Video from L.A. Tan robbery released

Photo: Gary Amaya

December 15, 2010 4:47:47 AM PST
Police released surveillance video of an attempted robbery at a south suburban tanning salon that ended with the gunman shot dead by a customer.

Authorities are still investigating whether the gunman is the same man behind a deadly shooting spree.

It all happened in less than eight minutes. Gary Amaya,48, walked into L.A. Tan in Orland Park and pulled out a 38-caliber handgun. A clerk offered money, but he told her no. As Amaya pulled rope from a pocket, a customer entered and was immediately ordered behind the counter. Seconds later, Amaya fumbled with the rope and Jason McDaniel charged the 330-pound man, grabbed the gun and fired.

"He wasn't there for money, I don't think, and that's what scared me, because he had no feeling or emotion when I told him I had a little baby at home, " McDaniel told ABC 7.

Police found Amaya's Cheyenne pick-up stashed five blocks away. They were immediately struck by its similarity to the vehicle driven by the "honeybee" killer, a man who killed one and shot two others along the Illinois-Indiana border in October.

Inside Amaya's truck, Orland Park police found a purse belonging to a prostitute, rope and a pair of handcuffs. The prostitute told detectives Amaya tried to cuff her during a sex act and even shot at her hours before he went to the tanning salon.

The Will County Sheriff's office is still not confirming published reports that Amaya's gun is the same one used in the state line shootings. But relatives of the police officer errantly charged with that crime are reacting to reports Amaya may be the honeybee killer.

"This guy put everyone through hell," Officer Brian Dorian's brother Lance told ABC7. "I think it's the victims' families people should be thinking about."

Amaya's DNA is being run through law enforcement computers to see if the reclusive man from the small, central Illinois town of Rankin can be connected to any other crimes.

"I was flabbergasted. I never knew we had anybody in town. Like I said, I never seen the man. I heard the helicopter and heard sirens," said Rankin resident Maggie Diskin.


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