Truckee man faces manslaughter charge in fatal downtown assault | SierraSun.com

Truckee man faces manslaughter charge in fatal downtown assault

Bryan Luke Sperlin was arrested June 18 on suspicion of a felony charge of battery causing serious bodily injury.
Courtesy Nevada County Jail |

TRUCKEE, Calif. — Police on Friday arrested a 24-year-old local man on suspicion of felony manslaughter for his alleged role in a fatal assault in downtown Truckee in June.

According to a statement from the Truckee Police Department, officers arrested Bryan Luke Sperlin, 24, of Truckee at about 6:50 p.m. on Martis Valley Road.

“Officers spotted Sperlin driving his vehicle leaving the Glenshire Area,” according to a Friday evening statement from TPD. “A traffic stop was conducted and Sperlin was arrested without incident.”

Sperlin, who turns 25 on July 15, was originally arrested on suspicion of felony assault after a “physical fight” occurred June 18 in downtown Truckee with 39-year-old Jesse Hill, of Chico.

Hill — a Truckee native and graduate of Truckee High School who had been living in Chico — eventually died of his injuries on July 3.

Sperlin’s bail was initially at $50,000 on suspicion of two felonies and one misdemeanor charge, and he had since been released.

He now faces a charge of voluntary manslaughter — according to California law, voluntary manslaughter applies to a killing committed either during a sudden quarrel, or in the heat of passion.

He is currently imprisoned at Nevada County Jail; his bail is set at $100,000.

According to California law, someone convicted of voluntary manslaughter can be sentenced to up to 11 years in prison.

“The Truckee Police have been continually investigating since the original incident,” according to Friday’s statement. “… The investigation has been referred to the Nevada County District Attorney’s Office for judicial proceedings.”

“The Truckee Police Department will not be releasing any additional information or making any public comments regarding the investigation,” officials went on to say.

Earlier this week, TPD Chief McGill told the Sierra Sun as much when the newspaper sought to obtain a copy of the initial police report and other investigation details.

“… We will not release any materials relating to the case at it remains an open and active investigation (per CA law),” McGill wrote in an email. “All required public disclosures have been made in our press releases and the press log…”

Witnesses or anyone with information about the June 18 incident should contact TPD Sgt. Bob Womack at rwomack@townoftruckee.com, or call Truckee Police at 530-550-2323.