GREENVILLE (CBSDFW.COM) – Three people are dead after a shootout at a car dealership in Hunt County. The shooting happened around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Nissan of Greenville, just off Interstate-30 in Greenville.
According to dealership owner Rick Ford, two men walked into the dealership and announced that they were federal agents. The pair didn’t show any badges or present identification.
“We didn’t give them permission, but we also didn’t tell them that they had to leave. We were told they were federal agents so we didn’t ask them to leave,” he said. “They were dressed casual. We thought they were plainclothes officers.”
CBS 11 News has been in contact with U.S. Fugitive Recovery and Extradition — a private company out of Minnesota in the business of tracking down wanted persons — and owner Stew Peters confirmed that the two people who identified themselves as federal agents were actually hired bounty hunters out of Corpus Christi.
According to Peters, bounty hunters Gabriel Bernal and Fidel Garcia Jr. had come to North Texas looking for fugitive Ramon Hutchinson who was wanted for disarming a police officer and narcotics possession.
Peters said Bernal and Garcia tracked Hutchinson to the Greenville area, where he was believed to be with a girlfriend. It was there they learned the woman was in the process of trading in a vehicle at the Nissan dealership. Peters said the bounty hunters used a ruse to get the woman back to the car lot. Their hope was Hutchinson would come with her – and he did.
The dealership owner said the men, now known to be Bernal and Garcia, waited at the for several hours for the woman and Hutchinson to arrive. When Hutchison walked in the pair again made claims that they were federal agents and attempted to arrest him.
The shootout between the trio began when Hutchinson resisted, pulled out a gun and started firing. Ford said, “I’ve been told that the two gentleman approached him with handcuffs and were going to try to arrest him and that’s when the shooting started.”
The dealership was open for business when bullets went flying, so people were running for cover. “We did have employees and customers in the dealership,” Ford said. “I can’t tell you a number, but there were several.”
When the smoke cleared all three men were dead. No one else at the dealership was shot or injured.
Ford said the dealership will be closed today and possibly tomorrow, as they make repairs, meet with employees and provide any necessary counseling and support.