Jump to content
  • Join the TowForce community.

    It looks like you're not logged in. Register to get started and to receive Tower Down Notices.

Tow truck driver shot and killed 10.07.19 (CA) "Updated 07.13.21"


Recommended Posts



A tow truck driver was shot and killed by a customer Monday in Riverside after the customer’s vehicle was loaded onto the tow truck and a fight broke out between the two men, authorities said.


About 1:10 p.m., officers responded to the corner of Bandini and Magnolia avenues for a report of a physical fight and shots fired in the Wood Streets neighborhood.


When police arrived, they found the tow truck driver, whose name and age have not been released, with gunshot wounds, said Officer Ryan J. Railsback, a spokesman for the Riverside Police Department. Paramedics arrived and pronounced the driver dead at the scene, Railsback said.


Authorities said based on preliminary information, including witness reports, it appears that the two men got into an argument after the customer’s truck was loaded onto the back of the flatbed tow truck.


“That turned into a physical altercation, that then turned into the suspect producing a firearm and killing the tow truck driver,” Railsback said. “We don’t know if the suspect is from this area or the reason he called for the tow service.”


Railsback said witnesses saw the customer flee the scene after shooting the driver. Officers searched the man’s path with a few K-9s and found him a few blocks away about 15 minutes later.


The man, whose name and age have not been released, was detained and being questioned by detectives Monday evening.




RESOURCE LINK with video



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Platinum Sponsor

OMG it is another senseless act against a tow truck driver who is doing his job.  I pray for his family, friends, and co-works.  Thank God they got the guy and let's hope justice will be done.

Contact: Doreen Aragona - Integrated Leasing - Office: 800-551-4854 Ext 20

Email: Doreen@integratedleasing.com  Cell 516-852-5740



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like Miss Doreen said, this is another senseless act, but these violent, disrespectful and lawless personalities don't think twice about mixing it up. This is really shocking to me as I live in Riverside County, California, a few miles from this shooting. Christine and I send our prayer to Liberty Towing and to the tower's family.


The link below is a Los Angeles news station with a video that has a fairly good explanation of the shooting, also to note, this wasn't you're typical PPI, but looks like a regular, routine tow in a normal neighborhood where an altercation turned bad involving an allegedly intoxicated customer. As I've commented for years and years ... there's no such thing as a routine call.


This being the second act of physical violence against tow operators in two days makes me think about customer interactions and interpersonal relations that turn aggressive and ugly.  You can bet I'll follow this incident closely.    R. 



Randall C. Resch

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

Man Accused of Fatally Shooting Tow Truck Driver Reenters Not Guilty Plea


A convicted felon accused of gunning down a tow truck driver who was preparing to take away his vehicle near downtown Riverside re-entered a not guilty plea Tuesday to a murder charge for which he was ordered to stand trial.


Javier Nieto Martinez, 35, of Riverside was arrested in 2019 on suspicion of killing 27-year-old Jesus Eligio Martinez Acosta of Colton.


Following a preliminary hearing on April 6, a judge found there was sufficient evidence to warrant a murder trial and scheduled a post-preliminary hearing arraignment several weeks later.


However, Martinez, who is representing himself, requested several postponements for reasons unclear. He asked for another Tuesday morning, but Riverside County Superior Court Judge Gail O’Rane denied the request, at which point the defendant pleaded not guilty to the murder count.


O’Rane scheduled a pretrial hearing for Oct. 13 at the Riverside Hall of Justice and left Martinez’s bail at $1 million. He’s being held at the Byrd Detention Center in Murrieta.


According to Riverside police Officer Ryan Railsback, shortly after 1 p.m. on Oct. 7, 2019, Acosta was contacted by Martinez, who wanted his vehicle taken from the 3700 block of Bandini Avenue to another location.


Railsback alleged that during the process of placing the defendant’s car on the flatbed truck, Martinez became uncooperative and “engaged the victim in an altercation” without provocation. During the ensuing tussle, Martinez allegedly pulled a handgun and shot the tow operator.


Witnesses called 911, and Martinez ran off on foot.


Patrol officers converged on the scene moments later and found Acosta mortally wounded. Riverside Fire Department paramedics attempted life-saving measures, but he was pronounced dead on arrival at Riverside Community Hospital.


Railsback said officers, with the aid of K9 units, began scouring the area, locating Martinez less than 20 minutes later in the area of Brentwood Avenue and Maplewood Place, roughly a half-mile from where the shooting occurred. He was taken into custody without a struggle.


According to court records, the defendant has prior convictions for assault resulting in great bodily injury, spousal abuse and felony vandalism.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...
Please Sign In or Sign Up