Bee reporters answer questions about area crime news, trends and other issues.
QUESTION: Several years ago, a Sacramento sheriff's deputy was killed on a routine traffic stop of a white van. A white van was later found submerged near the murder scene. Has the killer ever been located, and what is the status of that investigation if not?
Submitted by: Steph, Sacramento
ANSWER: Sacramento County Sheriff's Deputy Jeffrey Mitchell was shot and killed about 3:30 a.m. Oct. 27, 2006, while checking on a white van without a license plate on a rural road near Sloughhouse.
His killer has not been found. The Sheriff's Department's website currently lists the case among its cold case homicide investigations.
Nearly 12 hours after Mitchell was shot, the bodies of Allan E. Shubert, 43, and Nicole Ann Welch, 28, were found in Shubert's white van about 20 miles away.
The white Chevrolet van was in a shallow stretch of the Cosumnes River along the El Dorado County line.
According to stories in The Bee, detectives do not believe either Shubert or Welch was involved in Mitchell's killing and suspect their deaths were an accident. But they believe their deaths were linked to Mitchell's in some way. One possibility is that Shubert's and Welch's bodies were in the van when Mitchell stopped it and that he was shot as part of a cover-up.
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