(FORT WORTH, Texas) — The man identified as the shooter who opened fired at police in Texas when they pulled him over during a traffic stop Thursday died from his wounds Friday.
Evan Spencer Ebel was involved in a high speed car chase and shootout in Texas, and police were eyeing for the murder of Colorado’s prisons chief and a pizza deliveryman earlier in the week. Ebel is a paroled Colorado inmate and white supremacist gang member who signed his name “Evil Evan,” sources tell ABC News.
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 a hospital in Fort Worth and where he was put on life support. He was pronounced dead Friday. Police and medical examiners are performing an autopsy on Ebel’s body.
Ebel, 28, has been in and out of jail the last 10 years, and was a part of the white supremacist prison gang 211 Crew, his friends told ABC News.
He had the word “hopeless” tattooed on his body and signed his name “Evil Evan.”
Walker said Friday that police are still investigating whether Ebel committed the Tuesday murder of Colorado prison executive Tom Clements, and are searching through Ebel’s vehicle for evidence that might tie him to the Colorado killing.
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 that match the “box style” description.
Walker said that there is no clear motive for the Texas shootout, but they believe the Cadillac was pulled over as part of a drug stop. They are looking into his affiliation with the prison gang 211 Crew to help explain why he was in Texas.
Police are also investigating whether Ebel was involved in the murder of a pizza delivery man in Denver on Sunday. Texas authorities said evidence found today 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, 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, and friends said he “lost it” when his sister, Marin Ebel, was killed in a car crash as a teenager in 2004. The death 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.
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.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Dylan Byers, CNN
Lauren del Valle, CNN
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Z. Byron Wolf, CNN