Sheriff’s personnel converge on the Graeagle Mill Pond on Sunday in the late afternoon as they received word of shots fired from a deputy on scene who had been responding to a report of a suicidal man. Photos by Michael Clawson

Man fires into the air before shooting self

Law enforcement converged on Graeagle Mill Pond

The California Highway Patrol directs traffic along Highway 89 in front of the Graeagle Store Sunday afternoon. The highway was closed to through traffic until the scene could be secured following the news that shots had been fired from a vehicle at the adjacent Mill Pond.

A man fired three shots from his vehicle — two into the air —before suffering a self-inflicted gunshot wound Sunday afternoon at the Graeagle Mill Pond. Troy L. Mora, 40, of Graeagle was flown by helicopter to Renown Medical Center in Reno for treatment of his injuries, but died shortly after arrival.

Sheriff Greg Hagwood said that family members called 911 around 3 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 18, to report that Mora was suicidal and armed, and provided a description of the vehicle he was driving. A deputy located the vehicle at the Mill Pond, the popular swimming hole next to the Graeagle Store.

According to Assistant Sheriff Dean Canalia, as the deputy approached the vehicle, Mora fired two shots into the air. Some words were exchanged between the deputy and Mora, and the deputy retreated and called for backup. Units from the California Highway Patrol, more personnel from the Sheriff’s Office, and other emergency responders  arrived on the scene. “They kept him under surveillance,” Canalia said.

After noticing that there didn’t appear to be any movement from Mora, a distraction device was deployed, which is “very bright, very loud.”

“When he didn’t respond to the percussion grenade, we moved in,” Canalia said.

A variety of emergency responders descended on the Graeagle Mill Pond on Sunday afternoon. Sheriff Greg Hagwood lauded the California Highway Patrol for arriving quickly and helping to secure the scene.

During the incident, patrons of the Graeagle Store were instructed to remain inside and Highway 89 was closed to traffic.

“I want to recognize and thank the CHP for their quick response and assistance in securing the situation,” Hagwood said.