SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man who wounded a motorist and hit two other vehicles, including an ambulance, in a shooting spree targeting drivers between National City and Del Mar was convicted Monday of premeditated attempted murder and shooting at an occupied vehicle.
Enrique Ayon, 26, faces life in prison when he is sentenced Oct. 25.
After 2 1/2 days of deliberations, jurors convicted Ayon of two counts of attempted murder, three counts of shooting at an occupied vehicle, as well as misdemeanor hit-and-run and vandalism.
The jury deadlocked 11-1 for guilt on a third attempted murder charge and a single count of discharging a firearm in grossly negligent manner, prompting Judge Joan Weber to declare a mistrial on those counts.
A hearing is scheduled Tuesday on whether prosecutors plan to retry the unresolved charges.
Deputy District Attorney Chris Moon said the case was an important one for the community and for the victims who were affected by Ayon's actions.
"Certainly whenever somebody attempts to murder innocent drivers on the freeway, we do take that very seriously and commit a great deal of resources to that prosecution," Moon said after the verdict. "I think justice was achieved in this case."
On Oct. 3, 2011, Ayon crashed his Chevrolet Malibu through a security gate near the U.S.-Mexico border a day before starting to shoot at motorists on northbound 805 in National City.
Marcus Eagles testified that he was driving north on I-805 near Plaza Boulevard about 10:15 a.m. when the defendant fired at him.
Eagles said Ayon, who was driving next to him, pointed a gun at him and fired. Eagles said he found a bullet hole in the rear door on the driver's side door after pulling onto the shoulder of the freeway.
Shortly afterward, Ayon wounded 26-year-old Demitrous Miller in the thigh in an attack near Mesa College Drive in Serra Mesa.
Ayon also fired a shot near Interstate 805 and state Route 163. A few minutes later, he fired two shots into an ambulance on Interstate 5 near Del Mar.
Ayon was arrested the next day in Los Angeles County. He pleaded guilty in April to felony battery charges for punching jail deputies on three occasions last year.
The National Weather Service is predicting rain around San Diego County this week, potentially heavy rain on Thursday. People in unincorporated areas can get free sandbags at numerous locations to help them protect their homes, properties and communities.
Influenza deaths and cases went up last week and the number of emergency department visits due to influenza-like illness remained the same, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced Wednesday.
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After a nearly three-hour public hearing, the City Council voted 8-1 Tuesday to approve a facility that would allow homeless people to store their valuables.