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Three shot, one dead; Suspected shooter reported to be father of female victim

On Friday, February 10, Fallbrook Sheriff's deputies found three people shot, including one deceased, in response to a radio call of an assault with a firearm at Atkins Nursery in Fallbrook.

A suspect was then taken in without incident.

The Fallbrook Sheriff's deputies arrived on scene in the 3100 block of Reche Rd. just before 3 pm and found the first two victims just outside a barn on the property. The victims had gunshot wounds to the upper torso, according to San Diego Sheriff Kelly Martinez.

Reche Rd. in Fallbrook was closed from Gird Rd. to Old Hwy 395 for several hours while the crime scene was active.

North County Fire Protection District PIO John Choi was able to confirm early on for Village News that there was an active crime scene and there were three victims, two transported to Palomar Hospital and one deceased. "Two people have been transported."

One victim was reported by Homicide Lt. Steffen at a press conference late Friday night as a 35–40-year-old female and believed to be the daughter of the shooter, identified as 76-year-old Enrique Barajas Gutierrez. The other victim was a 65–70-year-old male. Both victims were taken to a local hospital for treatment. Sheriff Martinez, who came to Fallbrook for a press conference reported, "Both victims are expected to survive."

Lt. Steffen reported, "As deputies continued their search for a suspect, they located a third victim who was deceased inside the barn. This victim was a male, 55-60-years-old and appeared to have gunshot wounds to his upper torso." He continued, "While inside the barn, deputies contacted a subject who was later identified as the shooter in this incident. Gutierrez was arrested and transported to the Fallbrook Sheriff's Station without incident."

Lt. Steffen reported, "The Sheriff's Homicide Unit responded and assumed responsibility for the investigation. At this point in the investigation, the identity of the deceased victim is known. We are not releasing that information until the family has been notified. The motivation and circumstances are still under investigation."

"The two victims in the hospital underwent surgery and are expected to survive. We are still identifying the relationship between Gutierrez and the other victims," Steffen reported. All the victims were reported to be employees of Atkins Nursery.

Lt. Stephen reported that witnesses are still being questioned and a motive hasn't been identified. The firearm used was believed to be a rifle, but the type and caliber were currently unknown.

The suspect, Gutierrez was arrested by Fallbrook Sheriffs, processed at the Fallbrook Sheriff's station, and was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for 187 PC - Murder.

Sheriff Kelly Martinez and Fallbrook Substation Lt. Hernandez both conveyed their appreciation for multiple local agencies who assisted, including Carlsbad Police Department, Escondido Police Dept., Oceanside Police Dept., California Highway Patrol and North County Fire and the Carlsbad Fire Department.

According to Lt. Steffen, rumors of a second shooter or a second crime scene were unsubstantiated.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Homicide Unit at (858) 285-6330/after hours at (858) 565-5200. You can remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

To watch a video of the press conference given by Homicide detective Lt. Steffan, go to

To watch a video of the press conference given by San Diego Sheriff Kelly Martinez, go to


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