A former Riverside County sheriff’s deputy is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday for the 2011 off-duty shooting death of a man in a Murrieta bar.
Dayle William Long, 44, of Corona was found guilty Dec. 12, 2013 of one count of second-degree murder; the jury also found true the enhancement that he discharged a firearm causing the death of Samuel Vanettes, 36, of Winchester.
Long is set to be sentenced by Riverside County Superior Court Judge Angel Bermudez at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 30 at Southwest Justice Center near Murrieta.
The sentencing hearing will include an opportunity for Vanettes’ surviving family members and friends to address the judge about their loss if they wish to do so, according to John Hall, spokesman for the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.
Long will also be given the chance to speak.
With the second-degree conviction and the enhancement, the former deputy faces a sentence of 40 years to life in state prison, Hall said.
Vanettes was discovered dead the night of Dec. 21, 2011 on the floor of Spelly’s Pub & Grille in Murrieta.
Long—who at the time was a 10-year-veteran of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department—was off-duty and had been drinking with Vanettes, Vanettes’ sister and their friends at the establishment at 40675 Murrieta Hot Springs Road.
At some point in the evening, Long and Vanettes had became involved in a disagreement about a street in Orange County. That is said to have escalated into an argument.
At about 8 p.m. that night, Murrieta police responded to a call of a man with a gun. When officers arrived they contacted Long who identified himself as an off-duty deputy.
Officers found a man inside, dead from gunshot wounds. He was identified as Vanettes, unarmed and described by several witnesses as a “peacemaker.”
“It was determined Long shot Vanettes several times, killing him,” Hall said.
Long was arrested by Murrieta police detectives and was held in lieu of $1 million bail as he awaited trial.
The Sheriff’s Department terminated Long in 2012. He had most recently served as a court bailiff and a member of the sheriff’s dive team.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Burke Strunsky of the DA’s Homicide Unit.
The jury deliberated about a day and a half before reaching its verdict.
In order for Long to have been convicted of first-degree murder, jurors would have had to be convinced that he pre-meditated the killing.