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Tempe Police: Man participates in two drive-by shootings

Tempe Police Headquarters (Photo illustration by Emily Johnson/The State Press)
Tempe Police Headquarters (Photo illustration by Emily Johnson/The State Press)

Tempe Police Headquarters (Photo illustration by Emily Johnson/The State Press) Tempe Police Headquarters (Photo illustration by Emily Johnson/The State Press)

A 22 year-old Tempe man was arrested Mar. 13 on the 1000 block of South Rural Road on suspicion of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, drive-by shooting, discharging a firearm, criminal damage, disorderly conduct and discharging a firearm within city limits, according to a police report.

Four people were walking together on College Avenue toward 5th Street when a dark Sedan drove past and the passenger in the front seat yelled, “Nice fake gold chains, f----t,” and one of the people walking yelled back according to the report.

The front seat passenger of the car fired four or five shots from the car, police reported.

The car was originally seen coming from a parking garage east of Veterans Way and video surveillance footage was obtained from the garage showing a car just before the shooting, according to the report.

The license plate was visible in the surveillance footage and after a records check the address of the registered owner was identified, police reported.

Officers observed the car leaving the registered address and stopped for a civil traffic violation shortly after, according to the report.

Officers contacted the driver who consented to a search of the vehicle, police reported.

During the search ,two .45 caliber unfired bullets were discovered between the front passenger seat and the center console, according to the report.

The driver was interviewed in regards to her movements with the vehicle and during the interview she admitted being present during the shooting, police reported.

The woman said she was driving the car after picking up her boyfriend, who was drunk, from a party, according to the report.

The woman said her boyfriend told her he was firing in the air to scare the people walking, police reported.

In a separate incident on Feb. 20, a drive-by shooting occurred on the 2000 block of South McClintock Drive in which an unknown person fired seven rounds into a parked and unoccupied vehicle, according to the report.

During the investigation, several fired cases from a .45 caliber handgun were collected as evidence and after a preliminary comparison of fired cases from both incidents it was determined the cases were a match for the same gun, police reported.

Police contacted the man and arrested him on suspicion of aggravated assault and during his arrest the man was in possession of a .40 caliber handgun and not the gun involved in the crime, police reported.

The man had been evicted from his apartment on Feb. 19 and has been staying at various associates homes, police reported.

When the man was arrested, he was in the company of another man who returned to his home after the arrest, police reported. He was contacted by police and allowed the officers to search his apartment, according to the report.

The man pointed out items that belonged to the man arrested and said they were being stored there for him, according to the report.

A search warrant was issued for the apartment and a vehicle registered in the man’s name and police found a .45 caliber handgun, according to the report.

Officers interviewed the man in custody and after being mirandized he denied being at the scene during the shooting and claimed he heard about it at a later date, police reported.

Eventually the man admitted he was in the vehicle with his girlfriend and two other people when he heard shots fired from an unknown area at the location, police reported.

He claimed he did not see where the shots were fired from and could not give further details and then requested a lawyer, ending the interview, according to the report.

The man was transported to Tempe City Jail, where he was booked and held to see a judge, police reported.

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