Image: Calif. police officer examines tollbooth after shooting
Noah Berger  /  AP
A police officer examines a tollbooth at the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, where a toll collector was shot and killed Tuesday in Richmond, Calif.
updated 8/12/2009 2:50:16 PM ET 2009-08-12T18:50:16

A man suspected of fatally shooting his ex-girlfriend and another person at the entrance to a busy San Francisco Bay toll bridge was arrested early Wednesday after an overnight manhunt.

Nathaniel Burris, 46, of Richmond, Calif., was taken into custody after being spotted by two California Highway Patrol officers around 3:15 a.m. in Placer County, about 120 miles northeast of the shooting at the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge toll plaza.

Burris was sleeping in an airport shuttle van, but drove off after the officers approached him. He surrendered after a short chase and was later booked into the Placer County Jail on two counts of murder, CHP spokesman Sgt. Trent Cross said.

Cross said the shootings appeared to stem from a domestic dispute as Burris and Deborah Ross, 51, a California Department of Transportation toll booth collector, had recently broken up.

"He clearly had no regard for human life, so we wanted to apprehend him as soon as possible," Cross said. "We had authorities all throughout Northern California trying to find this guy."

Burris apparently opened fire with a shotgun shortly before 6 p.m. Tuesday, killing Ross and Ersie Charles Everette, 58, of San Leandro, Calif., who was sitting in his truck in the toll plaza parking lot.

'He was a likeable guy'
Ross and Burris had shared a house in Richmond, and neighbors said the two had been having financial problems. Richmond Police were called to the house on Saturday, police spokeswoman Sgt. Bisa French said Wednesday. It is unknown what the nature of the call was as no report was taken, French said.

Although their relationship had just ended, Burris was aware of Everette, who drove Ross to work Tuesday, Cross said.

"Somehow, he knew the guy was there at her job, there's a connection between the two victims, but what that relationship is, we don't know at this time," Cross said.

Everette, known as "Chuck" by those who knew him, was a longtime, well-respected bus driver for Golden Gate Transit who had received numerous accolades, spokeswoman Mary Currie said Wednesday.

Video: 2 killed "He was a likable guy, a good guy," Currie said. "Passengers liked him. His co-workers liked him."

Tuesday's shootings occurred at the bridge over the northern portion of San Francisco Bay that connects well-to-do Marin County with Richmond and other East Bay suburbs. Witnesses said a man used the butt of a shotgun to shatter the window of the No. 3 toll booth, then fired at least three times inside, stunning rush-hour commuters in the westbound lanes before fleeing in the van owned by Western Eagle Shuttle of San Rafael, Calif.

Officers found Ross' body inside the booth, while Everette was discovered slumped over in a white pickup in a nearby parking lot.

A woman who answered the phone at Western Eagle Shuttle offices' Wednesday morning said the company had no comment.

More on:Crime & courts

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