MENDOCINO Co., 1/20/20 — Yesterday a manhunt and eventual stand-off ended in tragedy when Kevin A. Larson, 32 of Nevada, evidently committing suicide during a confrontation with local, state, and federal law enforcement.
According to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office, Larson, a United States Air Force serviceman, fled a sentencing hearing on Friday, after being convicted in a court martial at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. On Saturday he was spotted on U.S. Route 101, south of Ukiah, by officers of the California High Patrol, and subsequently led them on a chase, eventually turning off onto Reeves Canyon Rd. in Redwood Valley. There the CHP lost Larson due to the poor condition of the dirt road — Larson was in a 2018 Jeep Wrangler.
That night agents of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations arrived and maintained surveillance of the entrance to Reeves Canyon Rd. which dead ends several miles back into the hills.
The following morning, Sunday, a search of the road commenced, and eventually his Jeep was found. MCSO deputies encountered the Jeep but could not see into the vehicle through fogged up windows, and sent two different aerial drones to get a closer look. Shortly after the second drone approached the car, a single gunshot was heard.
At this point local SWAT was called in, they approached in the CRV, Mendocino County’s armored vehicle, but had to finish the approach on foot due to the condition of the road. Larson was found dead some yards behind the Jeep, having suffered what appears to be a self-inflicted wound from a high power rifle that he was carrying.
Due to his absconding on a Friday before a three-day weekend, and the fact that federal offices, as well as courts, are closed today, we have not been able to gather any additional information about the crimes for which he was convicted at court martial, nor his rank, hometown, or other such information — but we will continue to seek additional information.
Here is a more detailed account of the events from yesterday: