Fresno County homeowner shoots out truck window as thief speeds away

The Fresno BeeJune 11, 2014 

Fresno County sheriff's deputies are searching for a pickup truck with the rear window shot out after a homeowner confronted a vehicle thief southwest of Fresno Wednesday morning. The thief, a wanted parolee, might be wounded.

The confrontation happened about 7 a.m. at Valentine and Central avenues, sheriff's spokesman Chris Curtice said. Authorities later identified the suspect as Randy Lee Grill, 28, of Fresno. Grill should be armed and dangerous, Curtice said. There is a felony warrant on Grill for vehicle theft.

Curtice said the homeowner interrupted the theft of a white Chevrolet Silverado Z-71. The suspect pointed a handgun at the homeowner, who then got his own weapon and fired at least one round as the crook fled in the truck, shattering the window.

Curtice said it's believed that Grill earlier burglarized a business in the 3000 block of West Kearney Boulevard, then collided on Valentine Avenue with the driver of another pickup truck, who followed the suspect.

Grill then drove south to Beran Way, where he jumped out of a stolen Dodge pickup truck and may have fired several gunshots before running south on Valentine Avenue and stealing the Silverado, Curtice said.

The sheriff's office is also investigating a hit-and-run crash in central Fresno on Wednesday afternoon that they believe could have been caused by Grill. The hit-and-run was reported around 12:35 p.m. on the McKinley Avenue on-ramp to northbound Highway 41, said California Highway Patrol spokesman Axel Reyes. No more details were available Wednesday afternoon.

Authorities describe Grill as 5 feet, 11 inches tall and 160 pounds. He is clean-shaven with a close-cropped haircut. He was last seen wearing beige shorts and a short-sleeve shirt. He had a black backpack.

Anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers at (559) 498-STOP.

Staff writer Carmen George contributed to this report. The reporter can be reached at jguy@fresnobee.com or at (559) 441-6339 or on Twitter @jimguy27

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