LOS ANGELES COUNTY, Calif. — Authorities have detained a man suspected of shooting and killing Los Angeles County Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer, who was found unconscious in his marked patrol vehicle on Saturday evening.
Sheriff Robert Luna announced the arrest at a news conference Monday. He said it came after community members came forward with new information leading to the suspect’s arrest early Monday.
The suspect, identified as 29-year-old Kevin Salazar, surrendered following an hourslong standoff, Luna said. Video obtained by KABC-TV showed a man with his hands up as he was being detained in Palmdale early Monday.
“This is still a very fluid investigation,” Luna said. “There could be other arrests, but right now we believe that we have the murderer of our deputy in custody.”
Deputies said a good Samaritan found Clinkunbroomer in his patrol vehicle after the deputy was “ambushed while conducting routine patrol duties.” At the time of the incident, he was wearing his full uniform and alone, officials said.
Officials had offered a $250,000 reward for information in the shooting. They also shared images of a “vehicle of interest,” identified as a dark gray 2006-2012 Toyota Corolla, that was seen driving alongside Clinkunbroomer’s patrol vehicle.
Clinkunbroomer was a field training officer who had been with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department for eight years. Luna said that he was part of a line of law enforcement officers and that he had recently gotten engaged.
“He’s third-generation,” Luna said at a news conference. “His father served with us. His grandfather served with us. Service was running through his veins.”
In a statement read Monday by Luna, Clinkunbroomer’s family remembered him as “a dedicated, hardworking deputy sheriff who enjoyed working here at the Palmdale station.”
“He was proud to work along the side of his partners that he considered brothers and sisters as he sacrificed daily to better the community that he served,” the statement read. “Ryan made the ultimate sacrifice in doing so.”
Authorities said they believe that Clinkunbroomer was targeted because he was in his uniform. Officials continue to investigate.