Mineral County police received a shots-fired call from the Walker River reservation in Schurz at 9:38 p.m. on May 3. The incident reported to the dispatcher involved the drive-by shooting of a home located at 2817 Sunset Rd.
The party who suffered the home shooting made the call. The caller had an infant inside the residence.
The caller also attempted to follow the car whose passengers did the shooting, but dispatch dissuaded the woman from doing so. She was also unaware whether gunfire from the suspects actually hit her home. Police later found the home had numerous bullet holes on the outside.
Other calls filtered in to dispatch regarding the shots. Apparently, the suspects fired the shots in retaliation for a domestic dispute among the parties some time earlier.
The male suspect, a man named Martinez, is an ex-felon from California. Martinez apparently got involved in the drive-by at the instigation of a woman who was involved in the earlier domestic dispute.
According to Mineral County Sheriff Steward Handte, the couple drove by the victim’s house and fired numerous rounds out the window and hitting the house numerous times. The bullets hit no one.
The suspects attempted to flee the scene and “blacked” out their car in an attempt to remain undetected. This act eventually led to the capture of the suspects.
After the suspects fled the scene in utter darkness, they failed to see a curve in the road. Their failure to negotiate the curve resulted in a rollover crash.
The couple then fled that scene on foot. Police who found the vehicle also discovered a quantity of blood inside the car, leading the police to believe one or both of the suspects sustained injuries.
Handte, involved with the incident by phone, suggested calling Mineral County Search and Rescue to the scene to help locate the fugitives. Handte also had the idea of getting other agencies involved.
“I asked if we could get allied agencies involved because we have a car crash, we have a drive-by, we have a weapon involved and we have people hurt. We don’t know how dangerous these people are, whether they’re capable of entering a residence and taking hostages—we needed to get everyone and their brother rolling,” Handte said
“We got Search and Rescue involved and we got Fallon Tribal (Police) involved. We received a phone call at 11:39 p.m. by a man who said the suspects were holed up at a residence located at 1425 Colony Drive like right now,” Handte said.
“While everyone’s trying to get things set up, (Mineral County) deputy Leslie and sergeant Charley (spelling) surround the residence and close the radio channel and they were able to get inside the house. They took the male and female suspects into custody,” Handte said.
“The female suspect was arrested and lodged in the Lyon County jail as she is a tribal member. Martinez was first lodged in the Mineral County jail, but, as he was later determined to be Native American, he was transported to Lyon County jail in Yerington as well,” Handte said. “We don’t have any inter-local agreement with the tribe at this time to house their inmates. The only way we can do that is if BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs) comes down to inspect our jail and finds us suitable. That’s something we’re working on and trying to get done.”
“Two people, because of a domestic situation that happened some time ago, decided they would extract their revenge by means of a drive-by. Through the grace of God, no one was injured or killed because everyone knows wood doesn’t stop bullets,” Handte said. “Anyone who says Mineral County is a sleepy little county, that nothing happens here—I beg to differ.”