Suspected Gunman Killed In His Attempt To Make A Quick Getaway

| by Mackenzie Fleming

A suspected gunman was killed on July 15 while trying to flee the crime scene of a drive-by shooting in San Bernardino, California. Authorities said the suspect was killed when the driver of the SUV he was a passenger in lost control and hit a tree. 

The suspect has been identified as 22-year-old James Eley of San Bernardino.

Officers responded to a call reporting the crash and found Eley, who had been ejected from the vehicle when it hit a tree head-on. He was transported to a hospital, where he later died of his injuries, The San Bernardino County Sun reported. 

Sgt. Gerald Beall of the San Bernardino Police Department stated that the incident occurred at about 9:50 p.m., KTLA reported.

Officers also received a call reporting gunshots. Before the fatal collision, Eley allegedly fired several shots at a man outside of a home, before the SUV sped away, KTLA reported. 

Authorities said the intended target of the shooting was not hit although he sustained minor injuries during his attempt to flee, The Sun reported.

Reports say the driver of the SUV and two passengers from the vehicle survived the crash. The driver has been identified as Ronald Lewis, 26. The surviving passengers identified were reported to be Shonte Turner, 18, and Jackson Kendrick, 23, according to Highland Community News. 

A fourth, female passenger was also in the vehicle, according to The Sun. San Bernardino Police Lt. David Green said the woman has not been arrested but is being investigated. 

Lewis, Turner and Kendrick were reported to have fled the scene of the collision on foot but were later found at local hospitals where they were seeking treatment for injuries suffered in the crash. According to Lt. Richard Lawhead, all were arrested. 

Both Lewis and Jackson were booked into the San Bernardino County Jail. Lewis was booked for suspicion of attempted murder, vehicular manslaughter and hit-and-run with injury, KTLA reported. Kendrick was booked under the charge of suspicion of attempted murder.

In a news release, Lawhead announced officers found two handguns near the scene of the collision. According to Lawhead, the suspects as well as the intended victim of the drive-by shooting, all have ties to local rival gangs, KTLA reported. 

Investigations of both the shooting as well as the traffic collision are ongoing, according to Highland Community News.

Source: KTLA, Highland Community News, The Sun / Photo credit: Screenshot KTLA via Newspro News