Officials seek motive after 3 arrested in 2-state rampage

One person killed at Henderson convenience store

Associated Press
December 01, 2020 - 4:59 am

Photo Courtesy: USA Today

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Las Vegas, NV (AP) — Authorities say three people arrested after a vehicle crash and trooper-involved shooting in Arizona are believed to also be responsible for several Thanksgiving shootings in Henderson, including one that killed a man at a convenience store.

No motive was immediately given by Henderson police, who on Monday identified the suspects arrested near the Colorado River town of Parker, Arizona, as Shawn McDonnell, 30; Christopher McDonnell, 28; and Kayleigh Lewis, 25.

La Paz County Sheriff Bill Risen did not immediately respond to messages about the trio, including Shawn McDonnell, who officials said was hospitalized with wounds that were not believed to be life-threatening. He is accused of pointing a gun at Arizona state Department of Public Safety troopers approaching the wrecked vehicle.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson told the Las Vegas Review Journal that  the three were from Tyler, Texas, and that investigators were trying to determine what sparked the rampage.

“I believe they were primarily random shootings, but more information will come out in the near future about why they chose to shoot at particular people,” the prosecutor told the newspaper. “We plan on filing the appropriate charges at the appropriate time.”

Police and court records did not identify defense attorneys who could immediately comment on behalf of the suspects.

The Arizona Department of Public Safety said Christopher McDonnell and Lewis also were hospitalized for treatment of injuries received in the crash near the small town of Bouse.

The coroner in Las Vegas on Monday identified the 22-year-old man fatally wounded at the convenience store as Kevin Mendiola Jr. of North Las Vegas.

Police did not identify three people who were wounded. They said witnesses described two men with guns and a woman leaving in a dark-colored vehicle with a Texas license plate. Police corrected initial reports that five people had been shot, including four wounded.

Vehicle and suspect descriptions in the incidents in both states matched, officials said.

The Review-Journal, citing a police report, said several people escaped injury during four other shootings reported before about 1 a.m. Thursday on freeways and roads in the Henderson area.

At the convenience store, witnesses and video evidence showed a man with possible tattoos on his face firing a handgun. His facial markings were described as “stitching to resemble a skeleton.” The report said he was accompanied by a woman with a dark discoloration under her left eye.

In Arizona, the state Department of Public Safety reported several shootings and a vehicle chase before the crash near Bouse.