A 42-year-old man was arrested after crashing a vehicle that was stolen from the home of a Fountain Hills couple killed during a Scottsdale-area murder spree earlier this month, officials said Thursday.
The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said Keith Dees attempted to flee from deputies after the vehicle was located near 70th Avenue and McDowell Road about 7 p.m. Wednesday night.
Dees was driving the vehicle, and as he fled from deputies, he crashed the car, a white Nissan Altima, near 99th Avenue and Thomas Road, said MCSO Sgt. Joaquin Enriquez. Dees attempted to run off, but was caught and arrested, Enriquez said.
The bodies of 70-year-old Mary Simmons and 72-year-old Byron Thomas were found by sheriff’s deputies at their Fountain Hills home in the early-morning hours of June 4 after they went to the home to check on their welfare, officials said.
The house was burglarized on June 6, the Sheriff’s Office said. Deputies were called to the home at about 3:30 a.m. on reports of suspicious vehicles near the house.
Two vehicles were stolen from the home during the burglary, Enriquez said.
The first of the vehicles, a black Mercedes, was found on June 8, Enriquez said.
It offered little information on the burglary or location of the Altima, which also was stolen, Enriquez added.
Dees was booked into the Fourth Avenue Jail on one count of vehicle theft, Enriquez said.
The case still is under investigation, Enriquez added.
Authorities say Simmons and Thomas were the last of six victims of 56-year-old Dwight Lamon Jones, whose murderous spree was an effort to “right some wrongs” stemming from a divorce and custody battle that began in 2009, according to court records and statements from his ex-wife.
The shooting spree began on May 31, when a prominent forensic psychiatrist was gunned down outside his office, and continued through the following weekend. Jones used the same .40-caliber handgun linked to the killings to take his own life as police closed in on his Scottsdale hotel room the following Monday morning, officials said.
Scottsdale police said the Fountain Hills couple and Jones were friends who met through tennis and would occasionally gather to play at city parks.
A Fountain Hills man discusses a death investigation at his next door neighbors’ home on June 4, 2018.
Craig Harris, The Republic | azcentral.com
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