PHOENIX — An ex-convict who engaged in a gunbattle with law enforcement on a Phoenix-area freeway was paroled from a Colorado prison in October after serving 4 ½ years of a roughly six-year sentence on various assault charges.

Colorado officials say Andrew J. Rael entered prison in April 2009 and was released on parole this fall after having earned credit while incarcerated.

He was granted permission to serve his parole in his native Arizona where authorities say he had been in full compliance with the guidelines of his supervised release.

Police suspect the 25-year-old Rael killed a tow-truck driver Sunday and a convenience store employee the next morning before opening fire with a rifle on Department of Public Safety officers on U.S. 60. He died in the shootout that snarled Monday morning traffic.