Crime

Burglars flee and gunshots ring out in Fresno, but deputies ask: Who did the shooting?

Bullet casings were found in the driveway of this home on Barstow Avenue east of Marks Avenue on Friday. Fresno County sheriff’s deputies are trying to piece together what happened during an apparent burglary.
Bullet casings were found in the driveway of this home on Barstow Avenue east of Marks Avenue on Friday. Fresno County sheriff’s deputies are trying to piece together what happened during an apparent burglary. lgriswold@fresnobee.com

An attempted burglary of a north Fresno home ended with shots being fired, but who fired the gun and whether bullets hit anyone remains a mystery, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office said.

About noon Friday, Fresno police got a call about shots fired on Barstow Avenue just east of Marks Avenue.

Officers arrived and saw shell casings in the driveway and asked a man at the home what happened. He said a burglary had just occurred.

Police ran the address and because the home is in a county island, the sheriff’s department took over.

The man, said to be 18 to 21 years old, told deputies he was driving home when he got a call from his mother, who said her Ring doorbell camera showed a suspicious man by the front porch.

The man pulled into the driveway, got out of his vehicle and checked the front porch but saw no one. He looked in the backyard to see a tall man wearing a sweatshirt, who hopped over the back fence and ran away.

The homeowner’s son returned to the front of the home and heard a rustling inside the garage. Then he saw a man run out of the garage and east on Barstow.

The man got into his Toyota 4Runner and chased after the runner but lost sight of him. He then drove around the block onto Marks looking for the man who had jumped the fence.

He came back to the home where neighbors were gathering because they heard gunshots. One neighbor said he heard six gunshots.

The homeowner’s son told them the home had been broken into and said to call police.

About 40 minutes later, a gunshot victim arrived at Community Regional Medical Center. Detectives are trying to figure out if the gunshot victim, about 19 years old, might have been at the home, said sheriff’s office spokesman Tony Botti.

No blood had been found at the home as of mid-afternoon Friday.

“We need to make a little more sense of the story this young man is giving us,” Botti said. “Everyone seems to be stumped as to why there’s a bunch of bullet casings on the driveway. We don’t know if the homeowner shot at the suspects or if the suspects fired at the homeowner. It’s really up in the air right now.”

About five minutes elapsed from when the man arrived and when police got the call of gunshots and a burglary attempt, Botti said.

Detectives might get a photo the gunshot victim and show it to the man to see if it’s one of the men he saw, Botti said. They also might get a search warrant to enter the home, he said.

The case remains under investigation.

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