SAN JOSE -- A 36-year-old man found shot to death in an East San Jose driveway Thursday has been identified but the circumstances of the attack remain elusive, police said.

Juan Rios Sanchez, whom authorities described as a transient living in San Jose, was discovered in front of a home at the corner of South 33rd and East San Antonio streets early Thursday morning. He was suffering from at least one gunshot wound to the abdomen, and paramedics tried to revive him, but he died on scene.

Police said no suspects or motives have been identified in the shooting.

"They're still seeking witnesses," said Sgt. Heather Randol, a police spokeswoman.

It marked the city's first homicide of the year. There were 44 homicides in 2013, 46 in 2012 and 42 in 2011, marking the first three-year streak topping 40 homicides in two decades.

Sources said Sanchez was found wearing an ankle bracelet typically issued to probationers and parolees. Detectives were exploring the possibility of gang motives in the killing but have not classified it as gang-related.

Residents in the area reported hearing gunshots around 12:30 a.m. Thursday, but no one called 911. Police and paramedics were called about an hour later after a woman returning home from work found the man in her driveway.

It was a troubling revelation to both neighbors and police.


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"We want to be able to respond and figure out what's happening. The sooner, the better," Randol said. "Our number one priority is answering 911 calls for service."

She acknowledged that safety concerns -- particularly in neighborhoods known for gang activity -- might deter some from contacting authorities, but that police do not need names to respond to a call.

"They can remain anonymous," Randol said. "Above all, it's important for us to have that information.

Anyone with information about Thursday's killing can contact the San Jose Police Department's homicide unit at 408-277-5283 or leave a tip with Silicon Valley Crime Stoppers at 408-947-STOP (7867) or with svcrimestoppers.org.

Contact Robert Salonga at 408-920-5002. Follow him at Twitter.com/robertsalonga.