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Suspect In Banning Fatal Shooting Spree Identified

BANNING (   —  Authorities on Sunday identified the suspect they said went on a deadly rampage in and around Banning Saturday killing two people and injuring several others.

Two men were shot dead in apparently random acts, one woman was injured by broken glass and a senior citizen was reportedly beaten up by the suspect identified as James Paul Diaz, 34.

A hometown for Diaz was not released but CBS2's Laurie Perez said he lives in Riverside County.

Diaz was arrested for two counts of suspicion of first-degree murder, one count of suspicion of attempted murder, one count of suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of suspicion of shooting at a person from a vehicle and one count of suspicion of shooting at an inhabited vehicle, according to an account in the the Los Angeles Times. Police did not immediately confirm that report.

The shootings began around 11:30 a.m. Saturday in the 700 block of John Street, where two men were found shot -- one fatally --  in a vehicle. The dead man has been identified as Paul "Joey" Lesh, 66, of Banning.

The shooting spree continued through Banning city streets to San Gorgonio Avenue at Nicolet Street, where shots were fired at another vehicle,
injuring a woman cut by broken glass.

A man was then beaten with a blunt instrument in the parking lot of the AM/PM  gas station located at 22nd Street at the freeway.

At 12:15 p.m., another man was found dead in a truck near South San Gorgonio Avenue, again just south of the freeway. That body was about a quarter mile from the first shooting scene. As of Saturday, police had not determined if the man died as a result of a shooting or killed as a result of crashing into a building.

To the west, Beaumont police later received reports that a man was knocking on doors, asking if people had seen his children, before breaking a car window on 8th Street.

Beaumont police officers spotted Diaz's vehicle and arrested him. Authorities told CBS2/KCAL9 on Saturday that a weapon was recovered in the suspect's vehicle.

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