SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY (CBS13) — San Joaquin County deputies said they’ve tracked down a man who’s been randomly firing a shotgun at passing drivers.
Javier Rivera, 39, eluded deputies for months and it was two of his latest victims that ultimately secured his arrest this week. He’s been charged with multiple felonies including attempted murder.READ MORE: Homemade Pipe Bomb Found In Front Of South Sacramento Elementary School
River Road, south of Escalon, is the last known area where Javier Rivera opened fire on drivers.
“They’re driving in there, minding their own business, and they don’t even know where it came from, who did it or why they did it,” said Sandra Mendez, a spokesperson for the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office.
Somehow, no one has been injured and the sheriff’s office is not sure how many victims there are at this point.
“I don’t know what was on this man’s mind or what would make him do something like that to people,” said Patricia, a woman who lives nearby one of Rivera’s crime scenes.
Deputies believe Rivera is the man responsible for multiple random shootings in the last several months, usually using the same gun. But no one could ever get a solid description of him or his car.
“At one point someone was pulled over to see what just hit me and when they got out of their car, this person proceeded to continue to shoot at them,” Mendez said.READ MORE: Sutter Health Short On Vaccines As Blue Shield Takes Over Distribution
Deputies finally caught up to Rivera on Tuesday, when he shot at three vehicles on River Road. Two of the victims involved not only identified Rivera but also the white sedan he was driving.
“Based on that information alone, detectives started doing a search in our system from previous contacts with that type of a vehicle in that area and they came across one vehicle and the person that it belonged to,” Mendez said.
It was Javier Rivera. A man with a lengthy criminal history, whose prior busts led to his latest capture.
Deputies say Rivera had a pistol-sized 12-gauge, double-barrel shotgun – as well as a sawed-off pump-action shotgun – in his possession. Rivera reportedly admitted to the three shootings on Tuesday.
Deputies describe Rivera as transitory, meaning it’s highly possible he crossed multiple county lines to commit shooting crimes. San Joaquin County said they’re talking to other jurisdictions and there’s still a lot to uncover in this investigation.
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Rivera has been booked into jail and is facing attempted murder, felon in possession of a firearm, shooting at occupied vehicles, and other charges.