(KRON) — The man accused of murdering two people outside a San Leandro gym in September has also been charged with firing shots at a crowded Oakland restaurant weeks before the murders, Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price said Tuesday.
On Sept. 3, Joshua Ballard, 23, got into a fight with two customers at an In-N-Out burger, Price said. He then pulled out a gun and reportedly fired two rounds into the crowded eatery.
One bullet hit an innocent bystander in the ankle, Price said. Ballard fled the scene, and an unregistered “ghost gun” was found at the restaurant by police.
Ballard is also facing charges for two murders he allegedly committed in the parking lot outside of 24-Hour Fitness Bayfair in San Leandro.
The first murder was reported by police to have happened on Sept. 14, and the second murder was on Sept. 24. In both cases, police found a man dead in a vehicle outside the gym’s parking lot with a gunshot wound to the head. Price said the victims were killed while Ballard carjacked them.
“There are too many guns in Alameda County and too easy access to guns,” said DA Price. “My office is committed to reducing the easy access to guns, particularly ghost guns, and working with young people to prevent the kind of reckless disregard for life that we see in this case. This case of deadly violence traumatizes our whole community and will not be tolerated.”
Ballard was arrested on Oct. 17 in the area of Hesperian Boulevard and Halcyon Drive in San Leandro. He was armed with a semiautomatic handgun at the time of his arrest.
For the In-N-Out shooting, Ballard was charged with three counts of assault with a semiautomatic firearm, along with discharge of a firearm with gross negligence and carrying a loaded firearm in a city. For the homicides, he faces two counts of murder, carjacking and second-degree robbery charges.