Police are searching for whoever shot a man who crashed his vehicle outside an ARCO station in Pomona Thursday morning — an incident the victim's family has described as an attempted armed robbery.
The incident was reported about 12:30 a.m. in the 800 block of Rio Rancho Avenue, according to a news release from the Pomona Police Department. While authorities have not identified the victim, his family has identified him as Daylon Walker, 22.
Police said he remained in critical condition Thursday night.
He had been inside the ARCO station purchasing items and then left the store, a witness at the scene said.
About five minutes later, the witness recalled hearing four to five shots and then went outside to see a car slowly driving across the parking lot and then crashing near a pump.
Officers arrived to find Walker inside the vehicle suffering from at least one gunshot wound, police said.
Surveillance video from the gas station shows a man wearing a white shirt walking out of a car, who police are looking to speak with.
KTLA spoke with Walker's family, who said he had been able to tell them what happened from his hospital bed.
His brother, Damon Felder said a stranger had asked Daylon for money. Then, as was leaving the gas station, Daylon was shot several times by an unknown assailant.
According to Damon, his brother had told the man, "I’m sorry, I don’t have my wallet, I don’t have change." The man allegedly replied, "Well I’m going to take whatever you’ve got," while pulling out a gun.
The bullets were fired while Daylon was in his car, driving away, Damon said. In surveillance video from the station, he can be seen waving his arms for help out the car's window as the sedan slowly comes to a rest against a barrier.
Daylon can also be seen opening the driver’s side door, but is unable to get out. Damon said that’s because one of the bullets shattered his vertebrae.
“I mean, it travelled through both lungs, barely missing the spinal cord,” he said. “But you could see the hole where the vertebra’s at. The hole through the vertebrate — you could see it.”
The bullet also only missed his heart by an inch, Damon said.
On a GoFundMe page posted by the Walker family, Daylon is described as a college wrestler who graduated from Diamond Ranch High School as a scholar athlete of the year. He is currently a full-time student at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, the page states.
But now the wrestling standout may never compete or walk again, his family said.
“I feel like he could have made it to the Olympics if he had an opportunity to,” his brother said.
Walker attended Dixie State University for two years, becoming nationally ranked as a wrestler there, according to the GoFundMe page. But he recently moved back home to serve as a caregiver for his stepfather, who had a misdiagnosed arm injury that led to him being paralyzed from the waist down after several surgeries on his spinal cord.
Investigators have not released a possible motive for the shooting.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Police Department at 909-620-2085. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call L.A. Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
KTLA's Erika Martin and Marissa Wenzke contributed to this report.