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2 S. Oregon arrests after 2 carjacking tries, chase, shooting


Two men, from El Salvador and New Mexico, accused in a violent multi-state crime spree were arrested Saturday evening after two attempted carjackings in southern Oregon, one accused of firing shots at police in a violent pursuit and later shooting and critically wounding an intended carjacking victim, Oregon State Police reported Sunday.

The suspect allegedly shot and critically wounded a man and assaulted a woman but was unable to steal their car.

Police responded around 5:30 p.m. Saturday to the Red Robin Restaurant in Roseburg on a report of an attempted carjacking, OSP Captain Tim Fox said. The suspect or suspects were unable to steal the vehicle and fled in their original vehicle.

Roseburg police were able to arrest one suspect who was left behind, identified as Jose Lopez-Jovel, 31, of El Salvador. He was booked into the Douglas County Jail on Utah fugitive warrants, Fox said.

Police found the suspect vehicle as the driver fled south on Interstate 5. During the pursuit, a suspect identified as Matthew Anthony Fanelli, 30, of New Mexico fired a gun several times and struck a semitruck, a car (striking the occupied child seat inside) and an OSP patrol car, disabling it, Fox said.

The chase continued south into Josephine County, where police lost sight of the vehicle. Fox said Fanelli tried to carjack another vehicle near a home on Pickett Creek Road as a couple arrived home. The suspect shot the man and assaulted the woman but was unable to steal their car.

Police again located the suspect’s car and the driver again refused to stop until the vehicle became disabled and he was taken into custody. He was lodged in the Josephine County Jail.

Fox said OSP and other agencies learned the two men “were associated with a multi-state crime spree of violent criminal activity,” Fox said in a news release.

Among the other crimes, Fanelli is accused in an alleged shooting and an assault at a Colorado Springs strip club early Friday morning, KTVZ sister station KRDO reported. No one was hurt by gunfire, but he allegedly assaulted a female employee, who then ran out of the building.

KSL reported the pair were suspects in a Park City, Utah bank robbery and also might be tied to a deadly shooting in Denver and a robbery in Wyoming.

“As a matter of precaution, citizens along the route of the vehicle chase and associated crime scenes should be vigilant of their surrounding area, hitchhikers, and securing of their property,” the captain said. ” Additionally, motorists traveling Interstate 5 during the vehicle pursuit are requested to check their vehicles for evidence of firearm damage.”

More information will be released as available, Fox said, adding that no other injuries were reported.

Numerous agencies are involved, including the Roseburg Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Grants Pass Department of Public Safety and Josephine County Sheriff’s Office. The FBI is also assisting.

Anyone with more information is asked to call OSP dispatch at 1-800-442-2068 and leave a request for contact from detectives working the case.

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