Sheriff’s Department arrest two Rifle-area brothers
The Mesa County Sheriff’s Department arrested two Rifle-area brothers Saturday in conjunction with the shooting on Orchard Mesa that sent two men to St. Mary’s Hospital late Friday. A third suspect remains at large.
Joshua Ray Perez, 22, was arrested in Rifle on suspicion of criminal attempt to commit murder in the second degree and first-degree assault, stemming from the shooting of two men at 297 Boston Lane. The home is near C Road between 28 and 28 1/2 roads.
His brother, Tommy Lee Perez, 25, was arrested on suspicion of being an accessory to commit murder in the second degree and accessory to commit first-degree assault.
Clinton Waters, 24, was shot three times in the abdomen. Anthony Garcia, 36, who lives at the Boston Lane home, was shot in the thigh and the rib cage. The Sheriff’s Department said both men remained in St. Mary’s Hospital as of Saturday afternoon, but the hospital did not provide updates on their conditions Saturday night.
According to the Sheriff’s Department, Waters, the Perez brothers and another Hispanic man arrived at Garcia’s home in a silver sport utility vehicle during the 9 o’clock hour Friday night.
Garcia let the men into his home, but the violence broke out on the porch about 45 minutes later while the men were smoking cigarettes, according to the arrest affidavit.
Neighbors told deputies they heard five or six gunshots shortly after 10 p.m., and then the SUV sped away from the neighborhood with three of the men in the vehicle.
“There is probable cause to believe Joshua Perez fired five rounds from a .357 magnum handgun at Clinton and Anthony, hitting Clinton three times and Anthony two times,” the arrest affidavit said.
Tommy Perez told investigators that he left the home after an altercation with his brother and had no knowledge of the gun or the shooting. Witnesses disagreed and told deputies Tommy left with his brother Joshua and the other, unidentified man in the SUV.
Investigators interviewed Garcia at the hospital, and Garcia told them two men, whom investigators believe are the Perez brothers, got into fight outside the home, leading one of them to punch the other in the mouth. The one who threw the punch then pulled out a gun and fired it multiple times at Garcia and Waters. Garcia said two of the men ran to the SUV “as if it was set up,” and the
shooter soon followed, and the three drove off, according to the affidavit.
Deputies found a cell phone belonging to Joshua Perez at the scene. Joshua Perez told investigators he had not called Clinton, but the call log showed he had called Waters four times that night, the affidavit said.
At approximately 6 a.m. Saturday, 911 dispatch received a report that a walker found a weapon, a Colt .357-caliber revolver, on the 29 Road bridge on Orchard Mesa. The revolver had .357 shell casings in five of the six chambers of the revolver, and the sixth chamber had a nickel-plated .38-caliber cartridge, according to the affidavit.
When Joshua Perez was searched by deputies Saturday, a film canister in his pocket had a .38 cartridge that was the same type and brand as the one found in the revolver on the bridge, the affidavit said.
Joshua Perez’s father, Jamie Perez, told investigators Saturday at the Rifle Police Department that in the past Joshua owned a .357-caliber revolver.
The block of the dead-end street where the shooting occurred was quiet Saturday evening.
Neighbors, who wished not to be named because law enforcement asked them not to compromise the investigation by sharing details with the media, said Garcia lived at home with his mother.
“There’s excessive traffic in and out of that house,” one neighbor said.
Neighbors that were on the street Friday night supported that observation.
“We’ve been wondering what has been going on down there,” neighbor Ed Mueck said about 30 minutes after the shooting. “A lot of traffic for a dead-end street.”
Mueck said the increased traffic started about six months ago.