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April 20, 2014

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Motorist was gunned down at random in front of 2 kids, police say

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Ana Ley

Vehicles and pedestrians travel past a makeshift memorial on Tropicana Avenue at Rainbow Boulevard. The memorial marks the spot where Cleottus Harvey was gunned down by a fellow motorist on Jan. 21. Police are urging witnesses to come forward with information about the shooting.

Intersection

Standing next to a packed intersection where Cleottus Harvey was gunned down at random in front of his two children last week, Lt. Ray Steiber made a public plea for help finding his killer:

“This is a busy intersection. Somebody had to see something,” Steiber told reporters during a press conference called to address the Jan. 21 slaying. “We’re asking anybody with any type of information — whether they believe that information is important or not — to come forward.”

Harvey, 26, was shot dead about 5:20 p.m. as he waited at a stoplight on Tropicana Avenue at Rainbow Boulevard with his two children in the back seat. Rush-hour traffic flooded the thoroughfare, and police think someone likely got a good view of Harvey’s shooter.

But police so far have gotten few leads in the case, and no one has come forward with information identifying a suspect. Surveillance cameras from nearby businesses did not capture the incident.

Although police have not yet determined a motive in the shooting, investigators are considering road rage as a possible factor. Steiber called the attack a random incident.

Witnesses told police that another motorist was seen speeding and driving recklessly in a dark-colored sedan before he pulled up next to Harvey’s Buick and began arguing with him. The sedan’s driver then pulled out a gun and opened fire on Harvey.

Arriving officers found Harvey’s bullet-riddled Buick crashed into two other vehicles. Harvey was taken to University Medical Center, where he died. His two children, ages 2 and 3, were not hurt. Steiber said people in the other vehicles — a Volkswagen Jetta and a Toyota Camry — weren't seriously hurt.

The suspect left the scene, driving west on Tropicana.

A makeshift memorial of artificial roses, grape-flavored cigars and Reese’s peanut butter cups has since been piled onto a small slab of concrete in front of the crash site.

“I believe the family of Mr. Harvey as well as this community as a whole deserves to have this solved,” Steiber said.

Authorities urge anyone with information regarding the incident to contact Metro homicide detectives at (702) 828-3521, or to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at (702) 385-5555.

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