Gunman's stolen car found

UPDATE: THE car used as a getaway in a shooting at Nobby on Sunday has been found along Ted Mengel Rd, west of the township.

Clifton Police confirmed this morning the car had been found in bushland at about 10am yesterday.

The find follows the shooting on Sunday afternoon of 45 year old Clifton businessman Gino Gomez, who was at the Nobby General Store buying fuel at 3.45pm.

While he was in the store, a masked offender entered armed with a sawn-off rifle with the apparent intent of robbing the store.

He shot Mr Gomez in the leg before fleeing and driving off in his vehicle.

 The Holden Statesman sedan has been towed to the Warwick police holding yard, where police from the scientific section in Brisbane will perform a thorough examination of the vehicle.

Mr Gomez remains in a stable condition in hospital in Brisbane after undergoing surgery yesterday morning, with the gunman now the subject of a major police manhunt.

Police believe the car had been dumped in bushland within minutes of the botched robbery.

Warwick Criminal Investigation Branch officer-in-charge Detective Sergeant Darren Tamblyn has said there was evidence that another car, possibly a 4WD, had met the gunman at the scene.

The offender is described as about 180cm tall, around 35 to 40 years of age, with brown skin and of Mediterranean or Italian descent.

Once voted Queensland's second safest place to live, the town of Clifton is still reeling following the shooting.

O'Shanley's Irish Bar owner Kathleen O'Shanley said the Clifton community was still in disbelief.

"Everyone sort of looks after everyone else here," she said.

"We still don't know why it happened and whether it was a robbery or whether he was just trying to get away.

"You just don't expect it nine kilometres up the road at a wee shop."

Mrs O'Shanley said the incident had especially shocked those who had come to rely on the security of the community.

"Clifton was voted second safest in a state-wide (survey) they were doing about four years ago and then somebody goes and shoots someone," she said.

"I think that will fire us at the bottom of the list now.

"It's a shame because I know of two couples who moved here because of the results of the survey and Clifton's low crime rate."

Mr Gomez's mother-in-law Josephine Gilroy was yesterday still coming to grips with the attack.

She said her son-in-law had simply gone into Nobby to fuel up and to "get some bits and pieces".

"We don't have petrol any more here in Clifton on Sundays and so he went to do that," she said.

"I guess he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"Most people here look out for each other – we don't feel that intimidated.

"We're just in shock that it's happened and we've got to thank our lucky stars it was his leg shot and nothing else."

Mrs Gilroy said there had been a flood of local support from the community and said Mr Gomez's wife Lana was doing well.

The family now hope police find the male offender, who was wearing a helmet and balaclava when he shot Mr Gomez.

"I just hope he's caught before he hurts anyone else," Mrs Gilroy said.

"There are a lot of desperate people out there and he obviously didn't have a car or a bike.

"He just seemed to come out of thin air."

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or Clifton Police on 4697 3120.




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