Chico man killed in shooting, suspect on the run

A 35-year-old Chico man was killed in a Rio Lindo Avenue apartment late on May 22.

Chico police responded to the apartment, located at the back of the España Gardens complex, at about 10 p.m., after the resident there reported that someone had just been shot.

When they arrived, they found Shawn Kittleson dead of a single gunshot wound to the head, reported Sgt. Dave Barrow.

Witnesses told police that they saw Chad Justin Smith, a 27-year-old acquaintance of Kittleson, shoot him and then flee the scene, Barrow said. He declined to discuss the circumstances of the shooting, whether drugs or alcohol was involved, or if the men had been fighting prior to the incident.

“This is a case that’s still under investigation, but [Smith] is definitely our suspect at this time,” Barrow said.

Smith, whom Barrow described as "armed and extremely dangerous," was last seen driving away from the scene in a blue 1979 Pontiac Trans-Am with a personalized license plate of AM4FRAN. He is Caucasian, 6­foot, 4­inch tall and weighs about 240 pounds, Barrow said.