Suspect in two-state Thanksgiving rampage that left one dead, five injured, is charged with murder

National News

Nevada/Arizona (NBC) (12/03/20)— A suspect in a two-state Thanksgiving rampage that left one person dead and five people injured appeared in a Nevada court Tuesday on charges of murder and other crimes, court records show.

The suspect, Christopher McDonnell, age 28, is one of three people that police in Nevada said were allegedly “randomly shooting at citizens with no apparent motive” in the city of Henderson, just south of Las Vegas, early Thanksgiving morning.

Another suspect, Kayleigh Lewis, age 25, is being held roughly 160 miles away, at the La Paz County jail in Arizona. Charges filed Tuesday against her include two counts each of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault and endangerment, according to court records in the town of Parker.

A third suspect who was taken into custody in Arizona, Shawn McDonnell, age 30, faces the same charges as Lewis, according to the records.

A prosecutor in Clark County, Nevada, Michael Schwartzer, said Tuesday that the McDonnells are brothers and that the elder sibling allegedly referenced an “upcoming war” and told the younger brother to “shoot the black guy,” according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Kayleigh Lewis is Shawn McDonnell’s wife, the newspaper reported.

“It’s just a horrific case to me,” Schwartzer said, according to the newspaper. “It’s Thanksgiving. … The victims in this case did absolutely nothing wrong and were just living their lives.”

Citing Schwartzer, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday, the newspaper reported that prosecutors are considering a hate crime-enhancement and terrorism-related charges.

Police in Henderson said dispatchers received multiple calls from people saying they were being shot at around 1 a.m. on Thanksgiving. When they arrived at the scene of a shooting north of central Henderson, they found a 22-year-old man dead from a gunshot wound.

One woman and three men had also been shot, police said.

Nearly eight hours later, authorities in Arizona began receiving multiple reports of people in a car on State Route 95 near Parker shooting at other vehicles.

When troopers from the Arizona Department of Public Safety spotted the car, its driver allegedly careened off the road and the car rolled over, the department said in a statement. Shawn McDonnell then allegedly got out of the car and pointed a gun at the officers, who fired at him.

Shawn McDonnell was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. It wasn’t clear if he had been released. A La Paz County sheriff’s official did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Christopher McDonnell and Kayleigh Lewis were also taken to a hospital for injuries they sustained during the rollover. Both were later released.

Citing an arrest report, the Review-Journal reported that authorities found three handguns, a baseball bat and two machete-style knives inside their car.

A public defender assigned to represent Lewis did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday. The public defender’s office in Clark County, Nevada, said it wasn’t clear if a lawyer had been assigned to represent Christopher McDonnell.

In addition to murder, Christopher McDonnell faces multiple charges of attempted murder, battery and discharging a weapon within a structure or vehicle, court records show. He did not enter a plea during his court hearing Tuesday.

A bail hearing was scheduled for Dec. 15, according to the Review-Journal.

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