Riverside: Man Arrested after Fatally Shooting Tow Truck Driver after Altercation

Javier Martinez, 32-years-old of Landers, has been arrested for the murder of a tow truck driver in Riverside. On Monday, October 7, 2019, at approximately 1:10 p.m., Riverside Police Officers responded to the 3700 block of Bandini Avenue for reports of a physical altercation with shots being fired. 

When officers arrived, they located a male adult victim near a tow truck suffering from gunshot wounds.

Paramedics with the Riverside Fire Department also responded and pronounced the victim deceased at the scene. The suspect fled on foot but was apprehended by officers several blocks away about 15 minutes later.

Preliminary information showed the suspect called for a private tow service at this location for his vehicle. After the victim tow driver arrived and put the suspect’s vehicle on the flatbed tow truck, the suspect engaged the victim in an altercation.

During the altercation, the suspect produced a firearm and shot the victim. Due to the suspect fleeing on foot and in the proximity of two schools, lockdown protocols at those schools were put in place until the suspect was safely taken into custody a short time later.

Detectives with the Robbery – Homicide Unit, along with Specialists from the Forensics Unit, responded and assumed the investigation. They are being assisted by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office and Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner’s Office. The identity of the victim is pending the Coroner’s investigation and notification of family members. Members of the Riverside Police Department’s K-9 Team with their bloodhound and ordnance detection dogs also assisted with evidence searches.

Martinez was later booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center for murder. He is being held without bail.

This investigation is still ongoing and there are no further details to release at this time. Anyone with information is urged to contact Detective Adrian Tillett at (951) 353-7105 or atillett@riversideca.gov, or Detective Karla Beler at (951) 353-7138 or kbeler@riversideca.gov.

Those wishing to remain anonymous can email rpdtips@riversideca.gov or utilize the Riverside Police Department’s mobile app “Submit a Tip” feature while referencing report number 190029061.

Press Release Provided by the Riverside Police Department