HESPERIA – The names of the suspects involved in the officer-involved shooting at the Hesperia Walmart store parking lot on Wednesday morning have been released.
The shooting occurred on Wednesday, May 31, 2017, at around 7:58 a.m. in the parking lot of the Walmart Store located at 13401 Main Street. Authorities said that two San Bernardino County Auto Theft Task Force (SANCATT) officers, one from the Fontana Police Department and California Highway Patrol officer, were investigating a stolen vehicle and witnesses a vehicle theft in progress in the Walmart parking lot. In order to stop the three suspects, the unmarked vehicle blocked in the suspect vehicle to prevent the three suspects from fleeing in the stolen vehicle.
The officers approached the vehicle, which was determined to be stolen Wednesday morning in Victorville and the suspect driver, James Gleason, 24, of Phelan accelerated nearly striking one of the officers. As a result of the threat to the safety of the officers and others in the area, an officer-involved shooting occurred. The vehicle then crashed into one of the unmarked vehicles. Gleason and the front passenger, identified as Alexander Herd, 31, of Phelan were both struck by gunfire. Gleason died at a local hospital and Herd was transported to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center and has since been released and was booked into jail for Burglary. The third suspect, Austin Banuelos, 22, of Phelan was not injured and was booked into the High Desert Detention Center for receiving stolen property. No officers were injured.
The Sheriff’s Department Specialized Investigation Division – Homicide Detail is conducting the investigation. This investigation in ongoing and anyone with information regarding this investigation is urged to contact the Specialized Investigation Division, Detective Chuck Phillips at (909) 387-3589 or WE Tip at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at www.wetip.com.
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