PRELIMINARY INFORMATION –
On January 20, 2018, at approximately 8:45 PM, YCSO deputies were dispatched to a residence in the 4100 block of West Varmint Road, Chino Valley, regarding a ‘shots fired’ call. Deputies arrived, secured the scene, and detained several individuals. Deputies discovered a 59-year-old man inside a pickup truck parked on the property suffering from a gunshot wound. EMS personnel arrived and confirmed the man in the vehicle had died.
Detectives from the Criminal Investigations Bureau arrived and began the investigation by interviewing 2 involved males and witnesses over the next several hours. A search warrant was obtained for the property and served this morning for evidence gathering purposes.
Initial findings based on statements and evidence: Just before 8:45 PM, the man in the pickup drove onto the Varmint Road property unannounced and his vehicle apparently became stuck in the middle of a garden area. When the resident and another man, both 48-years-old, approached to check on the driver, he fired at least one shot. The two men, both armed at the time, returned fire and struck the driver, killing him. At this time, there is no indication the parties knew each other.
Based on statements from the 2 involved males, witnesses, and an evaluation of evidence so far, self-defense is a factor in the ongoing investigation of these circumstances. As a result, no arrests have been made.
Once the case investigation has concluded, the County Attorney will review the matter to determine if any criminal charges are warranted.
The identity of the deceased is pending notification to his family.