A high-speed chase in Texas may hold the key to a pair of murder investigations two states away.
Friday afternoon police in Texas confirmed that the shell casings used in the shootout are similar to those found at the home of DOC Director Tom Clements.
Investigators from El Paso County have completed their work in Texas and have brought evidence relevant to the Tom Clements murder case back to Colorado Springs with them.
Shell casings, they say, will be analyzed by the Colorado Springs Metro Crime Lab. Ballistics comparison will help officers prove whether or not the same weapon was used in Texas and in the Clements murder.
The suspect in the chase was positively identified through fingerprints Friday as 28-year-old Evan Ebel, who has served time in Colorado and still has family there. His family has been notified of his death.
Ebel -- driving a car with Colorado plates and bearing a strong resemblance to a vehicle of interest in the murder of Tom Clements -- led law enforcement on the high-speed chase Thursday afternoon.
The resemblance to the vehicle of interest, Ebel's history in Colorado and the similarity in shell casings are all confirmed inks to the Clements case.
Clements was killed Tuesday night at his home near Monument. The gunman vanished before deputies could arrive, but witnesses saw a vehicle first parked in the area, then driving away just minutes after the murder. Read more about the Clements investigation here.
Denver police confirmed Friday that authorities are also looking into a possible link between the Texas suspect and the murder of a pizza delivery man in Golden, Colo. two days before Clements' death. Previously believed to be unrelated, sources close to the investigation told sister station KCNC that evidence was uncovered Thursday that may connect the two cases. A pizza box and a delivery driver's shirt were reportedly found in the back of the car. This source's information has not been officially confirmed by authorities. Read more about that case here.
Law enforcement is looking into the possibility that pizza delivery driver Nathan Leon was murdered for his shirt, which was then used as a disguise to get someone to open the door at Clements' home.
Ebel was shot during the chase Thursday and was taken off life support that evening. The Tarrant County, Texas coroner is currently conducting an autopsy, which is expected to take several days.
Identified as a member of white supremacist gang 211s, Ebel has a rap sheet dating back a decade. Previous crimes include robbery, weapons charges, and the assault of a prison guard while serving time in Fremont County in 2008. It's unknown why he was in Texas.
The beginning of the end for Ebel started when Deputy James Boyd tried to pull him over in Montague County in north Texas just before lunchtime Thursday . Ebel shot at him multiple times in the chest with a handgun, with one bullet grazing him in the head. As of Friday, Boyd is listed in serious condition at a Fort Worth hospital, but is expected to survive. Authorities say his bulletproof vest likely saved his life.
Ebel then sped away with law enforcement from three agencies chasing after him. Blazing down rural highways at speeds up to 100 mph or more, Ebel continued firing very deliberately at pursuing law enforcement. Authorities said in a news conference Thursday afternoon that he was not firing at random.
The chase eventually ended after Ebel crashed into the side of an 18-wheeler. He continued shooting at law enforcement until one shot him in the head.
Authorities are still reviewing dash cam video from the chase and crash. The overall investigation into the chase and any link to the Colorado murders is expected to take a number of days. 11 News is remaining in contact with authorities in both states and will release all updates as soon as they become available.
Video below is courtesy of the Wise County Messenger with the Decatur Police Chief speaking about the crash and shooting:
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