World Media

Gunman's motive unknown in deadly Riverside shootout

Officers in shootout near Riverside Calif. freeway

One of the California Highway Patrol officers shot during a shootout in Riverside Monday evening has died while two others remain hospitalized, according to KABC.

Scott Parker of the California Highway Patrol told the media that a CHP officer had pulled over a white GMC and had chose to impound the truck at around 5:30 p.m.

California Highway Patrol Officer Andre Moye, Jr., was getting ready to impound Aaron Luther's pickup truck when Luther, who was outside the vehicle and not restrained, reached inside, pulled out a rifle and started shooting on an overpass to the 215 Freeway in Riverside. "One of our officers succumbed to the injuries sustained".

"We know his motive for this crime", Riverside Police Chief Sergio Diaz said Monday night. Investigators were still gathering evidence at the scene Tuesday morning.

In an interview, his devastated stepmother, Debbie Howard, said: "He was so kind". CHP Inland Division Chief Bill Dance said it's not clear whether Moye asked a dispatcher to seek any additional information on Luther, 49, who was convicted of attempted murder in 1994 and also had convictions for assault, domestic violence, unlawful possession of a firearm and battery. Their first encounter with each other happened when Moye was training to be a motor officer. Newsom's office also confirmed that Capitol flags will be flown at half-staff.

Citing law enforcement sources, the Los Angeles Times reported that Aaron Luther was a member of the Vagos motorcycle gang and had a criminal record dating back to the 1990s. "I told my kids to get down and duck but they couldn't, their seatbelts were on", she said.

Dennis Luther of Riverside said he watched the shootout on television.

California Governor Gavin Newsom said in a statement on Facebook: "Jennifer and I extend our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and fellow officers grieving the tragic loss of Officer Moye, who will be remembered for his commitment to serving the Riverside County community and the people of California".

"I don't believe that, knowing him as well as I know him", he said.

"She said she heard 'pop, pop, pop. gunfire, and then a bullet went through the windshield of her vehicle", Luther said of his son's wife.

In the auto behind was retired marine Charles Childress, 56, who saw that a bullet had gone through Moctezuma's windshield, and helped them to safety, crawling with them under a nearby bridge.

The gun battle broke out near Interstate 215 after Moye pulled a man over driving a white pickup truck.

"He's my hero", Moctezuma said.

"He engaged our officer with multiple gunshots", Parker said. "So I don't know what overcame him".

Authorities did not immediately say what prompted the officer to stop and impound the truck.

Luther told ABC7 his son had served 10 years in prison for attempted murder and was released more than a decade ago but recently suffered from depression and a knee injury.