A man fatally shot in Lakewood started the shootout by lying in wait and firing at a fellow gang member who previously shot him, police said Wednesday.
The victim was identified as Jesse Hinton, 43, of Tacoma.
Hinton and the other man belonged to different sets of the same gang but had a bad history, police said. The other man allegedly shot Hinton years back.
“It is believed that the shooting from (Tuesday) was retaliation for all the previous shootings and possibly other issues,” police Lt. Chris Lawler said.
Officers believe Hinton and two friends planned a hit on the other man and waited for him outside a barber shop in the 8900 block of South Tacoma Way.
The other man did not see Hinton and his accomplices sitting in a van, watching and waiting. He went outside about 2:10 p.m. to speak with a friend in a white car.
Hinton allegedly drove the van through the parking lot and the three men inside opened fire on the other man. The car was hit several times and stray bullets shattered windows in the barber shop and a bar next door.
“It is believed the target fired back with his own gun and struck Hinton as he drove away,” Lawler said.
The man targeted in the shooting sped off with his friend after returning fire at Hinton’s van. Deputies later stopped them in Parkland.
Hinton also tried to flee but flattened one of the van’s tires and hit several curbs. Police believe his erratic driving was because he was wounded.
The van was found crashed into a telephone pole at 87th Street Southwest and Durango Street Southwest. Hinton was dead in the driver’s seat when officers arrived.
Witnesses reported seeing at least one man run from the crash scene. Another is suspected of running from the parking lot where the shooting happened. Neither has been arrested.
The men in the white car were detained, questioned and released Tuesday night.
Detectives said the man targeted by Hinton was uncooperative.
The investigation is ongoing and police are searching for the two men who were with Hinton.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653