Click photo to enlarge
County District Attorney Mike Ramsey holds a Taser pistol
Wednesday as he makes a point about how the weapon is
deployed. The three-legged table to the right is the piece of
furniture used by Daniel Quick during an attempted assault on
a deputy on Dec. 30. Quick died after being hit with four
Taser darts.(Greg Welter/Enterprise-Record)<p
class='dotPhoto'>All Chico E-R photos are available <a
OROVILLE -- A Magalia man who died Dec. 30 after being hit by
four Taser darts fired simultaneously by two Butte County
sheriff's deputies was given multiple opportunities, over
several hours, to calm down and surrender.
That finding, by a multiagency critical incident protocol
team looking into the death of Daniel Walter Quick, 43, was
announced Wednesday by District Attorney Mike Ramsey.
The two deputies involved, Sgt. Tony Borgman and reserve
deputy Richard Dobkowitz, were found to be justified in their
actions and restored to duty after a period of administrative
Ramsey said an autopsy revealed that the primary cause of
Quick's death was cardiac dysrhythmia, a life-threatening
condition that occurs when the average adult heart rate falls
below 60 beats per minute, or rises above 100 per minute.
In Quick's case, a long history of narcotics abuse, high
blood pressure, diagnosed pulmonary disease and heavy use of
methamphetamine on the day he died made him "exquisitely
sensitive to the induction of a cardiac dysrhythmia, which the
patient sustained at the scene," concluded a pathologist.
The violent encounter with deputies and the Taser shocks
were noted as contributing factors, but Ramsey denied
speculation that getting hit by four darts at once,
fired from two Taser guns, was equivalent to getting shocked
twice at the same time.
He said Taser darts deliver a uniquely configured
50,000-volt shock between the two points where the darts enter
the body, and that getting hit with four darts isn't "double
He said a Taser dart Quick took in the head, as he ducked,
likely had no debilitating effect on the man.
Quick had lived with his parents on Drexel Drive in Magalia
for about five years, and was known to Butte County sheriff's
deputies, including reserve Sgt. Tom Coleman, the first to
contact Quick on the night he died.
Coleman attempted to talk calmly with Quick when he
encountered him on the front porch of his parents' home at
The deputy knew the man had threatened to kill his parents
and burn their house down earlier that day, and that he was
threatening to take his own life.
He also knew that Quick had been the subject of several
psychological episodes over the years, some resulting in
formal mental evaluations.
When Coleman tried to talk with Quick, the suspect
allegedly cursed at him and ran inside the house, where he
continued to shout obscenities and allegedly said the sergeant
would "have to kill him."
Knowing Quick's parents were out of the house, Coleman
stayed outside and called for backup. Before it arrived, the
sergeant heard a rear door to the home close. Coleman went
through a gate and was confronted by Quick, running straight
Coleman ordered the man to stop, but Quick allegedly yelled
out, "I'll kill you first." The suspect then jumped onto a
porch and headed for a back door.
Coleman pulled his Taser and fired, but the darts failed to
leave the gun.
Quick reportedly ran back into the house and continued to
shout obscenities, as Sgt. Jason Hail, deputy Tracy Panuke and
Paradise Police Sgt. Jason Imboden arrived at the home.
They talked with Quick for several minutes through an open
window. During that period, Hail said Quick's mood ranged from
extreme anger to relative calm, and at times he denied he
intended to hurt himself or his parents.
Fearing escalation if deputies entered the home, Hail said
he ordered everyone to leave.
As deputies backed off, Coleman went to find Quick's
parents, Barbara Quick, 73, and Walter Quick, 77. He found
them at a shopping center on the Skyway and took them to the
sheriff's substation in Magalia, where they allegedly told
officials they had been seriously threatened by their son that
day, then signed statements outlining several years of abuse
at the hands of Daniel Quick.
The Quicks reportedly told deputies they had to do their
duty in regard to getting their son out of the house, and
realized there could be deadly consequences.
They believed their son was also under the influence of
methamphetamine that day, and had been exhibiting behavior
stranger than usual.
Among other bizarre statements, the parents said their son
claimed he was related to alien beings from Luna, a moon of
the planet Atari, and that beings from Luna, known as Neflans,
were invading earth. He allegedly said they had already taken
over the Paradise Police Department and were descending on
After he made those statements, Quick's parents left for a
time to go shopping. On return, they noticed that the gas tank
lid for one of their cars have been ripped off and thrown
under the vehicle.
Quick told them he had to look inside the gas tank to
locate a "plutonium device" planted there by the Neflans, whom
he claimed were going to kill them and burn down their house.
It was 7:15 p.m. before deputies, this time joined by
Borgman and Dobkowitz, returned to the house.
Coleman and Panuke went through the front door of the home,
using a key Quick's parents had provided. When the deputy
yelled for Quick to come out, he screamed more obscenities
from his bedroom, then allegedly said, "You're going to have
to kill me."
Quick began throwing items from his bedroom at Coleman,
including shelves, a beer bottle and a large mirror, which
landed with a crash and left shards of glass surrounding
Quick reportedly next grabbed a heavy three-legged wooden
table, held it to his chest, and began rushing at Coleman,
with the legs pointed out.
Coleman had his service revolver drawn, and was about to
fire, when Borgman and Dobkowitz, standing to the left of the
bedroom entrance, fired their Taser guns simultaneously at
Two Taser barbs entered Quick's chest, one lodged into the
side of his neck, and the third struck him in the face, at a
Ramsey said the shots were at close range, from no more
than six or eight feet away.
Quick staggered backwards and fell to the floor. Deputies
rushed in and placed him in handcuffs, but immediately noted
that Quick wasn't reviving from the shocks and had a weak
Medical aid arrived within three minutes and began
resuscitation efforts. Paramedics said Quick had an erratic
heartbeat and was "in defib" — a condition consistent with
cardiac dysrhythmia. He was transported to Feather River
Hospital in Paradise at 7:53 p.m. and pronounced dead there at
The investigative panel concluded that Coleman would have
been justified in using lethal force when Quick charged at him
with the table, and similarly determined that the use of
less-than-lethal force — the Taser pistols — by Borgman and
Dobkowitz was an appropriate response under the circumstances.
The death was the first in Butte County associated with the
use of a Taser pistol by law enforcement. The Butte County
Sheriff's Office has been using Tasers since 2002 and said
each deputy receives a four-hour training course in their