May 23, 2019 • Nelson Phillips • Staff Writer
(UPDATE: The shooting victim has been identified as 50-year-old Dennis Gwyther of Salt Lake City. The identity of the passenger who was injured has not yet been released. UHP officials have confirmed that the passenger, a male, was shot in the arm.)
A freeway shooting Wednesday night on I-84 near Snowville has left one person dead, a passenger injured, and has sparked a manhunt in Idaho for the shooter.
The victims in the apparent road rage incident have not yet been identified by law enforcement officials, but the News Journal has confirmed that they were not Box Elder County residents.
According to Utah Highway Patrol (UHP) Lieutenant Lee Perry, at approximately 8:02 p.m. on Wednesday night a call was received by Box Elder dispatch from a passenger in a Range Rover saying that the driver had been shot, the passenger injured.
“A passing EMT was able to clarify that the driver of the Range Rover was beyond help and was deceased,” said Perry. “That witness/victim described the suspect vehicle as a silver Jetta with out of state plates. An 'Attempt to Locate' was put out for Idaho and Nevada.”
The passenger was transported by ambulance to Bear River Valley Hospital in Tremonton, where he or she was treated and released. Troopers from the UHP and deputies from the Box Elder County Sheriff’s Office secured the scene, set up traffic controls, and began a search for the suspect’s vehicle.
A silver Jetta matching the description of the suspect’s vehicle was shortly thereafter located by Idaho State Police near Burley. The driver tried to evade pursuit by Idaho troopers, and ended up crashing his vehicle into an irrigation canal. He then fled on foot.
At the request of Idaho officials, the Utah Department of Public Safety (DPS) helicopter was dispatched to Idaho to help locate the suspect, and as of this writing that search is ongoing.
Idaho officials have identified the suspect as 45-year-old Jonathan Llana, thought to be from California. He is described as 5 foot 10 inches tall, 150 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. If spotted, the public is warned not to approach Llana, as he is considered “armed and dangerous.” Information as to Llana’s whereabouts can be called into the Idaho State Police at (208) 846-7550.
Both cars involved in the shooting have been recovered by the Utah State Bureau of Investigation, and are undergoing forensic testing at the Utah Crime Lab.
This story will be updated as more information is released.
Box Elder News Journal
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