Police have detained a man who they believe may have ties to a string of freeway shootings that have rattled Phoenix over the past two weeks.
It’s not clear whether the man detained Friday after he was arrested at a convenience store near Interstate 10 is the only person of interest. The shooting scenarios have varied, said a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety. Some shootings involved bullets fired at random cars, others involved projectiles — possibly BBs or pellets — and one was apparently road rage, spokesman Bart Graves said.
Phoenix drivers have been unnerved since the shootings began Aug. 29, mostly along Interstate 10, a major route through the city. Many drivers have avoided freeways since then. Eight of the cars were hit with bullets and three with projectiles that could have been BBs or pellets. One girl’s ear was cut by glass as a bullet shattered her window.
In a press release, the Department of Public Safety identified the man detained on Friday a 19-year-old from a Phoenix suburb. The department would not provide more information linking him to the shootings other than to say he was being questioned and that he had been booked into jail on an unrelated possession of marijuana charge.
Graves had said earlier Friday that investigators were questioning the man “about a number of things” besides the freeway shootings, but he declined to disclose what that entailed.
There have been a dozen incidents reported over the past two weeks, but thankfully there have been no fatalities, and the only injury is a girl hit by flying glass.
Update: The man has now been released, without being charged with the shootings.
A man questioned in a string of Phoenix freeway shootings is not the prime suspect and investigators are pressing ahead with leads in a case that has left the city on edge for two weeks, authorities said Saturday.