BELLINGHAM, Wash. — First responders were dispatched at 9:10pm, Friday, March 11th, to Roosevelt Park, in the 2200 block of Verona Street, due to reports of “a big fight” possibly with gunshots.
According to unconfirmed police dispatch radio transmissions at the time, witnesses reported multiple vehicles speeding away from the park in all directions.
Bellingham Police Department (BPD) officers radioed that the park was empty when they arrived, and soon after reported having located shell casings.
A detailed suspect vehicle description of a white Ford Mustang seen firing toward the park after an initial volley of gunshots was shared with law enforcement by radio.
According to BPD Lieutenant Claudia Murphy in an email to Whatcom News, a Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) deputy located a white Ford Mustang driving abnormally slow on Woburn Street, away from the incident and pulled it over in the area of McLeod Road and Chandler Parkway. 4 males in the Ford were detained.
Eugenio Herrera-Duenas Jr, age 19, was sitting in the backseat on the driver’s side, and officers saw there was a handgun underneath him.
Officers also saw spent shell casings inside the Mustang, as well as one which fell to the ground outside of the car.
Herrera-Duenas was arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm and during a search incident to his arrest, the officer found four, unspent, 9mm rounds in his front pants pocket. These rounds matched the spent casings found in the Mustang. Herrera-Duenas admitted to officers he was in the park at the time of the shooting.
The vehicle was later reported to have been impounded as evidence.
The driver of the Mustang, a juvenile, was detained, but did not wish to elaborate on his involvement in this case according to Murphy. He was arrested for drive-by shooting and booked into the Whatcom County Juvenile Detention Facility.
Another juvenile seated in the back passenger side, had a set of metal knuckles on the floor near his feet. He was arrested for being in possession of a dangerous weapon and booked into Whatcom County Juvenile Detention Facility.
Based on initial information, there were no reported injuries.
Herrera-Duenas was booked into Whatcom County Jail and charged with suspicion of drive-by shooting and unlawful possession of a firearm. Officers discovered he is a convicted felon of crimes which prohibits him from possessing a firearm, along with the fact he is only 19 years of age.
Herrera-Duenas remained in custody without bail as of March 12th while awaiting a preliminary hearing in Whatcom County Superior Court.
This story was updated at 5:30pm, March 12th, with information received from the Bellingham Police Department.