MILWAUKEE -- Two men have been charged for allegedly going on a shooting spree on Milwaukee's south side last weekend. The accused are 34-year-old Jose Rico of Cudahy and 24-year-old Jesus Rodriguez of Milwaukee. They face the following criminal charges:
- Endangering safety by use of a dangerous weapon (2 counts)
- Second degree recklessly endangering safety, party to a crime (2 counts)
According to the criminal complaint, a man left his house for work around 4:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 5th. He was walking on the sidewalk near 23rd and Lincoln when a newer model red Chevy Camaro drove by and a few moments later, turned around. The complaint says the man "heard a 'boom' and explained it was a gunshot." The victim suffered a single gunshot wound to his left hand.
About a half hour later, the complaint says another man was walking east on Pierce just west of S. 12th St. He told police "he observed a newer model, red Chevy Camaro with tinted windows" drive by slowly. The vehicle made a u-turn a moment later and stopped alongside him. The complaint says the person in the front passenger seat "rolled down his window and the passenger said, 'Come here.'" The man did not stop walking and "before he knew it, the passenger started shooting at him." The victim told police he heard four to five gunshots -- and "he was able to climb over a fence and lose the Camaro."
Around 5:30 a.m., after the reports of the shots fired incidents, police made a traffic stop on a red, newer model Chevy Camaro. Inside were Rico and Rodriguez. The complaint says officers "observed a .22 caliber rifle on the floor on the front passenger side between the center console and the front passenger seat."
When police conducted interviews with Rico and Rodriguez, they had slightly different versions of what happened that Sunday morning.
The complaint says Rico told police 'he obtained the firearm from a third person who was in the vehicle with them. Rico said the third person left the firearm in the vehicle and ran away." Rico denied shooting the firearm out of the vehicle or at anyone.
Rodriguez however told police "Rico did shoot a gun once out the window in the area of S. 23rd St. and W. Lincoln Ave." He also indicated Rico shot the gun again on W. Pierce St. Rodriguez told police "there was no third person in the vehicle."
Rico told police "Rodriguez is probably covering for the third guy."
A detective during his interview with Rico also "informed him that one of the victims described exactly what Rico was wearing. Rico said that maybe when he got out of the car to let the other guy out was when the victim saw him."
The complaint indicates Rico has previous served time in prison in Texas. An investigation is now underway to see how his felony conviction there relates to Wisconsin law.
Rico and Rodriguez are due back in court on Friday, February 17th.