A gunman being sought in the fatal shooting of a bail bondsman at a Moreno Valley hotel earlier this week was killed during a shootout with SWAT officers in San Bernardino Thursday.
Riverside County deputies went to a Days Inn in San Bernardino in the morning to search for 41-year-old Chad Green of Riverside, according to San Bernardino police, who are investigating Thursday's shooting. Green was wanted on a warrant in connection with the death of James Black.
Black, a 42-year-old Lake Elsinore man, was found Tuesday evening suffering from a gunshot wound at a hotel on Sunnymead Boulevard. He died after being taken to the hospital.
Investigators say Black had been working to apprehend Green, tracked him to the hotel and was then shot.
Black’s family described him as a fugitive recovery agent and Marine veteran who served in Iraq on a GoFundMe page set up to raise funds for his funeral.
He left behind a wife and five children ranging in age from 2 to 22. The eldest, Austin, followed his father's footsteps in joining the Marines.
The victim's wife, Michelle Black, told reporters Thursday that his passing has "been very difficult to accept."
"We’re still trying to process everything,” she said. “He was a great man. He was a great father. He was an amazing investigator.”
The bounty hunter's "primary goal in life was to take care of his family," his wife said, "and he sacrificed a lot to make that happen."
Riverside County deputies called San Bernardino police around 10:15 a.m. Thursday to request assistance in the homicide investigation, Police Sgt. John Echevarria said. The sergeant added that San Bernardino County deputies were also at the scene.
By 11:30 a.m., multiple shots had been fired in the parking lot of the Days Inn at 1909 Business Center Drive, near the 10 and 215 freeways.
Hotel staff said deputies had been camped out, waiting for the suspect to leave his room.
When he did emerge, the suspect ran, and authorities believed he was armed, Echevarria said.
It's unclear what exactly led up to the fatal gunfire, but Riverside County confirmed its SWAT officers were involved in the shooting.
Video from the scene showed a bullet-ridden sedan with at least one window shot out.
One man staying at the hotel described the shots as "rapid fire."
"I couldn't count them," he told KTLA. "I usually can count them, but I could use your hands and mine to count them shots. They shot his car up pretty bad."
After that, officials "drug him out, laid him on his back, and that was it," the witness said.
Investigators say they found two firearms in the suspect's possession, and they also planned to search a room he was renting at the hotel.
Bystanders said a woman who exited an upstairs hotel room with Green pleaded with him to surrender, but he would not. Deputies confirmed that a woman who was with the suspect was detained for questioning.
Detectives have yet to release information on what Green was suspected of when Black began tracking him. Court documents for a man with Green's name show a lengthy criminal record with two felony convictions, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reported.