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Victim recounts run-in with suspect accused in West Valley shootings

(TikTok screenshot/@neilbetrue)

PHOENIX — A man who encountered the suspect accused in a string of shootings in the West Valley considers himself lucky after a close call the night before the crime spree.

Shane, a Door Dash driver, told KTAR News 92.3 FM he was talking on the phone with his wife in his car at a Circle K near 95th and Olive avenues in Peoria at about 6:15 p.m. on Wednesday when he noticed a man in a large, oversized black sweatshirt staring at him when he exited the store.

The man, who Shane identified as 19-year-old Ashin Tricarico, approached Shane and asked him, “you think you’re a bad boy, don’t you?”

Tricarico then got into his car, slid over a fully automatic rifle from his passenger’s seat, loaded it and pointed it at Shane.

Shane called 911. Tricarico left the parking lot and Shane followed in the same direction on Olive Avenue because he was completing a work request.

Their interaction didn’t end there, according to Shane.

“He stopped right in the middle of traffic, I see the gun barrel stick out the side of his window and I’m telling the 911 lady on the phone, ‘He is going to shoot me, he is going to shoot me,'” Shane said. “About two seconds later, he does a big U-turn right in the middle of Olive and comes back toward me.

“I ducked down and he did shoot at me.”

Tricarico shot once at Shane, an interaction heard by the Peoria police 911 dispatcher who was on the line with the victim.

Court documents released Friday corroborated Shane’s account of the incident.

“You don’t just turn around in the middle of traffic, point a gun and shoot at somebody,” Shane said.

Shane was unharmed in the shooting, but said it spooked him.

“When they released his mugshot today, it just brought back all of the memories of that night,” Shane said. “He could have shot me right in the parking lot of the Circle K.”

Tricarico was arrested Thursday in connection with eight shootings in Peoria, Surprise and Glendale over a period of about 90 minutes.

Surprise police took him into custody without incident around 12:45 p.m. at 147th and Grand avenues after a member of the Surprise Fire-Medical Department spotted a vehicle connected to the shootings, a white Volkswagen Tiguan, and reported it.

Tricarico was booked on charges of first-degree murder, aggravated assault (10 counts), drive by shooting (8 counts) and endangerment, police said.

Four people were hit by bullets during the shooting spree, including a victim found dead in a vehicle on the Loop 101 Agua Fria Freeway near Thunderbird Road.

The nine other injuries were the result of car crashes and shrapnel such as broken glass.

Police said all of the surviving victims are expected to make a full recovery.

The person killed was a 56-year-old man whose name has not yet been released, police said.

“I hate that somebody had to die for him to get caught, but I’m glad he’s caught and off the street,” Shane said.

Tricarico was being held on $1 million bond and his next court appearance is set for Thursday.

The Peoria Police Department is leading the investigation. Anybody with additional information was asked to call the department at 623-773-8311, or Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS (948-6377) or 480-TESTIGO (837-8446) for Spanish.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Debra Dale contributed to this report.

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