UPDATE: Quadruple murder “worst mass-killing” in Palm Springs history: officials
UPDATED: Wednesday, Feb. 6, 11 a.m., With additional details.
PALM SPRINGS — Authorities from multiple law enforcement agencies, special teams, and task forces, are assisting Palm Springs PD with what is believed to have possibly been a quadruple homicide late Sunday, Feb 3. Palm Springs Police Chief Bryan Reyes said during a news conference yesterday afternoon that the murders, which involved three teens and an adult at two different locations, were possibly the “worst mass-killing” Palm Springs had ever seen.
“At this point, we are actively investigating the two incidents in an attempt to determine if they are related based upon their timing and proximity” Reyes explained at yesterday’s conference, which can be viewed below.
LEADING THE DESERT HEADLINES:
Three of the victims killed were discovered on Sunny Dunes Rd., east of El Placer Rd., after officials responded to multiple reports of a traffic collision involving a small, green sedan. Responding officers found three deceased victims, all of whom sustained gunshot injuries. The trio found in the car were all teens and ranged from 17 to 19-years-old, according to Chief Reyes.
The fourth victim was a 25-year-old man, who was found laying face-down in the roadway about a half-mile away, near the intersection of Theresa Rd., south of Canon Dr., Reyes explained.
None of the victims have been publicly identified, pending further investigation and notification of the victims’ families.
Reyes said in yesterday’s press conference that PSPD has a suspect in custody “on unrelated charges,” but have not yet identified their “person of interest” in the homicides. Reyes also said that it is not clear at this time if the gunshot wounds caused the deaths of the four victims and that post-mortem examinations are scheduled for all four victims.
PSPD was first alerted to the murders around 11:40 p.m., Sunday evening, when they received at least three 911 calls reporting of a single-vehicle traffic collision on Sunny Dunes Rd., east of El Placer Rd.
Officers arrived at the scene of the crash “within three minutes,” and found the vehicle was occupied by three teenagers, including one female driver and two male passengers. Officials determined all three victims sustained gunshot injuries, and “all three occupants inside the vehicle were pronounced deceased on scene,” Reyes later explained.
About 35 minutes later, while officers were beginning their investigation into the first collision and victims’ deaths, PSPD received a report of a man laying face-down in the road on Canon Dr. south of Theresa Dr., Reyes said In Tuesday’s news conference. Responding officers arrived within two minutes of the dispatched call and found that the man had sustained at least one gunshot wound and had succumbed to his injuries before officers arrived.
SEE OTHER RECENT DESERT-AREA HEADLINES:
Based on the circumstances, timing, and proximity between the two shootings, PSPD detectives assumed the investigation. With assistance from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, Gang Impact Team, Riverside County’s District Attorney’s Office, and The East County Post-Release Accountability, and Compliance Team, “officers have worked around the clock investigating two homicide locations involving four victims,” Reyes explained.
Chief Reyes has asked that anyone living in the area of Canon Dr. and E. Sunny Dunes Rd. who may have street view surveillance cameras to review their footage on Feb. 3, from about 11:20 p.m. until Feb. 4 at about 1 a.m.
Anyone with any information that could potentially assist with this investigation or anyone who believes they may have witnessed or filmed either of these incidents, is encouraged to immediately contact PSPD at (760) 323-8136. Callers can refer to incident file number 1902P-0624 and can remain anonymous. Tips can also be reported anonymously to Crime Stoppers at (760) 341-7867
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Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.