California man faces attempted murder charge for shooting at semi with AR-15

CHP

The California Highway Patrol has arrested and charged a man who is accused of opening fire on a moving semi truck in Modesto on Tuesday.

The shooting was reported around 10:45 a.m. on northbound Highway 99.

The truck driver, a 25 year old California resident, told police he had been traveling in a construction zone with slowed traffic when a person in a white GMC SUV pulled up alongside him in the fast lane and opened fire on his truck.

A bullet believed to have been fired by an AR-15 struck the truck door and shattered the window. The truck driver wasn’t injured.

After firing on the truck, the GMC sped off, traveling west towards San Joaquin County, brandishing the AR-15 at other drivers. One of those drivers was able to get a license plate number for the GMC.

Shortly before 2 p.m., officers with the Delta Regional Auto Theft Team spotted the GMC at a Stockton gas station.

Police were able to arrest Derrick Terrell Thomas, 25, without further incident.

CHP says that a black AR-15 was found at Thomas’s residence. Police say that he has prior felony convictions.

The motive for the shooting is unclear.

CHP booked Thomas into the Stanislaus County Public Safety Center and charged him with attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited vehicle, assault with a deadly weapon and brandishing a firearm. His bail was set at $700,000.

An additional charge of brandishing is pending with the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office, according to CHP.