Suspect In Fatal La Quinta Shooting Dies At Hospital

Suspect In Fatal La Quinta Shooting Dies At Hospital

News Staff

A man accused of fatally shooting his brother-in-law and wounding his sister at a La Quinta home, then leading police on a pursuit into the Inland Empire where he shot himself, died at a hospital over the weekend, sheriff’s officials reported Monday.

Stacy Rowan, 56, of La Quinta, died at 11:35 a.m. Saturday. He had been hospitalized since Thursday.

Sheriff’s deputies say that just before 8 a.m. that day, Rowan shot and killed his sister’s 72-year-old husband, Michael J. McGrath of La Quinta, at a home in the 54700 block of Avenida Vallejo. He was also accused of shooting his sister, who was hospitalized and has since been released.

Following the shooting, Rowan fled in a pickup truck, triggering a chase that ended near Archibald Avenue and Inland Empire Boulevard in Ontario, where he pulled over and shot himself, according to Sgt. Ben Ramirez of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.

Court records show that Rowan was due in court on the morning of the shooting in connection with his July 30 arrest at the same Avenida Vallejo address on suspicion of illegally possessing several firearms and “materials consistent with explosives.” Sheriff’s deputies were sent to the home at 12:38 p.m. that day to investigate”a family disturbance,” according to sheriff’s Sgt. Steve Davis.

Rowan, who was released from jail three days later on $25,000 bail, was subsequently charged with seven felonies, including being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of an assault weapon and possession of a destructive device or explosive without a permit.

The criminal complaint alleges that Rowan illegally possessed a Pietta .44 black powder revolver, a non-serialized .33 black powder revolver, a .22 LR Explorer II pistol, as well as the unspecified explosive materials. The complaint also references a 1990 conviction out of Placer County for carrying a concealed weapon.

He was due in court Thursday morning for a felony settlement conference, which was scheduled to take place about 30 minutes after deputies received word of the shooting.

Just before 11 a.m. Thursday, a fire began at the La Quinta home where the shooting occurred, but it was unclear if the blaze had any connection to the ongoing investigation. The fire, which led authorities to briefly evacuate neighboring homes, was quickly contained by Riverside County firefighters. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined, but sheriff’s Deputy Armando Munoz said fire investigators have ruled out arson.