IRVINE — A disgruntled construction worker is suspected of having ambushed his former supervisor in a parking lot about 3 p.m. Wednesday, shooting him in the arm and chest, police said.
The suspect, identified as Jody Dion Patterson, 26, was arrested at his home in Sun City in Riverside County several hours later on suspicion of attempted murder, police said. Matt David Mabry, 27, the superintendent of a construction site at MacArthur Boulevard and Fairchild Road, underwent surgery at Western Medical Center-Santa Ana on Wednesday night. Mabry, who lives in Victorville, is expected to survive, Police Lt. Mike White said.
White said Patterson had recently been transferred to another job site, then laid off from Raymond Interior Systems in Orange. Witnesses reported having seen him loitering around the construction area earlier in the day before Mabry was shot in a nearby parking structure, White said.
"It appears that he was waiting for him," White said.
Mabry was shot as he was driving a pickup truck on the second floor of the parking structure, White said. The bullets, believed to have been fired from a rifle, struck Mabry from the passenger side of the vehicle, he said.
For three hours after the shooting, the intersection at MacArthur and Jamboree Road and also a short stretch of the Corona del Mar Freeway were blocked off as police searched for the suspect.
Police, believing that Patterson was hiding in the parking structure, used dogs and called in a SWAT team, White said. He was not to be found there, however.
Riverside County sheriff's deputies, working with Irvine police, went to Patterson's residence in Sun City and saw that he was inside, White said. SWAT teams from both departments surrounded the house. Investigators made contact with Patterson, who then surrendered without incident, police said.
This is at least the second time in less than two months that a disgruntled employee has been named as a suspect in the shooting of an immediate supervisor. On Jan. 12, a former auto mechanic at El Gato Auto Repair in Santa Ana fatally shot Alfonso Romero, who had been his boss, and wounded two other people after being told he was fired.