Police Search For Suspects In I-295 Pellet Gun Shootings

May 16, 2016

Credit Alejandro Mejia Greene / Flickr Creative Commons

JACKSONVILLE — A Chevrolet Aveo was involved in a rollover crash Saturday night after it was shot at on I-295 near Philips Highway, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Troopers later confirmed the shots fired were from a pellet gun, and the pellets never penetrated the windows of the victim's car. They said no pellets were found. 

Police said someone in an unknown vehicle fired several shots from the passenger side and struck the driver's side of the Aveo at 10:28 p.m.

The driver of the Aveo, a 27-year old man from St. Augustine, ran his vehicle off the road and onto the shoulder to avoid the gunfire. His vehicle struck a light pole and flipped several times. He had three passengers with him, a 22-year old man, a 27-year old woman and a 27-year-old man.

News4Jax spoke to the driver of the Aveo and another woman who was in the car. They provided pictures of the crash but asked not to be identified.

All four victims in the car were hurt, but their injuries were described as minor.

Earlier Saturday night, a Chevrolet Trailblazer and Toyota Sienna were shot at in the area of I-295, near Gate Parkway, FHP said.

Officials told News4Jax the same vehicle might have fired shots in all three incidents.  

News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith said it will be difficult to track down the shooter or shooters, given there was no vehicle description.

"I'm sure they'll try to locate the shooters and try to locate the vehicle through the (Department of Transportation) cameras that may be there on the highway, if they had DOT cameras there in the area," Smith said. "I'm sure what FHP will be doing right now is talking to the witnesses, talking to the occupants of the three cars to see if they can get some consistent identification of the suspect vehicle."

Anyone with any information about the shooter's vehicle is asked to contact the Florida Highway Patrol at 904- 695-4115.