Father, son arrested in gang-related Kennewick shooting. 2 other kids were in the car

·2 min read
Bob Brawdy

A father and son are accused of participating in a Tuesday gang-related shooting on Clearwater Avenue.

John M. Salinas, 37, and his son, John M. Gomez, 16, are accused of being in the same black Mercedes when a gunfight erupted with the occupants of a silver Chrysler 300.

The exchange left Salinas with six bullet wounds in his right arm and back, show court documents.

The bandages and sling were visible as he appeared by video from Benton County jail on Thursday afternoon. He is being held in lieu of $500,000 bail on suspicion of drive-by shooting and illegally possessing a firearm.

Salinas also was ordered to stay away from the three younger children reportedly in his car when the shooting started.

Gomez was arrested on suspicion of first-degree assault on Tuesday. Formal charges have not been filed yet in Benton-Franklin Juvenile Court.

Salinas, Gomez and one of his other sons have ties to Norteno gangs, according to court documents.

Details about what led to the shooting on the 4400 block of Clearwater Avenue differ.

In one version, Salinas allegedly grabbed a gun and left his home with his 9-year-old daughter to pick up Gomez and his 13-year-old son because they were caught car prowling and someone pulled a gun., according to court documents.

In the other version, Gomez and his brother were walking near Kamiakin High School when someone in a silver vehicle drove up and pulled a gun on them.

A witness reported seeing the black Mercedes picking up the two boys from an apartment complex near Kamiakin before the shooting. A Chrysler 300 nearly hit the rear of the Mercedes, according to court documents.

Salinas allegedly sped up to catch up to the Chrysler. A witness reported seeing the two vehicles stop in the street and the driver of the Chrysler pulled out a gun and began firing.

It’s believed that Salinas returned fire. It’s unknown if anyone in the other car was hit.

Salinas allegedly drove to a store on the corner of Union Street and Clearwater Avenue. Security cameras showed Gomez get out of the car with the gun. It’s unclear where he went from there.

His father drove the Mercedes to West Albany Place and North Tweedt Street about a block away from the shooting scene. He then got into a different car and headed to Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland for his wounded hand.

Along the way, he dropped off his 9-year-old daughter at home.

Police impounded the Mercedes and searched it, and discovered four spent .45 caliber shell casings near the driver’s seat.

Investigators did not find the gun that fired the shots, but they were able to determine that it had been used at a Jan. 7 shooting at Pasco’s Sage and Sun motel, said officials.