Two suspects in the fatal shooting of 6-year-old Aiden Leos on the freeway to be charged on Tuesday – NBC Los Angeles
The authorities informed on Monday afternoon of the arrests of a couple from Costa Mesa in the fatal shooting of 6-year-old Aiden Leos on the motorway on the Costa Mesa motorway (55).
The suspects – Marcus Anthony Eriz, 24) and Wynne Lee, 23 – were arrested by the California Highway Patrol at their Costa Mesa home on Sunday.
At a press conference that afternoon, the CHP didn’t say much about the case, citing the ongoing investigation, but said they had seized a gun and the affected vehicle.
Authorities have not yet commented on whether anyone will qualify for the $ 500,000 in reward money offered for information related to Aiden’s murder. According to the CHP, “hundreds” of tips were received from the population.
Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said a decision on the charges against the two suspects has not yet been made, but the review of the case will complete either later Monday or early Tuesday.
Both were held on $ 1 million bail and were due to appear in court on Tuesday pending criminal charges, according to Orange County Prison records. The arrests came the day after Aiden’s funeral in Yorba Linda.
“This pointless crime tore the heart of the community apart and brought them together in outrage and sheer determination to find Aiden’s murderer,” said Donald Wagner, Orange County supervisor. “The CHP and the prosecution have worked tirelessly to bring justice to Aiden. I congratulate them on these arrests and thank them for their service to the people of Orange County.”
The arrests followed a lengthy manhunt carried out by investigators from the CHP of the Santa Ana area and the investigative unit of the border division of the CHP with the help of other authorities.
“On behalf of the Chief of the Border Division, Omar Watson, and the Santa Ana area, we are deeply grateful for the professionalism and tireless commitment of our investigators who worked on this case from day one to find those responsible for Aiden’s death.” said CHP Commissioner Amanda Ray.
“While these arrests won’t alleviate the pain of losing a mother, I hope the Leos family have some peace of mind and can be sure that the CHP will work with the Orange County District Attorney to bring Aiden justice.”
Watson also thanked the Southern California community for their “indescribable wave of concern and hundreds of tips” in helping investigators find the suspects.
“The department has been in regular contact with the victim’s family, and I assure you that, like us, they work to ensure that justice is done,” said Watson.
On May 21, just before or after 8 a.m., Aiden’s mother, Joanna Cloonan, was driving a silver Chevrolet Sonic north on 55 between Garden Grove (22) Freeway and Chapman Avenue in Orange when there was a traffic accident involving the occupants of the a white Volkswagen station wagon – probably Eriz and Lee.
Pistol shots were fired and at least one shot was fatal to the boy in the right passenger seat. Officials previously said they believed a woman was driving a male passenger.
Passers-by Reyes Valdivia and his wife stopped to help when they saw Cloonan on the highway lane pulling their son off the passenger side of the car. He said she told them she was interrupted by a vehicle with a man and a woman inside while trying to change lanes to the exit. She made a gesture and pulled into the exit lane. Authorities believe the Volkswagen driver was maneuvering behind Cloonan’s car and one of the occupants fired a shot into the truck and hit Aiden.
Cloonan called 911 and the boy was taken to Orange County Children’s Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Speaking at the funeral on Saturday, Cloonan said, “Violence is an unacceptable way to resolve our differences and that is why my son lost his life.”
The CHP published the photo of the suspicious vehicle – apparently a white Volkswagen Golf sports car from 2018 or 2019 with untinted windows but no visible license plate. It was last seen on the Riverside (91) Freeway towards Riverside, said CHP officer Florentino Olivera.