Tucson Police released the identity of a person of interest involved in the burglary incident prior to the shooting of Tucson Sgt. Robert Carpenter.
Carpenter, 46, was shot in the head early Sunday after he and several other officers responded to a residential burglary near Broadway and Alvernon. It was the second time that morning the alarm at the same residence went off.
It was after the first alarm, around 1:45 am, that officers made contact with the person of interest. According to police, Richard "Ricky" Mendoza, 29, is believed to be the suspect seen fleeing the home on East Elmwood Street.
Investigators say he was staying at the Randolph Park Hotel on Alvernon Way on Monday evening. The SWAT team and investigators responded to the hotel to locate and detain Mendoza. Police searched his hotel room and vehicles in the parking lot.
Mendoza was arrested for first and second degree burglary. The investigation regarding the shooting of Carpenter is still ongoing.
Tucson Police and 88-CRIME are offering a reward up to $26,000 for information leading to an arrest of the individual (s) responsible for the shooting.
The reward money is a result of contributions by 88-CRIME, the Arizona Attorney General's Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the United States Marshal's Service, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, and various private citizens who wish to remain anonymous.
Tucson Sgt. Maria Hawke said, "The Tucson Police Department is extremely appreciative of the outpouring of support from the community as well as other law enforcement entities in the minutes, hours, and days since the critical shooting of Sergeant Robert Carpenter."
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