- Associated Press - Thursday, October 20, 2016

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Mental illness may be a defense for a man accused of killing a woman and wounding her husband in a car-to-car shooting in one of at least three vehicles that police said were struck by bullets last weekend on a Las Vegas freeway, his attorney said Thursday.

Kenneth McDonald’s appointed lawyer, Scott Coffee, said he’s still reviewing police reports about the Saturday morning gunfire on Interstate 15 near the Las Vegas Strip that authorities say killed Tracey Donahue, 48, of North Las Vegas, and wounded her husband, Thomas Donahue.

Police say at least three vehicles were struck by bullet.

“There’s a number of things that raise concerns about mental illness,” Coffee said. He declined to provide specifics.

McDonald was arrested a few minutes after the shooting at a pharmacy on Las Vegas Boulevard south of the Strip, where police allege he wielded two guns, pulled down his pants and demanded a sex act from a female employee.

McDonald made an initial court appearance Wednesday on felony murder, attempted murder, weapon, assault, sex assault and stolen property charges. He wasn’t asked to enter a plea, pending a preliminary hearing or an indictment. He’s due back in court Monday.

Prosecutor Michelle Fleck declined to comment.

Police found a BB gun and an empty 9mm handgun with a magazine that could hold 17 bullets in the pharmacy trash can, according to an arrest report.

The report said police also found 17 bullet casings in a white and silver Mercury Marquis with a broken headlight that witnesses said McDonald drove to the pharmacy. Police discovered bullet markings suggesting shots were fired from the driver’s position out the passenger side windows.

McDonald wasn’t coherent when he was taken to a hospital for treatment of minor dog bites received from a police K-9, police said. He allegedly made references in a later police interview to the video game series “Grand Theft Auto,” which features scenes in Las Vegas.

Coffee said he was investigating that report.

Police said road rage didn’t appear to have been the motive for the shots that peppered the Donahues’ 2009 Ford Crown Victoria, a tractor-tanker rig and a Kia SUV on I-15 near the Las Vegas Strip. The drivers of the truck and Kia weren’t injured, and the tanker wasn’t punctured.

Thomas Donahue’s daughter, Amber Garcia, told reporters that she believes their car drew gunfire because it looked like a police cruiser. The account is also posted on a GoFundMe site seeking donations to a memorial account.

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