Two-time Baja 1000 winner B.J. Baldwin and his girlfriend are cooperating with police after a deadly gun battle on April 22 in Baldwin’s home town of Las Vegas.
The incident took place at around 2:00 am in the parking lot of an In-N-Out Burger restaurant, when two men reportedly approached the couple while they were having dinner in their vehicle. A heated argument preceded a gunfight between the two parties, leaving one of the assailants dead at the scene.
A social media star with a huge online following, Baldwin drives the Baldwin Motorsports No.97 Monster Energy/Toyo Tire Toyota Trophy Truck in major desert events. He is also a well-known gun enthusiast and vocal advocate for America’s Second Amendment rights.
According to Las Vegas CBS Channel 8: “The shooting happened near the In-N-Out Burger at Tropicana and Fort Apache. According to the release from Baldwin Motorsports, Baldwin had just finished a late-night dinner in the parking lot with his girlfriend around 2 a.m. on Wednesday. That’s when two men came up to them. One of them had a gun and started shooting.
“As Baldwin and his girlfriend took cover, Baldwin returned fire, hitting the suspect. Baldwin has a valid concealed weapons permit.
“The other man then ran away. Police say Baldwin and his girlfriend left the scene, then called police to report the shooting. Police say a woman who had a relationship with the deceased man came to the scene and took his gun.”
Channel 8 also aired a press conference by Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Homicide Lieutenant Ray Spencer about the attack that included additional information:
“Around 2 a.m. this morning we received multiple calls of several shots that were fired in the parking lot directly behind me. Officers arrived and they found a black male in his early 40s deceased from a gunshot wound in the parking lot. From our preliminary investigation we had learned that the other party involved after leaving the shooting immediately reached out and contacted police to let us know he was involved in a shooting.
“This is what we have learned. Earlier in the evening there were two black males were seen walking through the apartment complex directly adjacent to the business behind me. Once they walked across the street, they encountered a male and female who were having dinner in the parking lot of this business behind me. They were near the trunk of their vehicle. At some point there was an altercation between the two black males and the male and the female that were having dinner in the parking lot.
“At some point, gunfire was exchanged between the deceased male and the male that was having dinner in the parking lot. At this point we do know there were more than 15 rounds that were exchanged in the parking lot, and there is a distinct separation between the cartridge casings where the deceased was and where the other shooter was. Again, at this point we don’t know what led up to the shooting.”
Baldwin Motorsports has issued a press release in response to the encounter, stating that Las Vegas police say Baldwin “acted in self-defense” and that the seven-time desert champion “is continuing to cooperate with the Las Vegas Metro Police Department and the District Attorney’s office.”