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2 suspects arrested in road rage incident that led to shooting in Mesa

Mesa Country Club Drive and Rio Salado Shooting 1-27
Posted at 11:40 AM, Jan 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-28 22:03:46-05

MESA, AZ — Two men have been arrested in connection with a road rage incident that led to a woman being shot in Mesa on Monday night.

According to court documents, two women were in a white BMW SUV headed northbound on Cherry and turned eastbound onto Rio Salado Parkway when they had initial contact with the suspects.

Andres Nunez told police he was driving east on Rio Salado when the victims turned onto the roadway, nearly striking his car with him, his brother and his brother's girlfriend inside. According to court paperwork, the driver of the BMW said as they were driving, the occupants inside the Toyota sedan began yelling and attempting to hit the pair's SUV.

As the two cars continued down Rio Salado, Nunez reportedly stopped in front of the victim's SUV just west of the intersection at Country Club Drive.

Nunez's brother Arturo then got out of their vehicle, as did the women inside the SUV, and all three began arguing.

Court documents stated that during the confrontation, Arturo was heard yelling "west side," while showing the victims his hands in the shape of a 'W.'" He then reportedly began banging the hood of the victims' SUV, and the women also began hitting the hood of Andres' vehicle.

According to police, Andres and Arturo's girlfriend then got out of the sedan and began approaching the victims. The BMW driver reportedly told her fiance to get back in the vehicle because they were "outnumbered," but Arturo pushed the BMW passenger onto the ground and the driver got back into her SUV and attempted to flee.

The woman struck Arturo with her car as she tried to drive away, documents stated. Andres then retrieved a gun from his waistband and opened fire at the woman's SUV, hitting the driver's side door and hitting the victim twice in the leg and once in the shoulder.

Police said it appears 12 rounds were fired in total, with 11 hitting the victim's SUV.

The shooting happened near the parking lot of the ACE Cash Express. ABC15 spoke to a woman who said she heard yelling and then gunshots.

"It was so scary. We closed the door, and I called 911, but when I called 911 the police was already here, so everything was so fast," said Daniela Pedraca. "I just was praying that everyone was safe and nobody was hurt."

The driver was taken to the hospital in critical condition Monday night, but her current condition is unclear. Officials initially said the SUV passenger had been struck by gunfire, but later clarified that she received only minor injuries from being pushed to the ground and had not been shot.

In interviews with Mesa officers, Arturo said he grew up in the West Valley near the known "Phoeniquera gang area," and displayed a "WS" tattoo, representing his "west side" gang ties. Arturo told police after he'd been struck by the victim's vehicle, he heard loud bangs and stated his brother must have opened fire.

Police said Andres admitted to getting out of his car and confronting the women, as well as knowing that opening fire could seriously injure or kill the victim.

Arturo is facing charges of gang threats, assisting a criminal street gang, and endangerment.

Police said Andres will be charged with aggravated assault, endangerment, and multiple weapons charges.