WATCH: Santa Cruz Cop Killer’s Spree Interrupted by Heroic Citizens

Ben Lomond, CA  —  We reported last week on the death of Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Deputy Damon Gutzwiller who was allegedly ambushed and killed by U.S. Air Force recruit Steven Carillo.  Carillo is currently being held on chargers of murder.

New details have emerged that two unarmed local citizens are being hailed as heroes after they interrupted Carillo’s killing spree.

One brave, unarmed citizen tackled Carillo to the ground after he watched him trying to get into a getaway car and drive away from the scene of the ambush.

This despite the fact that Carillo was heavily armed and had pipe bombs on his person.

That guy is a hero.

As soon as the unnamed citizen got Carillo to the ground, he started shouting for help.  That’s when a second citizen ran up to helped the first man hold Carillo until police arrived.

Check out this video below:

Santa Cruz County Sheriff Jim Hart reiterated that the two citizens are heroes.

“It was a remarkable, remarkable, heroic thing that that resident did. This guy could have done a lot more damage in our community had that resident not taking the action that he did.”

One of the two men were willing to go on camera.  Eric Thom saw the first citizen wrestling with Carillo and calling for help.  Eric ran over with his dog and helped hold Carillo to the ground.

Ambushed Police Officers

Gutzwiller and his partner were responding to a call about a suspicious van parked in a residential neighborhood.  The eyewitness reported that the back of the van was filled with guns and bomb making supplies.

When the two officers arrived at the van’s location, the van ‘conveniently’ pulled away, but Gutzwiller and his partner didn’t realize it was a trap.  They couldn’t have known that they were dealing with a lunatic who wanted to kill as many cops as he could that day.

The deputies followed the van down a residential driveway only to be attacked in an ambush Carillo had planned for them.  He shot both deputies and exploded a pipe bomb.  Gutzwiller died of his injuries, while his partner remains hospitalized in stable but critical condition.

Possible Connection To Another Killed Police Officer

Carillo is also now the main suspect in the fatal shooting of a federal security officer in Oakland just one week ago. The FBI is looking into whether the white van that Carillo was driving on Saturday is the same white van that was seen leaving the scene of the Oakland murder.

The Oakland van didn’t have visible license plates attached during the Oakland event, so the FBI is waiting on forensics.

Carillo is a widower. His wife also served in the Air Force. Her body was discovered two years ago at an Air Force base in South Carolina. An investigation declared her death a suicide.

Hats Off To Those Citizens

…but next time, get a gun!   Nobody wants to wrestle on the ground with an armed and dangerous lunatic who has nothing to lose.

A handgun would have allowed any citizen to stop a lunatic like this — not just somebody fit enough to take on a young man in peak form.

But for these two guys, you deserve all the praise you’re getting and then some.  Gutzwiller’s family can have closure knowing that the bad guy isn’t out on the streets and the rest of their community can sleep peacefully knowing this cop-killer isn’t on the loose.