PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) --  Phoenix police say a homeless man punched another man in the face, and that victim then fell into the street and was fatally struck by a car.

The incident occurred Monday morning in the area of 19th and Glendale avenues

Phoenix police officers were initially called out to investigate an accident involving an injured person.

When officers arrived, they found the victim, 23-year-old R.J. Dunton, on the ground. He was transported to a hospital where he later died from his injuries. 

Witnesses told officers that Dunton was walking on the east side of 19th Avenue when the suspect, later identified as 37-year-old Aaren Shivers, walked up to him.

Police say Shivers then punched Dunton in the face, causing him to fall into the street.

A vehicle traveling northbound on the 19th Avenue then ran over Dunton. Police say Shivers then took off.

Police were able to obtain surveillance video from a city bus that was traveling behind the vehicle that struck Dunton.

According to police, the surveillance video showed Shivers "intentionally striking Dunton with a closed fist to his face." 

Officers later located Shivers and took him to Phoenix police headquarters for questioning.

Shivers told officers that Dunton said "something unknown to him" when he punched him. Shivers told police he then fought back by hitting Dunton and continued to walk following the incident. Shivers added that he never saw Dunton before the incident. 

Shivers was later arrested and charged with second-degree murder. 

Gina Read was a close friend of Dunton's and they worked together at one n ten. He called her grandma.

“He was able to get himself off of the streets and he had his own apartment and was doing really well. I just couldn’t believe it. He was such a sweet and kind kid. He always had time to listen to anyone who wanted to say anything. If they needed anything he was the first one to step up,” said Read.

 


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