Crime

Robbery suspect drops gun, victim grabs it and shoots him in leg and buttocks, deputies say

Special to The Bee

An alleged bandit was shot in the leg and buttocks Thursday afternoon when he dropped his pistol southwest of Fresno and his victim grabbed the weapon and opened fire, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office reported.

The incident took place about 12:30 p.m. near Floral and Jameson avenues as a contractor arrived at a field to pay the workers, according to sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti. A short time after the contractor began distributing the cash, three hooded men, two of them armed, pulled up in a black Dodge Durango. One of the bandits grabbed the money from the contractor.

Then, things turned bad for the suspects, according to Botti. One of the armed man, identified as Dion Loftis, 22, of Hanford, slipped and dropped his gun. A nearby worker grabbed the weapon, and shot the suspect in the leg once and twice in his backside. Other workers jumped on the bleeding suspect while the other two robbers jumped back in the SUV and began to speed away. The worker who shot the suspect then unloaded the rest of the ammo at the fleeing suspects.

Arriving deputies applied first aid to the injured suspect and he was taken to a hospital.

The getaway SUV may have bullet holes in its body and it’s possible one of the other suspects was also hit. Botti said there is a “strong possibility” the Durango is in the Hanford area.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the sheriff’s office at 559-600-3111, detective Lindsay Milchovich at 559-600-8174 or Lindsay.Milchovich2@fresnosheriff.org, or Crime Stoppers at 559-498-7867 or valleycrimestoppers.org, where tips can be made anonymously and may be eligible for a cash reward.

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