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Teen accused of shooting Clayton officer ID’d as victim in fiery crash

By Chelsea Prince, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution #atlanta-ga (CNT)

A teen accused of shooting a Clayton County officer in March was killed last month when a Newton County police chase ended in a fiery crash, authorities said.

The Newton County Sheriff’s Office announced Monday that Alejandro Guerra, 19, of McDonough, was among three men killed in the Sept. 7 wreck. Guerra was facing aggravated assault charges in the Clayton County incident and was out of jail on bond at the time.

He was in the front passenger seat of a Toyota Tacoma when Newton deputies pursued it from a neighborhood on Fairview Road early that morning. According to the sheriff’s office, two men were seen trying to break into vehicles in the neighborhood while a third followed closely behind. The third man was believed to be the getaway driver, the agency said Monday in a Facebook post.

The Toyota took off shortly after deputies arrived at the scene, the agency said. It veered off the road and hit a tree at the intersection of Jack Neely and Fairview roads in Covington.

Guerra and the two other occupants, 20-year-old Arthur Harris of Jonesboro and 19-year-old Avidan Rojas of Lithonia, were trapped inside the pickup truck. A spokeswoman for the Georgia State Patrol, which investigated the crash, said the men were unable to be rescued.

Their bodies were taken to the GBI’s crime lab in order to be identified.

The sheriff’s office said it was contacted by the Clayton County Police Department regarding Guerra shortly after confirming his identity. He was accused of exchanging gunfire with a Clayton officer during a March 24 confrontation on North Main Street near Jonesboro.

The officer confronted Guerra while checking out a report of an armed person in the area of the Sundown Suites and the Oak Run Apartments complex, according to police. Guerra allegedly fired multiple times, hitting the officer in her ballistic vest. She returned fire.

“After firing several rounds, Guerra fled the area on foot towards the Lucky Food Mart,” Clayton County police spokeswoman Aubriel Stroud said. “Additional officers responded to the location and observed Guerra hiding near two vehicles.”

The officer was taken to a hospital with minor injuries. The GBI said it did not investigate the incident as no one was seriously hurt or killed.