Tue. May 28th, 2024

California Man Gets Sentenced for Tragic Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy Headed to School

Samantha Parker By Samantha Parker May25,2024

ORANGE COUNTY, Calif. (TCD) — A 27-year-old man will spend 40 years to life in state prison for fatally shooting a 6-year-old boy in a road rage incident after the child’s mother flipped the defendant’s girlfriend off.

The Orange County District Attorney’s Office announced April 12 that a judge handed down the sentence against Marcus Eriz after a jury convicted him in January of one felony count of second-degree murder, one felony count of shooting into an occupied vehicle, and two felony enhancements of the personal discharge of a firearm causing great bodily injury and death in connection with Aiden Leos’ death.

On the morning of May 21, 2021, 26-year-old Wynne Lee allegedly drove in front of Leos’ mother on the 55 Freeway while she was driving her son to kindergarten. Leos’ mother, identified by KTTV-TV as Joanna Cloonan, reportedly stuck out her middle finger at Lee.

At the time, Eriz was in the back seat of Lee’s vehicle. According to prosecutors, Eriz loaded a firearm and fired at Cloonan’s vehicle, hitting Leos as a result. The victim’s mother heard a loud noise while driving away, and her son said, “Ow.” She pulled over on the freeway, got her son out of the car, and called 911. The boy was transported to the Children’s Hospital of Orange County, where he died.

According to the district attorney’s office, the California Highway Patrol began an “intense manhunt” and later arrested Eriz and Lee on June 6, 2021.

Leos’ parents were not in court, but Eriz addressed the victim’s mother and said, “Ms. Cloonan, I’m truly sorry for taking your beautiful son away from you. I am so sorry for ever hurting him and for the pain that he went through because of me,” KABC-TV reports. 

Eriz continued, “Every night I pray for Aiden and your family. I know the burden and pain that you carry will never change.”

Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said in a statement, “The depth of pain of a mother desperately trying to find some way to help her little boy as he lay dying is excruciating.”

Lee awaits trial on charges of accessory after the fact and one misdemeanor count of having a concealed firearm in a vehicle. If convicted, she faces a maximum of three years in state prison and one year in the Orange County Jail. She posted $100,000 bond in July 2021 and remains on GPS monitoring.

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Samantha Parker

By Samantha Parker

Samantha is a seasoned journalist with a passion for uncovering the truth behind the headlines. With years of experience in investigative reporting, she has covered a wide range of topics including politics, crime, and entertainment. Her in-depth analysis and commitment to factual accuracy make her a respected voice in the field of journalism.

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2 thoughts on “California Man Gets Sentenced for Tragic Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy Headed to School”
  1. It’s heart-wrenching to hear stories like this. People need to control their anger and resolve conflicts peacefully. My deepest condolences to the family of the little boy. Justice has been served, but it can never bring back the precious life lost.

  2. It’s heart-wrenching to read such tragic news. Justice has been served in this case, but it’s still devastating to think about the loss of such a young life due to road rage. We need to prioritize safety and kindness on the roads to prevent such senseless tragedies in the future.

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