Five in custody in alleged gang-related shooting on the Midway in Chico

KATY SWEENY (ChicoER) | November 01, 2012

CHICO — A juvenile gang member barely missed the Chico couple he was allegedly aiming for last week, hitting their headrests but not them while he shot at their vehicle from a car.

“We’re talking centimeters away from having likely a double homicide,” Sgt. Jason Hail said Wednesday.

The Butte County Sheriff’s Office gang unit arrested two men and three male juveniles for alleged attempted murder in the alleged gang-related shooting with a high-powered rifle Oct. 25 on the Midway, Hail said.

Jose Serrato Avila, 19, and Nicholas John Lewis, 18, were booked into the Butte County Jail in Oroville on two counts of attempted murder, shooting at an occupied vehicle, criminal conspiracy and a street gang enhancement, Hail said.

The juveniles, ages 14, 16 and 17, were detained and are being held without bail on the same charges at Juvenile Hall.

The suspects spotted a vehicle of a rival gang member Oct. 25 in Chico and followed it, Hail said. The teens did not verify that a rival was in the car. The occupants are associated with a gang.

One of the juveniles allegedly leaned out of a yellow Honda Civic hatchback and shot several rounds at the couple driving south on the Midway at Hegan Lane, Hail said.

After the first shot, the 38-year-old man and his 36-year-old wife ducked, Hail said. Neither was injured.

About 6:35 p.m., the husband called 9-1-1 to report the shooting from a vehicle behind them, Hail said. The suspects then fled northbound on Midway.

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