Bullets Hit Two Cars in Tempe Shooting

UPDATE: An 18-year-old man, Ivan Dominguez, and 15-year-old boy were arrested late Thursday evening in connection with the shootings, Tempe police announced just before 10 p.m. A third juvenile was present at the time of the shootings, but didn't shoot the gun and wasn't charged. Click here for the latest article on this incident.

An unknown shooter targeted two cars on a Tempe street on Wednesday night, Tempe police say, injuring no one but sparking a call to the public for information.

The shootings come several months after Governor Doug Ducey famously tweeted "We got him!" following the arrest of a suspect accused of terrorizing mostly Interstate 10 drivers over the summer. Leslie Allen Merritt of Glendale remains behind bars, charged with more than a dozen counts related to the shootings.

In the latest incidents, someone shot at two vehicles traveling southbound on Kyrene Road between Baseline Road and U.S. 60 about 7:45 p.m. Both drivers fled the area and called police "within minutes of each other," says Tempe Lieutenant Michael Pooley.

"One of the vehicles was occupied with three young children, the bullet striking inches away from one of them," he says. Pooley tells New Times that the shootings appear to be random.

Evidence of the shootings was found in each vehicle, but police couldn't find the shooter.

At least one bullet casing was recovered, but police aren't yet releasing the caliber of the firearm.

Along Kyrene Road in that area, a mobile home park is on the west side of the street and a dirt railroad easement on the east, with railroad tracks and industrial buildings beyond that.

The shooter apparently aimed at the front of each vehicle. A shot passed through the front windshield of the first, nearly hitting an 8-year-old boy, Pooley says.

"It literally hits within inches of his head," he says, adding that he had just spoken with the rattled father. The man "said he didn't see anything, any muzzle flash, or other vehicle." 

A minute or two later, the shooter's bullet struck the front of another car.

Anyone with information is asked to call detectives at 480-350-8311 or 480-WITNESS.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.
Contact: Ray Stern