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Deputy reportedly called police himself after fatal bar shooting

December 22, 2011 |  1:00 pm

 An off-duty Riverside County sheriff's deputy who allegedly fatally shot a man in a Murrieta bar stopped after the shooting to reload and use his cellphone to report the incident, a family member of the dead man related Thursday.

Dayle William Long, 42, then walked outside the bar Wednesday night and identified himself to arriving Murrieta police officers as a deputy, police said.

He was questioned and booked on suspicion of murder early Thursday morning, according to a police report.

Long has worked for the Riverside County Sheriff's Department for 10 years and serves on its court services division, said Sgt. Joe Borja, a spokesman for the department.

A Facebook account bearing Long's name lists him as a member of the department's Underwater Search and Recovery Team.

Long had just met the man he allegedly shot and killed -- Samuel Vallentes, 36, of Winchester -- said a relative of the victim who asked not to be named because police asked the family not to speak publicly.

Vallentes, a cashier at a gasoline station, arrived at the crowded Spelly’s Pub and Grille on Murrieta Hot Springs Road for happy hour with his sister, her boyfriend and another friend, the family member said.

Long had been sitting alone and drinking. Vallentes introduced himself and they began playing darts, said the relative, adding he received a first-hand account from the sister and boyfriend.

“They were getting along good,” said the family member. “When the cop started having more whiskey, he started getting belligerent. He was talking to somebody else.

"He lifted his shirt up and showed his gun," the relative continued. "Sam was standing by the dart board. He said, 'You don’t want to do this; you’re a nice guy.' And he shot him. That’s what I’m told.”

Then, as people were scrambling for cover, Long reloaded his gun and pulled out a cellphone, the family member said.

“He was calling dispatch and telling them shots were fired, like he was a cop,” the relative said.

The shooting occurred less than an hour after the two men had met, the family member said.

“He shot him three times. How could that happen?” the family member said. “How could a cop shoot [him]? I’m pro-cop; I just don’t understand it.”

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-- Sam Quinones

twitter.com/samquinones7

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