Two Colorado men, including a combat veteran, are accused of embarking on a random shooting spree after parking their vehicle at an intersection in Florida and opening fire at motorists.
The suspects are Duane Lee Storey, 38, of Grand Junction, Colorado, and Cody Sean Brelsford, 41, of Placerville, Colorado. According to statements provided to investigators, Storey is accused of saying, “It was time to go to war,” a Washington County sheriff’s release said.
Storey is being held in the Bay County Jail on charges of fleeing police, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and trespassing while armed, sheriff’s officials said in the news release, which was posted to their Facebook page.
Brelsford is also being held at Bay County Jail on charges of possession of narcotics equipment and trespassing while armed. Both suspects will face multiple felony charges in Washington County.
“This is a random act of violence,” Sheriff Kevin Crews said in the news release, which says the suspects “did not know either victim of the shooting.”
“I am very thankful no one lost their lives from the cowardly acts of this individual. I am very pleased these suspects are behind bars for we may never know what their next move may have been,” the sheriff’s statement continued.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Authorities Say the Men Parked Their Jeep Cherokee in the Middle of an Intersection & Opened Fire at Passing Motorists
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call at approximately 12:36 a.m. on December 5, “immediately dispatching deputies to a man who stated he had been shot. Shortly after the first call was received, another call came in from a second victim reporting they had been shot at as well.”
The intersection of State Rd. 79 and 20 in Ebro is where the scene began, authorities say.
A 21-year-old male, traveling Eastbound on State Rd. 20 “came to an abrupt stop when he realized a 2003 Jeep Cherokee was parked in the middle of the intersection. The driver of the Jeep Cherokee, 38-year-old, Duane Lee Storey began firing rounds at the 28 ft. box truck,” the Sheriff’s Department alleged.
“A Chipley resident traveling North on State Rd. 79 observed the vehicle parked in the middle of the intersection. The driver turned around thinking the vehicle was broke down. As he approached the intersection the suspect started shooting at him also. Both victims immediately started backing out of the line of fire.”
2. Authorities Say the Men Were ‘Heavily Armed’ & Wearing Body Armor When Arrested
According to the Sheriff’s Department, Storey “returns to his vehicle and travels South on State Rd. 79 towards Bay County. Washington County Sheriff’s Office notified Bay County Sheriff’s Office of the incident and provided them with the suspects’ vehicle description. An alert Bay County deputy located the suspects’ vehicle traveling on Back Beach Rd. in Panama City Beach. The suspect fled from the Bay County deputies.”
They were caught a short time later. Neither shooting victim died.
A short time later, “deputies apprehended the shooting suspect along with his passenger, 41-year-old, Cody Sean Brelsford at the Port of Panama City. Deputies also recovered hundreds of rounds of ammunition, several firearms and ballistic vests inside the suspects’ vehicle.
Washington County deputies and EMS arrive on scene to find the driver of the box truck has sustained a gunshot wound to the neck. He was transported to a Bay County hospital where he underwent surgery and is expected to make a full recovery. The driver of the other vehicle did not sustain any injuries. The suspect shot both vehicles multiple times disabling both vehicles.”
The Bay County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a news release, “Last night, we were notified of a shooting in Washington County on Highway 79 and a vehicle description was given. Lt Chad King observed the vehicle traveling East on Back Beach Rd. The occupants pointed a handgun with a laser at Lt King. A pursuit of the vehicle began including additional BCSO Deputies and PCPD Officers. The vehicle drove through a barricade and entered the Port of Panama City.”
The vehicle “reached a dead end at the Port and an armed standoff ensued. The subjects were heavily armed and were wearing body armor. Deputies were able to take up tactical positions and begin negotiations. The suspects eventually surrendered.”
Sheriff Tommy Ford said, “This was an extremely dangerous situation with heavily armed subjects. I’m proud of the way that Deputies responded risking their lives to protect our community.”
3. The Men Are Being Looked at in the Shooting Death of a Nurse Near Nashville
Authorities in Nashville, Tennessee, are exploring whether the men might be connected to the shooting death of a nurse named Caitlyn Kaufman, who was shot along Interstate 440 while she was driving to work on December 3.
That news came in a press conference, which you can watch below, via Nashville police.
Detective Chris Dickerson said that authorities in Florida and Tennessee are comparing the the two cases, but they still haven’t determined whether the two Colorado men traveled through Nashville. He said the Florida incident “fit the MO” of something that could have happened to Kaufman, but added, “We don’t know the travel, the path, whether they came through Nashville.”
Police said Kaufman was traveling to her job in the ICU of a local hospital when she was fatally shot on the interstate. Her car was shot six times. Police do not yet have a suspect or motive. She was shot on Thursday night, December 3, between 6:05 p.m. and 6:10 p.m., Nashville police said in the press conference.
4. Storey’s Wife Recently Obtained a Restraining Order Against the Combat Veteran
According to the Associated Press, Storey’s mother and wife had raised concerns about him before the shootings.
The mother had asked the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office to check on her son when he “made odd statements about being part of the CIA.”
Storey is a combat veteran whose mother believes has PTSD, and he had taken multiple guns from her home, according to AP. His mother also claimed Storey had made multiple “suicide by cop” comments in the past. AP reported that his vehicle was “seen headed east on Interstate 70 in western Colorado on Dec. 1.”
In addition, Storey’s wife had recently taken out a restraining order against him, fearing he would harm someone or himself, AP reported.
His name comes up listed to a trucking company LLC.
5. ‘I Can Come Undone Real Quick,’ Brelsford Warned on Facebook
Brelsford’s Facebook page says he has lived in Telluride, Colorado. “Be careful. I can come undone real quick. Love y’all,” a May post on his page says.
He previously worked in maintenance for large events like the U.S. Open, according to his page. “You ever just wanna go home but nothing feels like home anymore,” another May post read.
In 2019, he wrote, “life is what you make it. make it right.” Other photos showed him with friends or enjoying the outdoors. He wrote that he was “self-employed.”