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Denver carjacking victim killed in multi-state crime spree identified

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Posted at 4:56 PM, Feb 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-25 19:01:35-05

DENVER — Authorities have identified the man killed during a carjacking in Denver Friday.

David Rosenthal, 58, was shot to death and his Cadillac STS stolen near the intersection of Perry Street and West Colfax Avenue around 2 a.m. on Feb. 22.

Police accuse Matthew Anthony Fanelli, 30, of pulling the trigger and then using the stolen Cadillac to commit several crimes in three other states.

Fanelli and another suspect in the multi-state crime spree, Jose Lopez-Jovel, 31, were arrested Saturday in Oregon following a shootout and high-speed chase with police, according to a release from the Oregon State Police.

Authorities say Fanelli, a New Mexico resident, began his two-day spree in Colorado Springs with a shooting outside a strip club just hours before the Denver shooting. Nobody was injured. An El Paso County Sheriff’s Office release states Fanelli was accompanied by a Hispanic male and a female employee who ran out naked. Police have not identified the accomplice or the employee.

Two hours later, Fanelli allegedly shot and killed Rosenthal and took his Cadillac, using the vehicle to commit robberies in Cheyenne, Wyoming and Park City, Utah later the same day. Surveillance video captured Lopez-Jovel and an unidentified woman accompanying Fanelli during the Wyoming and Utah robberies.

Saturday evening, police were called to a Red Robin Restaurant in Roseburg, Oregon on a report of an attempted carjacking. When police arrived, Fanelli took off in his original vehicle, leaving Lopez-Jovel behind at the scene where police were able to take him into custody, according to a news release.

Fanelli was later spotted by officers eluding southbound on Interstate 5 in Oregon. During the pursuit, police said Fanelli shot toward pursuing officers. One of the bullets struck an occupied car seat in one of three vehicles struck by the suspect’s gunfire, according to the release. An Oregon State Police patrol car was also disabled during the shooting. No injuries were reported.

Oregon State Police said the Fanelli was able to lose police and at some point attempted to carjack a man and woman driving home. Fanelli allegedly shot and critically wounded the man and assaulted the woman but did not leave with their vehicle, the release read.

Authorities later disabled Fanelli’s vehicle and took him into custody. Both men were booked into jail on multiple charges. It’s not clear if a third suspect is being sought.