A man suspected of ambushing and fatally shooting a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy at a traffic light over the weekend has been arrested, local authorities said on Monday.
A reward of $250,000 was offered on Sunday for information about the shooting of Ryan Clinkunbroomer, 30, as he sat in his patrol car just outside a sheriff’s station in the city of Palmdale, about 55 miles northeast of Los Angeles.
After the reward was announced, community members came forward with information that allowed detectives to identify the suspect, 29-year-old Palmdale resident Kevin Salazar, Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said at a news conference on Monday.
Special enforcement deputies deployed chemical agents to force Salazar out of his house early Monday morning, after an hours-long standoff during which hostage negotiators also tried to coax him out, according to Luna.
The motive for the shooting was not yet known and investigators were still working the case, Luna said.
The sheriff’s office was “extremely confident” that Salazar was the culprit, he said, but added that it was still important for people to come forward with any further information about the crime.
“We have to get this individual prosecuted now, to the full extent of the law, and we need the public’s continued help and support in doing that,” he said.
A passerby found Clinkunbroomer at the wheel of his patrol cruiser gravely wounded about 6 p.m. on Saturday and called for help, police said. Clinkunbroomer, who served for eight years on the force, died at a hospital.
Clinkunbroomer, who had just gotten engaged to be married, was a third-generation member of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, Luna said in a post on Instagram.
“Service was running through his veins,” the post said.
This year, 83 ambush-style attacks have targeted police in the United States, resulting in 15 officers killed by gunfire, according to the National Fraternal Order of Police.