SALT LAKE CITY — A man arrested in connection with three drive-by shootings in a Salt Lake neighborhood Wednesday night now faces federal charges.
Jordan Gonzales, 26, was charged Thursday with being a felon in possession of a firearm, according to a complaint filed in federal court. A second person arrested in connection with the shootings is a juvenile, according to the complaint.
About 9:15 p.m., shots were fired at a house near 1600 West and 500 South, according to police. A second shooting was reported just before 10 p.m. near 900 West and 1600 South. Then just before 11 p.m., a third shooting happened at the house next to the first shooting.
No injuries were reported in any of the incidents.
Salt Lake police said they were still in the area investigating the first shooting when officers actually witnessed the third shooting.
“While in the area, I heard what I recognized as multiple shots — four to five — being fired in the area of the same victim house which was occupied by residents at the time of the incident,” one of the arresting officers wrote in a police affidavit.
The officer spotted a vehicle parked directly in front of the house and then saw it speed away, the affidavit states.
Officers chased the suspect vehicle to about 200 N. State where the car crashed.
Gonzales ran from the car to the Memory Grove area, said Salt Lake Police Lt. Dave Cracroft. He was arrested after he was found hiding in the area. A juvenile, who did not leave the vehicle, was also taken into custody.
Gonzales, who police say is a documented gang member, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail. Police believe Gonzales was responsible for all three shootings, the affidavit says, and a rival gang member lives in at least one of the targeted homes.
The federal charging documents say Gonzales was the driver of the car seen in the area when the shootings occurred, while the juvenile was the passenger. He’s alleged to have a 9mm handgun that one of the detectives chasing him on foot saw him throw as he ran.
He could face state charges in connection with the drive-by shootings as well.
In November 2019, Gonzales was charged with shooting at another rival gang member, according to the affidavit. But at the preliminary hearing, the charges of shooting at another person were dismissed due to a lack of witnesses, court records indicate. The charges of possession of a gun by a restricted person and drug possession were still pending as of Thursday.
Contributing: Amy Donaldson