By John M. Blodgett, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Posted: 06/05/16 – 6:26 PM PDT |

LOMA LINDA >> Shawn O’Connell, 48, of Rialto, a current city councilman and retired Rialto police sergeant, was found dead Sunday morning in Loma Linda, according to law enforcement news releases. There were no signs of foul play.

“He was a big part of not only my family, but also the bigger community,” said David Phillips, who became friends with O’Connell while helping him campaign for city council in 2012. “My kids call him Uncle Shawn.”

Rialto police officers and San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies from Loma Linda went to the 24800 block of Redlands Boulevard at about 11:09 a.m. to check for a missing person’s vehicle, a sheriff’s news release stated. Various Facebook posts reported police activity at the KFC and Del Taco restaurants in this area about that time.

O’Connell was reported missing after failing to arrive Saturday night at a Friends of the Rialto Library event, Phillips said.

Officers and deputies found a van at the location matching the description of the vehicle, the news release stated. An officer looked inside and found an unresponsive man later identified as O’Connell. Responding medical personnel pronounced him dead at the scene.

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