Mojave Desert Shooting

October 26, 2013 by  

Mojave Desert Shooting, A sister of a survivor in the Ridgecrest rampage says the gunman was a heroin dealer who wanted to eliminate snitches.

Dawn Meier told The Associated Press on Friday that 39-year-old Sergio Munoz was friends with her brother, but shot him and his girlfriend when the brother refused to go along with the plot.

The girlfriend was killed in the early morning shooting. Dawn Meier says her brother, Thaddeus Meier, is recovering at a hospital.

Munoz later took a man and woman hostage and led police on a lengthy car chase with the pair in his trunk.

Authorities say Munoz was killed when he stopped on the side of the road and began firing his gun into the trunk.

Police say the hostages are in critical condition.

A gunman fatally shot a woman, injured a man and then led police on a wild chase through the Mojave Desert with two hostages in his trunk before he was killed in a shootout with police.

Ridgecrest police were investigating the shooting scene shortly after 5 a.m. Friday when an officer got a call on his cellphone from the suspect, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said at a press conference. The suspect said he wanted to deliver a package to police and kill officers but, because he would be outgunned, he would “wreak havoc” elsewhere.

Police now believe the “package” the gunman had for them was the hostages, Youngblood said.

Nearly two hours later, a sheriff’s deputy spotted the suspect’s car and a pursuit began over roughly 30 miles of highway, through arid stretches of desert. The suspect ran traffic off the road, firing at least 10 times from inside his black Dodge Dart with a shotgun and a handgun. No motorists were hurt, Youngblood said.

At one point during the chase, which lasted more than 40 minutes, the suspect pulled over and the car’s trunk popped open, revealing a man and woman inside. They appeared to shut the trunk, the sheriff said. It’s unclear if he opened the trunk or if they opened it from inside. The man then got back in the car and continued driving.

At some point, the man told pursuing officers, “‘I’m going to shoot them,'” Youngblood said.

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