Suspect in Modesto BMW dealership shooting believed from Bay Area

A motorcyclist shot a man in a car Wednesday afternoon, critically wounding the man near auto row in north Modesto, authorities said.

The victim had surgery Wednesday night for gunshot wounds to his torso and shoulder, but was expected to survive. Police said the suspect, believed to be from the Bay Area, fled on a high- performance motorcycle.

Investigators believe the gunman and the victim know one another. The victim's name, age and hometown were not released.

The suspect was last seen driving southbound on McHenry Avenue, said Lt. Charles Grom of the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department.

Grom said the victim, who was driving a black late-model BMW, was able to give deputies what they believe is the suspect's first name.

The shooting occurred about 12:45 p.m.

Investigators believe the victim was shot on Bangs Avenue, close to the Valley BMW dealership at McHenry Avenue and Bangs. They believe the victim then backed into a driveway leading into the dealership from Bangs.

The car was stopped in the middle of the driveway with its doors open.

A Toyota dealership mechanic, who works across Bangs from the crime scene, said he heard four or five gunshots. A minute later, he ran outside to see emergency workers pulling the victim out of the BMW and loading him into an ambulance.

Valley BMW is at 4369 McHenry Ave., on the west side of the street. Bangs was closed to traffic as detectives investigated.

The shooting took place along Modesto's auto row, where many dealerships are clustered. Authorities were pulling surveillance videos from dealerships to try to determine what happened.

Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at or 578-2337.

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