Police killed a man last week in Southern California after he opened fire on a SWAT team dispatched to pursue his vehicle on an eastbound highway, officials said.
A man identified as Austin Edwards, 28, was wanted in connection with a triple murder in the nearby city of Riverside and was considered armed and dangerous. according to to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office.
Edwards is charged with murder Mary Weink, 69, Shirley Weink, 65, and Brooke Weink, 38, were at a house in the blaze in the La Sierra neighborhood of Riverside by the time police arrived, CBS Los Angeles reported.Authorities believe that Edwards kidnapped a teenage girl From home after committing a horrific crime that took the lives of her grandfather, grandmother and mother.
According to CBS Los Angeles, she was not harmed during the police pursuit of Edwards and was placed in protective custody.
San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department officers believe Edwards was involved in an online catfish phishing scheme targeting teenagers, as the station reported. After getting the girl, he moved from his home in Northchesterfield, Virginia to California to track down the girl.
According to CBS LA, Riverside Police Chief Larry Gonzalez said, “This is a terrifying memory of predators that exist online preying on our children.” Protect them better. “
Police say Edwards was found driving a red Kia Soul on Highway 247 last Friday night. The vehicle matched descriptions of the vehicle linked to a triple murder in La Sierra, so the Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol air force pursued the Kia from a distance until a SWAT team came close, they said. officials said.
As Edwards began moving east on Route 62, a SWAT team intercepted Edwards’ car. At that point, the suspect fled, then opened fire on officers and crashed into a SWAT vehicle multiple times. The car chase ended when Edwards “lost control” of his vehicle and pulled off the road, the agency said, and Edwards got out of his Kia Soul and fired at officers, who killed him. added that it was. He was pronounced dead at the scene and an autopsy will be performed to formally determine the cause of death.
By the time Edwards was killed, the boy had already been rescued by police, the sheriff’s office said.
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