Suspect Shot, Killed in I-15 Pursuit Unarmed: EPD

Officials say Aaron DeVenere of San Diego threatened to have a gun and explosives but no evidence of either was found inside the vehicle

A man shot and killed by a San Diego police officer after a highway pursuit was unarmed, officials confirmed Monday.

Aaron DeVenere, 27, of San Diego had been released from jail just three days before he and an unidentified female friend were involved in a pursuit with San Diego police and California Highway Patrol along Interstate 15 Sunday.

Video obtained by NBC 7 shows the moments leading up to DeVenere's death. A single gunshot is heard. Then, a blonde woman can be seen getting out of a brown truck and running into the arms of officers. The woman who ran to police was a friend of DeVenere who told police she was held against her will.

The pursuit began around 7 a.m. on northbound I-15 at Aero Drive in Kearny Mesa when an officer attempted to pull over the small, brown pickup truck for expired registration, officials said. .

The pursuit headed north to Escondido with DeVenere as a passenger inside the truck. During the chase, he called 911 and spoke to San Diego police and CHP dispatchers.

He told the dispatcher he was holding the female driver hostage and threatened to shoot her unless police backed off, officials said.

DeVenere also allegedly told the dispatcher that he was armed with a gun and had an explosive device.

Around 7:45 a.m., the pickup truck exited I-15 on Centre City Parkway, in Escondido.

An SDPD officer fired a single shot, killing DeVenere. Investigators said Sunday that the officer who fired felt the lives of police officers and the driver were at risk.

However, a search of the vehicle uncovered no guns or explosives, officials said Monday. Officials did recover knives from the bed of the pickup truck.

San Diego County sheriff's deputies confirmed that DeVenere was in custody up until Jan. 23. No information was released on the circumstances surrounding his previous arrest.

His father, Michael DeVenere of Las Vegas, posted a photo of Aaron when he informed family and friends of Aaron’s death. He also said details were few but that the woman inside the vehicle was his son’s friend.

Late Monday, officials confirmed the woman had a relationship with DeVenere and was initially willing to drive the truck.

She told Escondido police officers that DeVenere would not let her pull over for police. She said she believes he had a gun and, at one point, grabbed her hand and threatened to break her fingers.

The woman was taken to Palomar Medical Center in Escondido for treatment of a sprained finger.

DeVenere, 27, attended Patrick Henry High School as a member of the Class of 2004 according to his Facebook page.

Editor's Note: The suspect was shot by a San Diego police officer, not by an Escondido police officer as reported in an earlier version of this story. Also, we initially reported the woman ran to police before the shot was fired. She actually ran to police after the shooting. We regret and have corrected both errors.

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