The man fatally shot while driving on the Niagara Thruway on Monday was likely followed by the shooter on the highway, State Police said.
The victim, 25-year-old Angel Marcial, was released from prison six months ago after serving nearly three years on charges of selling fentanyl-laced heroin and trying to bribe a police officer.
State police did not offer a motive for Marcial's shooting death, but they said they believe he was likely "targeted" and not a victim of road rage or random violence.
Authorities on Wednesday also said they want to question Juan Colon, 22, about the shooting and offered a reward for information on the crime.
Colon's last known address was on Rosedale Street in Buffalo's Riverside neighborhood, according to Crime Stoppers Buffalo.
Marcial was shot at about 6:15 p.m. Monday while driving on the Niagara Thruway near the Niagara Street exit.
Authorities also said they are looking for a white 2003 Toyota 4Runner with license plate HYM3229.
A reward of up to $2,500 is being offered for information leading to an arrest in the case. Crime Stoppers asks anyone with information to call 716-867-6161.
Marcial was sentenced in March 2015 to serve up to 3 ½ years in prison after he pleaded guilty to charges of criminal possession of a controlled substance, attempted bribery and burglary. Two years earlier in August 2013, the Erie County Sheriff's Office and Buffalo Police Department issued an urgent warning to heroin users after, they said, undercover officers bought heroin from Marcial which turned out to contain fentanyl, which can lead to overdoses.
Marcial was also arrested in January 2013 after he was pulled over for a traffic infraction and police found heroin in the center console, prosecutors said. During the stop, he offered $900 in cash to the officers if they would release him, officials said.
In addition, in June 2014, he was arrested for breaking into his girlfriend’s house, assaulting her and forcing her to spend the night with him. Prosecutors said she escaped after he fell asleep. He pleaded guilty to second-degree burglary for that incident.