The man accused of shooting an Arizona Department of Public Safety officer Oct. 8 has pleaded not guilty.
Ramon Bueno, 39, made the plea Monday morning, according to court officials.
A long and exhaustive manhunt that involved gangs, guns and drugs eventually led Phoenix police to the arrests of suspected shooting Bueno and Danny Vargas, 26.
"Our basic strategy was constant police pressure on the suspects until they were brought into custody," Phoenix Police Chief Daniel Garcia said during a news conference outlining some of the details surrounding the arrests. "We knew they would make a mistake and once they made a mistake we could arrest them."
Garcia called the arrests a culmination of a "relentless 24/7 hunt for the suspects."
Garcia said Bueno, a known gang member, has an extensive criminal history and is a suspect in a Sept. 20 homicide in which the victim was badly beaten and shot.
The wounded DPS officer was identified as 44-year-old James Casey, a six-year-veteran with the agency.
DPS Deputy Director Lt. Col Dennis Young called Bueno and Vargas "desperate people who do desperate things and had nothing to lose."
Bueno was escorted from the Phoenix Police Department into a squad car to be taken to the Fourth Avenue Jail just after 6 a.m. Oct. 16.
Bueno walked by CBS 5 News reporter Allyson Blair and was asked if he was sorry for what he did. "I didn't do nothing,'" Bueno replied.
Bueno had abrasions to his head and claimed officers "tried to kill me."
He was booked on one count of attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer, two counts of aggravated assault on an officer, one count of assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of possession of a weapon by a prohibited person and two felony drug-related charges.
Police Sgt. Trent Crump said Vargas had been shot in the back and was undergoing treatment Thursday, but that he didn't appear to be in any pain during questioning Wednesday night.
The investigation involved several agencies. The Phoenix Police Department, as the lead agency, worked cooperatively with DPS, U.S. Marshals, ATF, FBI, several police departments and the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.
"This is another example of Arizona agencies pulling together," Young said, who added his agency received calls from law enforcement across the state offering to help.
DPS officers Reynaldo Cruz and Michael Ofano were assisting Casey when he was shot and returned fire on the car containing Bueno, Vargas and three women.
Garcia said he didn't think the DPS officers were aware of Bueno and the fact he was a suspect in a homicide when the traffic stop was made.
Police had been looking for Bueno and Vargas since the shooting.
The two men were arrested about 7 p.m. Oct. 15 near 43rd Avenue and Orangewood and were seen being escorted into police headquarters in downtown Phoenix.
Police believe there were five people in the car at the time of the shooting.
Valeria S. Jaime, 24, was arrested on suspicion of hindering prosecution, a felony, and booked into jail, Holmes said.
Lori Latrece Richardson was detained, questioned and then released by investigators.
Vanessa Martinez, 29, was also released after officers found no cause to arrest her in the shooting of the unidentified officer.
According to the police report, Jaime was with her boyfriend, Bueno, 39, when he allegedly shot the officer in the face with a .357-caliber revolver.
Crump said one of the women questioned said Bueno put a gun to the back of the driver's head and ordered her to drive past the officers after they were caught in a dead end fleeing the hotel. They turned back around and that is when Bueno fired on the officers a second time.
Police interviewed Jaime days after the shooting and she told them she had not had contact with her boyfriend since the shooting.
A witness told police she had met with Jaime and Bueno at the Jack in the Box restaurant in the 3500 block of West Buckeye Road about 11 a.m. after the shooting.
"Detectives determined this suspect's actions following the shooting of the DPS officer, and her statements at interview, were a furtive effort to mislead detectives and hinder the investigation," Holmes said.
Holmes said Jaime had an upper body injury caused by what investigators believed was a gunshot from the incident.
Casey spent five hours in surgery and was home with his family, Young said.
Casey is married and has been with the department for six years.
The car the five people were riding in, a dark blue 2008 Mercury Sable with dark, tinted windows and a Kansas license plate was found about 11 a.m. the day of the shooting in the backyard of an abandoned home in the area of 29th Avenue and Pima.
"That abandoned home has some history with the Phoenix Police Department," Holmes said. "They didn't just pick this home and put the car in the backyard and say, 'this is going to be random.'"
Holmes said the DPS officer conducted a traffic stop at Knights Inn at southbound I-17 access road and McDowell. The officer identified three women in the vehicle.
He returned to his vehicle, and two officers arrived for backup. All three approached the vehicle when the officer was shot, and the officers fired back.
As the officers were aiding the injured officer, the suspect vehicle came from behind the motel and the suspects began firing on the officers again. The two DPS officers returned fire, and the suspects fled.
Neither of the backup officers was hurt, Case said.
The vehicle description was being broadcast through the state's regional Blue Alert system over electronic boards on the Valley's freeways. It is the first time the Blue Alert system, intended to alert the public to assaults on officers, has been utilized in Arizona.
Stay with cbs5az.com and CBS 5 News as this story develops.
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