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A Google Street View shows the 1100 block of Villa Avenue where it intersects with Oak Street in northeastern El Centro, the apparent site of a shooting Friday, Nov. 6, where a 37-year-old victim who found by responding El Centro police officers. The victim later died after being flown to an undisclosed hospital. | GOOGLE MAPS IMAGE

Man, 37, Dies from Gunshot Wound in El Centro Drive-By on Friday, Nov. 6

(Updated 10:30 a.m. Nov. 7: Additional information included from El Centro Police Department radio logs.)

A 37-year-old man died after being shot in the head during a drive-by shooting in northeast El Centro on Friday, Nov. 6, according to a press release from the El Centro Police Department and police radio log reports.

The victim, whose identity was being withheld by police Friday afternoon, was alive at the scene and died after being transferred by an air ambulance helicopter to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, according to a combination of information from the press release that was sent out shortly after 3:30 p.m. and radio log info released Nov. 7.

Police officers responded to reports of a shooting at Oak Road and Villa Avenue in the northeast side of the city about 11:30 a.m., logs stated. The 37-year-old victim was found in his front yard in the 1100 block of Oak Street with a single gunshot wound to the head, according to logs.

Paramedics from El Centro Fire Department and AMR ambulance service provided medical treatment at the scene. It was not entirely clear from the logs, but it appears a REACH helicopter landed in Swarthout Field about three blocks south of the crime scene to transport the victim directly to Desert Regional.

It also wasn’t immediately clear if the victim made it to Desert Regional before he died, but according to log reports, coroner’s officials and police were called to Pioneers Memorial Hospital in Brawley a few hours later to await the arrival of the victim’s body.

Brawley’s Frye Chapel and Mortuary has been where decedents are taken to be examined by coroner investigators.

ECPD’s Investigations Bureau is still working the case, and witnesses have described a light-colored Chevy full-size pickup being involved in the shooting, according to the police report and additional log information. Two suspects were seen in the pickup and the passenger was pinpointed as the main suspect, the logs state.

No suspects have been apprehended as of Saturday morning, Nov. 7, according to police. Two suspects were detained initially, according to log reports, but they were cleared as suspects and released.

Around 4 p.m., officers in the area were removing crime scene tape that had cordoned off the area, and a vehicle parked in the 1100 block of Oak Road was observed with a broken driver-side window and what appeared to be at least one bullet hole in the driver’s door near the sideview mirror.  

An individual who was inspecting the damaged vehicle stated that he discovered a spent bullet. “I sure hope they catch who did this,” said a man who identified himself as the father of the victim.

The vehicle, a white Hyundai Sonata, was requested towed from the scene by police shortly after, according to logs.

No other information was available.

Anyone with information on the case is being asked to contact El Centro police Detective Adrian Chilpa at 760-335-4662 or 760-337-4502.

A Google map of the northeastern section of El Centro shows the location (red pin) where a 37-year-old man was apparently shot on Friday, Nov. 6. The victim, who later died in a hospital, was found injured by El Centro police in the 1100 block of Oak Street where it intersects with Villa Avenue. | COURTESY GOOGLE MAPS
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