Shooting near Modesto’s Velvet Creamery leaves one dead

etracy@modbee.comDecember 11, 2013 

    Erin Tracy
    Title: Breaking news reporter
    Coverage areas: Breaking news, crime
    Bio: Erin Tracy started working for The Bee in September 2010. She has a journalism degree from Humboldt State University and previously worked at the Daily Democrat in Woodland and the Times-Standard in Eureka.
    Recent stories written by Erin
    On Twitter: @ModestoBeeCrime

A shooting behind the Velvet Creamery restaurant on McHenry Avenue left one man dead and another hospitalized Wednesday evening.

Witnesses who live in an apartment complex on Mark Randy Place near the restaurant heard a car crash followed by five gunshots about 6p.m.

Michael Cisneroz, who lives in the apartment complex but was at the nearby McDonald’s on McHenry, said he was listening to music on his laptop, so he didn’t hear any of the shots. But he saw the victims stumble into the fast-food restaurant, one bleeding from the arm and the other from the back and chest.

He said the man bleeding from the back and chest went to the cash register and asked the employee to call 911, then collapsed on the floor.

See video interview with man who tried to save victim's life

Cisneroz said he and another man put on rubber gloves and got rags and napkins from employees to put pressure on the man’s wounds.

“He was just trying to maintain his breathing, and that became real restricted … he had a hard time catching his breath and he ultimately stopped breathing for about 10 seconds, and that is when we started doing CPR, which I have never done in my life,” Cisneroz said. “He started breathing again after three or four sets (of chest compressions), he took a gasp and he just was struggling to get his breath, and then the medics came.”

The man later died at the hospital, said Modesto police spokeswoman Heather Graves.

“If I was ever wounded like that, I would hope somebody would help me, too,” Cisneroz said. “I was just trying to help that man. He was shot, he was bleeding, he was dying, so we didn’t want to see him die right there. I was just trying to save a life.”

The man who was shot in the arm is in stable condition.

Cisneroz said the man who died was clutching a large bag of marijuana, which his friend at one point took from him and threw into the trash at McDonald’s.

Graves could not confirm whether either of the victims had marijuana in his possession and did not know Wednesday evening what might have motivated the shooting. She said three people who might have been involved were detained and were being questioned by detectives Wednesday night.

The car neighbors heard crash was left running behind Velvet Creamery. The back passenger window was shattered and there were bullet holes in the door.

Graves said she did not know whether the car was driven by the victims or the shooters.

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