UPDATE: Hemet K-9 injured during apprehension of murder suspect accused of shooting family member
UPDATED: Thursday, Jan. 27, 7:22 a.m.
See Original Story below.
HEMET, Calif., — A man suspected of gunning down a family member during a heated argument inside a Hemet home early Tuesday morning is in custody following a violent struggle yesterday afternoon that left Hemet PD’s newest police service dog, K-9 “Bosco” injured.
Both the K-9 and suspect, 24-year-old Koron LeKeith Lowe, required medical treatment after the apprehension and Lowe remains hospitalized while the K-9 is continuing to receive veterinary care. Neither’s injuries were considered life-threatening, and both are expected to fully recover, according to officials.
LEADING THE RCNS HEADLINES:
Officials began searching for Lowe after responding to multiple reports of shots fired inside the gated Willowalk community around 6:15 a.m. Tuesday morning.
While officers were headed to the area, dispatchers received another 911 call from a terrified woman who said shots had been fired inside her home and that she was hiding inside the residence with two young children, ages five and six.
After entering the home where the shooting happened, officers managed to safely rescue the woman and children, but discovered the deceased and bullet-riddled body of a woman, since identified by Coroner officials as Asasha Lache Hall, 30, of Hemet.
The suspected gunman, since identified as Lowe, had already fled the scene prior to officers’ arrival, kicking off an extensive, county-wide search for the man initially referred to by Hemet Police Lieutenant Nate Miller as a “person of interest” in the fatal shooting.
Seen with his handler, Hemet Police Officer Detwiler, K-9 Bosco was injured while assisting with the apprehension of a man suspected in the fatal shooting of a family member inside a Hemet home early Tuesday morning. Hemet PD photo
“Within minutes of Hemet Police officers arriving on-scene of yesterday’s shooting investigation, detectives began following leads and tracking Lowe, who had fled the Greengable Lane scene prior to police arrival,” Miller explained after Lowe’s capture. “Working throughout the night, investigators found themselves seemingly only minutes behind Lowe; working their way from Hemet to the Beaumont and Banning Pass Area by morning.”
“As the day continued, Investigators caught up to Lowe shortly after 1 p.m. in a parking lot in the desert community of Cabazon. Investigators attempted to negotiate with Lowe but he refused to surrender and get out of the parked car he was hiding in,” Miller continued.
During Lowe’s subsequent apprehension, Hemet Police K-9 Bosco was used to assist in getting Lowe to exit the car. However, Bosco sustained significant injuries during the arrest “when Lowe violently fought the dog and struck it with a sharp piece of wood,” the Lieutenant explained; adding that officers and deputies were eventually able to get Lowe into custody.
Bosco, who has only been working with Hemet PD for the last four months, was rushed to an area emergency veterinary clinic and treated for his wounds. He is expected to be back on the job after a weekend of rest and recovery, according to Miller.
Lowe was also transported to an area hospital and as of this morning was continuing to receive medical treatment for injuries he sustained during his apprehension.
Miller went on to say, “Following medical treatment, Lowe is expected to be booked into Riverside County Jail with a slew of charges to include murder and attempted murder for the events on Greengable Lane in Hemet.
“He will also face additional charges for resisting arrest with violence and for fighting a police dog,” he added.
Original Story: Search for local man continuing after “seemingly senseless” murder inside Hemet home
UPDATED: Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2:51 p.m., With release of victim’s name.
HEMET, Calif., — Authorities today are continuing to search for a Hemet man who officials and witnesses say fatally shot a family member inside a private Hemet residence yesterday morning, Tuesday, Jan. 25. A total of nine people, including seven adults and two children, were present when the deadly shooting occurred at the home, which is located in the 3000 block of Greengable Lane, within the gated Willowalk community, southeast of Sanderson and Stetson Avenues.
Officials, who called the murder “seemingly senseless”, confirmed to RCNS this morning that the victim was fatally shot during an argument between family members that spun wildly out of control, and asked that anyone with information as to what may have led to the deadly encounter, or who knows the alleged suspect’s whereabouts, to contact them.
City of Hemet police officers were dispatched to the scene around 6:15 a.m. after the City’s emergency dispatch center began receiving multiple calls reporting gunshots heard in the area, Hemet Police Lieutenant Nate Miller later said of the shooting and ongoing investigation and search for the man believed responsible for the woman’s murder.
While officers were headed to the area, dispatchers received another 911 call from a terrified woman who said that shots had been fired inside her home and that she was hiding inside the residence with two young children, ages five and six.
Reports of shots fired within a Hemet home brought resources and SWAT members from around southwest Riverside County early yesterday morning. Eddie George/Hemet News photo
While requesting additional resources to the scene, officers surrounded the home and were ultimately able to safely evacuate the woman who had been hiding inside the residence with the two children.
However, while evacuating the woman and children from the home, officers located a woman with multiple gunshot wounds who was found deceased on the bottom floor of the two-story residence.
Due to the suspected gunman not being immediately located, and “because it was unknown if the shooting suspect was still inside” the home according to Miller, neighboring residences were evacuated and officers from the joint Southwest Cities Special Weapons and Tactics Unit, which includes personnel from Hemet, Menifee, and Murrieta police departments, responded to the location with a tactical armored rescue vehicle.
Nobody else was found during a subsequent and thorough search of the residence, and the home was secured according to Miller; who said, “Once the scene was safe, neighbors were allowed back to their homes while detectives and crime scene investigators began processing the home for evidence.”
While processing the scene, officers recovered a handgun believed to have been used in the fatal confrontation.
Throughout the remainder of the day, officials were seen interviewing those who had been inside the home when the fatal shooting occurred, as well as neighbors and others who may have witnessed or heard what led to the deadly shooting.
Officials from multiple agencies are seen as they investigated yesterday morning’s fatal shooting, reportedly between family members, that left a 30-year-old woman dead at the scene. Eddie George/Hemet News photo
During their subsequent investigation, officers learned that five adults and two children lived together in the home. Two additional adults and family members were also visiting the home when one of the residents, 24-year-old Koron LeKeith Lowe, began causing a disturbance and arguing with the other adults.
As the argument escalated, gunfire erupted inside the home, and a 30-year-old female was struck and fatally wounded. She has since been identified by the Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner’s Office as Asasha Lache Hall, of Hemet.
Lowe reportedly fled the area over a back wall of the residence after the deadly shooting and prior to police arriving, according to Miller; who referred to him as a “Person of Interest” in the case.
Speaking to Hemet News at the scene on the condition of anonymity, one of the involved family members said Lowe, who is his cousin, had shot and killed his brother’s wife. However, he provided no further information as to what may have led to the fatal incident.
Contacted for further information and confirmation that those involved in the shooting were family members, Miller this morning told RCNS, “Yes, our person of interest is related to members of the home.” However, citing the early and ongoing nature of the investigation, the Lieutenant added, “That said, I can’t say at this time if his relationship to the shooting victim is by blood or marriage or some other way.”
Miller went on to say, “At this time, the investigation into this seemingly senseless death is active and just beginning,” adding, “Thankfully, the children were not physically hurt and there were no other injuries reported.”
Officials have since asked for the public’s help locating Lowe, but they cautioned citizens to not approach him if seen, and to immediately call 911 to report any suspected sightings.
Anyone who may have witnessed any part of this incident, or who knows what may have led to the disturbance and subsequent gunfire is encouraged to contact Hemet Police Sergeant Gabe Gomez at (951) 765-2396 or by email.
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Eddie George/Hemet News photos above, video below.
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Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).
Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.