PD: Retaliation possible motive for fatal shooting; 2 arrested

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Michael Burton (left) and Eric Webb By Catherine Holland Michael Burton (left) and Eric Webb By Catherine Holland

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Police have made two arrests in the shooting death of a Scottsdale man, which investigators believe was retaliation for an earlier armed robbery.

The shooting happened at about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Scottsdale Springs apartments on Osborn Road east of Miller Road. According to police, Michael Gordin, 21, was walking with a woman to his apartment when they were confronted by two men, one of whom opened fire.

Gordin was hit several times and was pronounced dead at the scene. The suspects left the scene.

The woman escaped unharmed and was able to identify the alleged shooter as Michael Burton (left in the above image). She told police she did not know the other suspect.

Investigators later determined that Eric Webb was the man allegedly with Burton at the time of the shooting. Both were taken into custody without incident.

Throughout the course of the investigation, detectives learned that the victim, Gordin, had been implicated in an armed robbery in Surprise on Monday. A woman, later determined to be Burton’s wife, was kidnapped in the course of that incident.

"It was not a random crime that occurred," said Sgt. Bert Anzini of the Surprise Police Department.

Investigators said the woman was confronted by a man she knew as "Mike."

Based on their interviews, detectives believe Burton and Webb went to the Scottsdale Springs apartments specifically to confront Gordin in retaliation for the alleged carjacking.

When officers searched Gordin’s apartment, officers found evidence of drug activity, but they have not determined how, or even if, it played a role in the deadly shooting or perhaps the earlier armed robbery.

"In this particular circumstance, it is a possibility that drugs were involved," Anzini said.

Police say the investigation is ongoing.

Burton, 30, faces a charge of first-degree murder. Webb, 41, is charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

A judge set bond at $1 million for each man.