STOCKTON, Calif. (KGO) — Stockton authorities said on Saturday an arrest has been made linked to the six murders in California.
Stockton Police Chief Stanley McFadden, City Manager Harry Black and Mayor Kevin Lincoln made the announcement in a joint press conference regarding the homicide series investigation.
Police say Wesley Brownlee, 43, was arrested as he was driving at 2 a.m. on Saturday.
He’s the prime suspect in six fatal shootings, including of one man in Oakland. A seventh shooting victim survived.
McFadden believes Brownlee was preparing to kill again.
“He was on a mission to kill. He was out hunting,” said McFadden. “As officers made contact with him, he was wearing dark clothing and wearing a mask around his neck. He was also armed with a firearm when he was taken into custody. We are sure we stopped another killing.”
Stockton police say ballistics tests linked the suspect to all seven shootings. Five of the shootings took place after July 8.
Chief Mcfadden says tips from the community helped determine where Brownlee lived. Brownlee is a Stockton resident, who lives close to one of the crime scenes.
“We maintained eyes on that residence, until he became mobile. Once he became mobile, that’s when we started to continue to follow him until we eventually took him off, where we identified he is posing a threat,” McFadden said.
“Even though there (aren’t) any words we can say to bring back the lost loved ones, the least that we could do is do our part to help bring justice. And here we are today,” says Stockton Mayor Kevin Lincoln.
Officials are trying to determine if the gun they found when Brownleee was arrested is the same gun used in the other shootings. They say Brownlee has a criminal past, but didn’t elaborate. And they still don’t have a motive in this case.
It’s now up to the San Joaquin D.A.’s office to file the appropriate charges.
“My deputy district attorneys, who have been here all night, are reviewing the evidence as we speak. And they are working actively in partnership with the investigation, to determine the charges that will proceed him,” says San Joaquin County District Attorney Tori Verber-Salazar.
Brownleee will be arraigned on Tuesday. The D.A.’s office says after the arraignment, they will announce the charges.
This story is developing. Check back for updates.
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