DPS Director: Merritt is still the I-10 suspect

Posted at 11:11 AM, Apr 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-29 18:59:02-04

In a rare moment since the string of freeway shootings in 2015, DPS Director Frank Milstead addressed the media.

Milstead said on Friday morning he believes Leslie Merritt Jr. is still the freeway shootings suspect. He went on to say that the Arizona Department of Public Safety has enough probable cause to prove Merritt is the suspect.

Milstead also said that be believes Interstate 10 is safe. (Watch the entire interview with Milstead in the video player above)

"I believe we have enough evidence to develop probable cause to believe that [Leslie Merritt Jr.] is the correct suspect"

The direct quote from Milstead states, "I believe we have enough evidence to develop probable cause to believe that [Leslie Merritt Jr.] is the correct suspect."

RELATED: 30 questions: Have we seen new freeway shootings in Phoenix since Leslie Merritt Jr. was in jail?

All of the charges against Merritt were dropped on April 25.

Merritt was arrested in September and indicted on 15 felony counts in connection with several of the 11 confirmed shootings which happened on Valley freeways last year. DPS officials said they had ballistic evidence tying him to four shooting incidents on Interstate 10 which happened between August 27 and 29.

Merritt entered a plea of not guilty, and his lawyers have challenged the strength of the state's evidence against him, pointing out officials altered the timeline of when they occurred, and accused DPS of lying to witnesses and withholding evidence .

Merritt and his lawyers filed a lawsuit last month against the State of Arizona, Maricopa County, Gov. Doug Ducey and Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery for $10 million in compensation for lost wages, legal fees and emotional stress .