One person was shot Thursday afternoon in the City of Santa Maria and taken to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital via Calstar helicopter. The suspect remains on the loose as a police manhunt remains underway. Witness says victim and suspect were fighting over access to a gas pump.
A witness to the shooting who did not want to go on camera told Central Coast News the driver of a black GMC SUV and the driver of a white pickup truck got into a heated argument in Spanish at one of the Conserv Fuel gas pumps.
The witness says the driver of the white pickup went back to his truck, pulled out a gun and shot the driver of the black SUV in the head.
The witness says the driver of the pickup got back in his truck, drove out of the gas station toward the southbound Highway 101 on ramp at Betteravia Road.
Investigators believe the entire incident may have been caught on tape by the gas station surveillance cameras.
The unidentified victim was flown to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. His condition remains unknown, but police say his wounds are not expected to be life threatening.
Police say now say a third person was inside the suspect’s white American-made pickup truck along with the suspect himself and a Hispanic adult woman.
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to contact the Santa Maria Police Department.
Authorities are on scene of a shooting reported just before 4:30 p.m. in the city of Santa Maria.
At least one person has been shot, according to Santa Maria police. The victim was taken to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital via Calstar helicopter. Police are not commenting on the condition or injuries of that person.
When asked about the status of the victim, Sgt. Paul Flores with the Santa Maria Police Department simply said, “This is an ongoing investigation.”
Law enforcement and medical personnel were dispatched to the 900 block of East Betteravia Road. That’s where police say shots rang out at a nearby Conserv Fuel gas station.
Both, the victim and suspect are described as Hispanic male adults. Police say the suspect was seen with an adult Hispanic woman.
The suspect vehicle is described as a white American-made pickup truck, with a black ladder rack, tool box, and may be traveling on southbound U.S. Highway 101, according to Sgt. Flores.
Police do not know if the victim and suspect are related to each other.
Police are reviewing surveillance video that they believe may have captured the shooting. Authorities confirm the black vehicle at the crime scene was driven by the victim, who was the only person in that car at the time of the shooting.
The incident has many residents on edge, including long time Santa Maria resident Donald Trujillo.”We saw this commotion and wondered what was going on. Found out it was another shooting. We just have to control our emotions here Santa Maria. It’s getting really bad.” he said.
“I have my grandchildren with me sometimes and if something goes wrong and someone gets into a shooting, or something like that, then they might get hurt and that’s why I’m concerned,” added Trujillo.
No other details were immediately known.
Check back for continued updates on this developing story.