|Texas Shootout Shell Casings Match Colo. Prison Chief Evidence|
|By CAROL McKINLEY (@CarolAMcKinley) , CLAYTON SANDELL (@Clayton_Sandell) and COLLEEN CURRY||Mar 22, 2013, 8:52 AM|
Shell casings found at the scene of a high-speed car chase and shootout in Texas match casings found at the home of the slain Colorado prison chief, according to a Texas police search warrant affidavit obtained by ABC News.
"Hornady 9mm shell casings were recovered at the [Colorado] scene, which are the same brand and caliber used by the ... suspect in the Wise County [Texas] incident," the affidavit read.
This is the first evidence police have released linking Evan Spencer Ebel, a 28-year-old, paroled Colorado inmate, to the murder of Colorado prison executive Tom Clements.
Earlier this afternoon, Ebel, a white supremacist gang member who signed his name "Evil Evan," was identified as the shooter who opened fire at police in Texas when they pulled him over during a traffic stop Thursday. According to the affidavit, Ebel used a 9mm Smith and Wesson handgun.
He died of his wounds today.
Ebel shot one deputy three times and then started a 100-mph car chase across two Texas counties while continuing to shoot at police on Thursday. The chase ended when the driver was hit by an 18-wheel truck. Ebel emerged from the wreck and kept shooting at cops until he was cut down by return fire, according to Wise County Sheriff David Walker.
Ebel was flown to John Peter Smith hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, where he was put on life support.
He was pronounced dead today. Police and medical examiners are performing an autopsy on Ebel's body.
Ebel, who had the word "hopeless" tattooed on his body, had been in and out of jail for the last 10 years, and was a part of the white supremacist prison gang 211 Crew, his friends told ABC News.
Clements, 58, was shot and killed at his home. Neighbors told police they saw a black, "box style" car in the neighborhood at the time of the murder. Ebel was driving a black Cadillac with Colorado license plates, a vehicle that that matched the "box style" description.
Walker said that there is no clear motive for the Texas shootout, but they believed the Cadillac was pulled over as part of a drug stop. They were looking into Ebel's affiliation with the prison gang 211 Crew to help explain why he was in Texas.
Police were also investigating whether Ebel was involved in the murder of a pizza delivery man in Denver on Sunday. Texas authorities said evidence found in the suspect's car -- including a Domino's pizza uniform jacket and a cardboard pizza box -- may link him to the unsolved murder of Nathan Leon, 27, who was killed delivering pizza near Golden, Colo.
Friends of Ebel, who grew up in Wheat Ridge, Colo., told ABC News that he had been depressed and on edge for years. He had been in prison on an assortment of assault, robbery and menacing charges dating back to 2005, according to jail records.
"He was depressed a lot," Ryan Arici, a friend of Ebel's from Wheat Ridge, Colo., told ABC News. "And he was a dark person. His walls were painted black and his windows were blacked out."
Ebel dropped out of school, where he had been in a special education program for "severely impacted" students. Friends said he "lost it" when his sister, Marin Ebel, was killed in a car crash as a teenager in 2004. The death seemed to set off a string of criminal behaviors and jail stints for Ebel.
"Everyone was always afraid of Evan. Even the hardest kids were afraid of Evan," one friend told ABC News.
Ricky Alengi, another friend from Wheat Ridge, said that Ebel had been doing better upon his latest release from prison. Alengi said he was shocked to find out about the shootout in Texas.
"I thought he was getting better," Alengi said. "He was writing books in prison. His mom and I were going to see him soon."
His father, attorney Jack Ebel, once testified on his behalf in front of the Colorado legislature about prison conditions for mentally ill inmates. He did not immediately return calls for comment.
His mother, Jody Mangue, who now lives in Costa Rica, was distraught over the news of her son, friends said.