Police identify suspect in murder of good Samaritan

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Police say Manuel Salazar pistol-whipped a woman and killed her husband during a beer run. By Alicia Barron Police say Manuel Salazar pistol-whipped a woman and killed her husband during a beer run. By Alicia Barron
Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland
Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland
Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland
Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland Police are turning to the public to help them find the would-be robber who shot and a killed a man over a few cans of beer. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife. By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX – Police on Monday identified the suspect accused of shooting and killing a man over a few cans of beer late last week. It all happened right in front of the victim’s wife.

Investigators say the suspect is Manuel Salazar III. The 20-year-old has a police record and is a documented gang member, said Sgt. Trey Crump of the Phoenix Police Department. Investigators released Salazar's driver's license photo (above) to get his face out there, hoping that the public will be able to help them track him down.

Over the weekend, the Phoenix Police Department released less-clear surveillance photos of Salazar captured just minutes before the shooting.

“The arrogance that this suspect showed in this is chilling,” Crump said during a news conference Saturday.

Police said Salazar tried to steal two 30-packs of beer from the Circle K near 43rd Avenue and McDowell Road Friday night.

Lance Taylor, 23, tried the stop him. Taylor, along with his wife and mother, was visiting a friend who worked at the convenience store.

Taylor reportedly convinced Salazar to return the beer. After putting the alcohol back, however, police said Salazar pulled a gun and began threatening people.

Salazar reportedly attacked Taylor’s wife, hitting her in the head with the butt of the gun. Taylor stepped in to defend his wife and was shot in the stomach.

Taylor was rushed to St. Joseph’s Hospital where doctors pronounced him dead.

Police said the Salazar left the scene either on foot or in a brown two-door Chevy Malibu. He is described as a Hispanic male, 150 to 180 pounds with buzz-cut hair and a faint mustache. He was last seen wearing a black T-shirt, dark jeans and had earrings in both ears.

“We need to get his person off the street,” Crump said. “He shot and killed this good Samaritan … in cold blood.”

Police said Salazar is considered armed and very dangerous.

While investigators are following up on several leads, Salazar remains on the loose.

“We should all be worried about the rest of theses victims involved in this until we apprehend this guy," Crump said.

Silent Witness is offering a reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the suspect. If you have any information about Friday night’s deadly shooting, you’re urged to call 480-WITNESS or 480-TESTIGO.