded to the incident will be interviewed to determine who shot Derossett. The Sheriff's Department is working with the district attorney's office, the Department of Justice and the CHP to investigate what happened, he said.

Derossett was taken into surgery at Sonora Regional Medical Center. He came out of surgery Wednesday afternoon.

Officers found a small handgun at the scene, Bressler said.

Investigators are trying to determine if Derossett tried to break into the Willow Steakhouse on Main Street in Jamestown right before the market robbery, Bressler said. Deputy Mike Pershall was on patrol at 2:30 a.m. when he saw someone trying to get inside the restaurant. Pershall could not catch the person, who fled as the deputy approached.

Soon afterward, Bressler said, officers received the call about the robbery at the Whistle Stop, which is across the highway from the restaurant.

Derossett was arrested on suspicion of armed robbery, Bressler said.

It's been several years since Tuolumne County had an officer-involved shooting, Bressler said.

Bee staff writer Emilie Raguso can be reached at eraguso@modbee.com or 578-2235.

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