Suspects in Tuesday's police chase, shooting await sentencing
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -
Two suspects involved in a high-speed police chase and shooting in south Lubbock County are still behind bars in Slaton but will be transported to the Lubbock County jail Thursday.
Lubbock County Sheriff's deputies and Slaton police arrested Roberto Rivera, 30, around 1:00 a.m. Wednesday at a home at 49th Street and Avenue X.
Slaton Chief of Police, Steve Wheeler, says the chase began during an attempted traffic stop around 8:00 p.m. That's when police say the female driver, Shelly Blair, 42, took off and started driving at a speed of up to 95 mph. Blair then drove through a stop sign and Rivera began firing shots at the pursuing officers.
The chase ended around 9:00 p.m. in a field on Woodrow Road between University and Indiana Avenue. Officers arrested Blair at the scene while Rivera escaped and fled on foot.
DPS troopers, Slaton PD, LSO K-9 units and a DPS helicopter all assisted in the search for Rivera.
Policed found the gun, which Rivera threw out of the vehicle at the scene where Blair was arrested. Blair has a long list of priors, including charges for theft and forgery. Rivera also has an extensive criminal background involving kidnapping, burglary and drug charges.
Wheeler said there could be a number of reasons why the pair fled. He told us that there was an LPD warrant out on Rivera and he and Blair were both felons in possession of a firearm.
The two suspects are being charged with evading arrest. Rivera is also facing the charge of felon in possession of a firearm and, according to Wheeler, could possibly face more.
Wheeler stated the possibility that when the firearm flew out of the vehicle, it hit a patrol car, causing the shots to fire. He said if that is the case, then the pair would also be charged with deadly conduct.
Wheeler said Rivera will be booked for his outstanding warrant until the investigation is complete and then they will file additional charges with Lubbock District Attorney, Matt Powell.
Area residents said they were taken aback by everything that happened and it was all too close for comfort. According to residents near the scene, they immediately locked their doors and one woman said she and her husband loaded up their guns in preparation to defend themselves.