Story Summary

NoHo Man Killed in Road-Rage Shooting

Police are looking for the man that shot and killed Richard Ruiz, 22, in a road-rage incident in Arleta on July 13.

Story Timeline
Previous Next
This story has 3 updates

Police have issued an arrest warrant for a San Fernando Valley gang member suspected of killing a young driver in a road-rage incident earlier this year.

arleta-road-rage-green-eyes-2

Luis Alberto Guitierrez, suspected in the road-rage death of a 22-year-old driver, is shown here in a booking photo from a previous arrest. (Credit: Los Angeles Police Department)

Luis Alberto Gutierrez, Jr., 24, was named as suspect in the July 13 Arleta slaying, the Los Angeles Police Department announced Thursday.

He had been “on the run” since investigators began asking questions about him in early August, police said.

The incident occurred at 3 p.m. on Branford Avenue when three men in a red Kia — who were on their way to play basketball — were approached by a gray Dodge Challenger in the right lane, LAPD officials said.

Gutierrez — known as “Green Eyes” in his street gang, according to police — was identified by passengers of the Kia, who recalled a man with “striking green eyes” behind the wheel of the Challenger.

Police say the suspect took out a gun while driving and fired a single shot into the Kia, hitting its driver, 22-year-old Richard Ruiz, in the neck.

Ruiz was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead later that day.

“Our victim was a nice kid, with no gang ties or criminal history,” Lt. Paul Vernon said in a news release.  “He and his friends were on their way to play basketball that afternoon when Gutierrez decided to rage for no good reason.”

LAPD officials received a tip about Gutierrez’s identity from his boss, which they say “broke the case open.”

Gutierrez had worked at a North Hollywood business and began “acting aloof” and changing his appearance in the days after the shooting, his employer told police.

“As soon as we started inquiring about Gutierrez (at his workplace), he abandoned his job and has been on the run ever since,” Lt. Paul Vernon said.

Detectives believe Gutierrez is still in the Southern California area but think he is likely making trips back and forth to Mexico. The suspect was on probation for carrying a loaded gun and had missed appointments with his probation officer, according to police.

Anyone with information was asked to call LAPD Detective Ryan Verna at 818-838-9976. Anonymous tips can also be made by calling 800-222-8477 (TIPS) or texting 274637 (CRIMES).

ARLETA, Calif. (KTLA) — Police on Wednesday released two sketches of a man suspected of fatally shooting another motorist in a road-rage incident in Arleta.

It happened on Saturday, July 13, just after 3 p.m. as the two cars passed under the 5 Freeway at Branford Avenue, police said.

arleta-road-rageThe driver of a gray Dodge Challenger fired a single shot as he passed a red Kia, according to witnesses.

The driver of the Kia, Richard Eduardo Ruiz, 22, of North Hollywood, was hit and died hours later at a local hospital. Two passengers were uninjured.

The two sketches are based on descriptions given to an artist by the passengers, said Lt. Paul Vernon, commanding officer of the Mission Detective Division.

“The sketches depict the wanted shooter who is in his early 20s, with distinctly green eyes,” Vernon said.

Detectives have received several tips on the Dodge Challenger, which was described an RT model with custom rims.

They released the sketches in hopes that someone might recognize the alleged gunman.

Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Ryan Verna, Mission Homicide Unit, at (818) 838-9976.

Anonymous tips can be called into Crimestoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477), or they can be placed online at http://www.LAPDOnline.org.

LOS ANGELES (KTLA) — The search continued Sunday for a man who shot and killed another man during a road-rage incident the previous day in Arleta, authorities said.

Two Hispanic men in separate vehicles were arguing around 3 p.m. Saturday as they traveled westbound on Branford Avenue, just west of the Interstate 5 overpass.

Los Angeles police detectives released an image that shows the two vehicles alongside each other.

“A camera in the area captured the gray Challenger passing the victim’s red Kia on Branford Avenue, just moments before the fatal shot occurred,” Lt. Paul Vernon, commanding officer of the Mission Detective Division, said.

Three men were in the Kia Rio; two men were in the Dodge Challenger.

Witnesses told police that a single shot was fired from the Challenger, hitting the Rio’s 22-year-old driver in the mouth.

The victim was taken to a hospital by his two companions, who were uninjured. He was later transported to a second hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police were seeking the public’s help in identifying the Challenger, whose driver, they said, has green eyes. They did not believe the incident to be gang-related.

Anyone with information regarding the shooting was asked to call Detective Ryan Verna at (818) 838-9976.

Tipsters who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS (8477), or submit tips online at http://www.lacrimestoppers.org.

Advertisement