St. George man arrested after shots fired during road rage incident

Police respond to a report of shots being fired during a suspected road rage incident, St. George, Utah, Dec. 29, 2018 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — A local man is in jail for multiple felony offenses after a road rage incident ended in gunfire Saturday night, triggering a massive response of more than 20 officers and a SWAT team that descended on a neighborhood near 500 South just off Bluff Street.

Gustavo Estevez, 44, of St. George booking photo, Washington County, Utah, Dec. 30, 2018 | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, St. George News

Gustavo Estevez, 44, of St. George was arrested and faces numerous charges, including a first-degree felony for disarming a police officer firearm, as well as four third-degree felony counts of aggravated assault and assaulting a police officer, a class A misdemeanor. He also faces two class B misdemeanors, one for discharging a firearm in city limits and carrying a dangerous weapon under the influence of alcohol/drugs.

The charges stem from an incident that began Saturday evening with a shots fired report to 911 involving a dispute between two drivers that resulted in one of the vehicles being struck with bullets, St. George Police Captain Mike Giles told St. George News at the scene.

Addresses were withheld from the original report as it published Saturday night to protect the officers still working an active scene.

Read more: SWAT rolls in when shots fired during road rage incident

Officers were dispatched to the area where the incident reportedly occurred and discovered a bullet hole in the trunk of the vehicle driven by the individual who had called police, according to additional information from the probable cause statement submitted to the Washington County Attorney’s Office early Sunday morning.

The statement said there were four occupants in that vehicle when the shooting occurred, and further analysis showed that the bullet could have entered the cab of the vehicle if not stopped by a metal pillar built into the vehicle’s frame.

Police respond to a report of shots being fired during a suspected road rage incident, St. George, Utah, Dec. 29, 2018 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

According to the original report, the shooter fled the area after the incident, and a few blocks away, officers located a blue passenger car that matched the description of the vehicle the shots were fired from. A check of the vehicle’s registration listed Estevez as the legal owner with an address near 100 West and 500 South. Officers responded and cordoned off the area and were soon followed by a SWAT team in an armored vehicle that pulled into the staging area set up just off Bluff Street.

Officers called out to the suspect, instructing him to come out of the residence. Estevez appeared to comply at first, but once he reached the front gate he attempted to lock it. When one of the officers attempted to place him under arrest, he reportedly resisted and became combative, even thrusting the back of his head into one of the officers’ foreheads at some point during the altercation.

Once handcuffed, Estevez was transported to the St. George Police Department for questioning, smelling strongly of alcohol, according to the statement, which continued to state that the suspect admitted to drinking “half bottle of Tequila at some point in the evening.” A preliminary breathalyzer test administered by police showed a blood alcohol concentration of .119.

Upon further questioning the suspect allegedly admitted to owning a gun that he kept at his residence, the report said, but he denied any knowledge of a vehicle being shot.

SWAT at staging area after a report of shots being fired during a suspected road rage incident, St. George, Utah, Dec. 29, 2018 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Later, during a search of the man’s residence, officers found a 9 mm High Point in a trashcan located next to the suspect’s parked vehicle. The handgun had “multiple rounds in the magazine, as well as one in the chamber,” the report says. The gun was found in a jacket that also contained Estevez’s drivers license.

Officers searching the scene where the shooting took place located a 9 mm expended shell casing that matched the ammunition located in the suspect’s 9 mm High Point seized earlier by police.

Back at the police station, Estevez again resisted while two officers attempted to place him back in handcuffs, and during the short struggle, he attempted to grab one of the officer’s weapons but was unsuccessful. He was taken into custody and transported to Purgatory Correctional Facility where he remains on  $43,310 bail at the writing of this report.

The record also shows that Estevez was on parole when the incident took place and has multiple aliases and cases involving drug and weapons charges out of Salt Lake County dating back to 2008. He also spent time in Utah State Prison before being released.

This report is based on statements from police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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  • Carpe Diem December 30, 2018 at 7:08 pm

    Holy Guacamole! Back into the revolving doors of justice, Gustavo! Muy magnifico! Not to worry, you will be out soon, no doubt.

  • stevenxfiles December 30, 2018 at 8:15 pm


    • KR567 December 31, 2018 at 7:52 am

      Yeah right blame it on the wall not being there !!

  • justsaying December 30, 2018 at 8:49 pm

    Umm, yeah, about that WALL

  • utahdiablo December 30, 2018 at 11:49 pm

    Let me see here…how does that Congress “Gang of 8” deal go again?….uh, Play By the Rules, pay a small fine, learn English…oh yeah, and No Felonies….oh well, better luck next time

  • Mean Momma December 30, 2018 at 11:58 pm

    Why? Why? Why do they come to St. George???

    • KR567 December 31, 2018 at 7:54 am

      For the same reasons the CA home owners come here and buy 3 or 4 houses and turn them into rentals and go back to CA

    • Comment December 31, 2018 at 12:43 pm

      They come here to escape Cali and vegas where their type has already turned the quality of life into complete crap. They’re gonna do the same to So UT. It’s what they do. They can’t help themselves.

      we need a wall

      • tazzman December 31, 2018 at 1:39 pm

        A wall? Is this guy here illegally? I must have missed that in the story.

        • Carpe Diem December 31, 2018 at 1:47 pm

          Right?? You would think after all the drug, gun and alias charges, he would have been deported for good. Oh, wait…

  • Carpe Diem December 31, 2018 at 6:22 am

    Why do some of the stories lately mimic spaghetti westerns? Drunk on tequila, shooting at 4 guys riding a horse who cut him off, on Main street? The posse went after this guy who holed up in his hacienda. Or the rifleman, taking his piece to the bar after a few drinks to settle some obscure score? The frisky pair from out of town smuggling their goods, while on the run from the law, with one pistolero between them?

    Mebbe we need to build some gallows to slow down this nonsense out Purgatory… – or better yet Washington County Fair way. Every single one of these perps has a bad record and apparently just used to getting their hands slapped a tich. What better way to send a message and raise attendance at the fair?

    Feed two birds with one scone! Happy New Year!

    • Comment December 31, 2018 at 12:41 pm

      It’s really bizarre isn’t it. It would be kinda funny if it weren’t people committing some very serious crimes

      • Carpe Diem December 31, 2018 at 1:32 pm

        I don’t get it. Stranger than fiction. Which makes those goofy old westerns just look more believable. Maybe they aren’t so corny after all!

        • Mean Momma December 31, 2018 at 11:08 pm

          It’s the wild, Wild West

  • Real Life December 31, 2018 at 10:59 am

    Better get used to it.

  • Redbud January 1, 2019 at 2:37 pm

    Increasing border security, including the wall, would reduce these kinds of incidents from happening. It is my prayer the government remains shut down until an agreement on the wall can be reached. Build that wall, Trump 2020!

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