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Wednesday, October 29, 2014 - 1:34pm

Marine linked to deadly Texas shooting spree, body in NC motel room

Marine linked to deadly Texas shooting spree, body in NC motel room
MGN Online
News
Monday, May 27, 2013 - 6:03pm

 A Marine who went on a deadly shooting spree across two Texas counties before being killed in a firefight has also been linked to a woman found dead in a North Carolina motel room, officials said.

Authorities gave no motive for Sunday’s rampage by Esteban J. Smith, 23, who was stationed at Camp Lejeune, N.C., according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

It began about 4:30 a.m. local time when Smith, who was driving a pickup truck, opened fire on a vehicle in Eden, Texas, wounding an unidentified woman, police said.

He then made his way to a convenience store in Brady, in McCulloch County, where he shot and injured two people as they sat in their vehicle, police said. They were treated and released.

The gunman then turned around and headed back to Eden, where he fired at another vehicle at about 5:30 a.m. That victim was also treated and released.

Just after 6 a.m., Concho County sheriff's deputies responding to a call of shots fired in Eola found Alicia Torres, 41, dead in her car.

About 15 minutes later, Sheriff Richard Doane caught up with the truck north of Eden on U.S. Highway 83. As state troopers arrived to assist, Smith fired and wounded Doane, officials said.

That sparked a shootout in which a state trooper and a game warden exchanged gunfire with the suspect, who was killed, officials said. He was armed with an assault-style rifle, a handgun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

Several hours after the Texas bloodshed, a woman was found in a motel room in Jacksonville, N.C., about 20 miles from Camp Lejeune. It was unclear how or when the woman died.

A spokesman for Camp said a 23-year-old Marine was connected to both incidents, NBC station WITN reported. Base officials did not return calls from NBC News.

Beth Purcell, a spokeswoman for the Jacksonville Police Department, said no further information would be released until Tuesday.

 

ORIGINAL STORY: A man went on an early morning shooting spree across two Texas counties Sunday, killing a woman and injuring five other people — one of them the Concho County sheriff — before dying in a shootout with law enforcement, authorities said.

At least nine state and local agencies chased the man — a 23-year-old North Carolina resident whose name wasn't released because his family hadn't been notified — for almost two hours, as he opened fire from his pickup truck on random cars across McCulloch and Concho counties, near San Angelo in central Texas.

The shooter eventually died in a gunfire exchange with a state trooper and a game warden on a highway north of the town of Eden, the state Department of Public Safety said. That was when authorities discovered that he'd been armed with an assault-style rifle, a handgun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.

The victims included Alicia Torres, 41, who was shot to death in her car in the town of Eola, and Concho County Sheriff Richard Doane, who was being treated for non-life-threatening injuries at Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo.

Investigators pieced together this timeline of events:

The gunman first opened fire about 4:30 a.m. local time (5:30 a.m. ET) on a vehicle in the Eden area of Concho County, hitting a woman who remained in Shannon Medical Center on Sunday night. Her condition wasn't reported.

He then made his way to a convenience story in Brady, in McCulloch County, where he shot and injured two people as they sat in their vehicle. They were treated and released.

The gunman then turned around and headed back to Eden, where he fired at another vehicle at about 5:30 a.m. That victim was also treated and released.

Just after 6 a.m., Concho County sheriff's deputies responding to a call of shots fired in Eola found Torres dead in her car.

About 15 minutes later, Doane, the sheriff, caught up with the truck north of Eden on U.S. Highway 83. As state troopers arrived to assist, the suspect fired and wounded Doane.

That started the shootout, with a state trooper and a game warden who'd showed up to help exchanging gunfire with the suspect. The man was shot and died at the scene, authorities said.

No other details were released. Investigators would say only that they were reviewing "multiple crime scenes." 

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