PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Police arrested a suspect in connection to a shooting that left a woman dead at a west Phoenix business near 43rd Avenue and Thomas Road. It happened at about 1 a.m. Sunday.
Phoenix police say when officers arrived at the parking lot of Funny Farm Lounge, they found 20-year-old Gloria Zermeno on the ground in the parking lot. According to court documents, Zermeno had been shot in the head and was pronounced dead at the scene.
During their investigation, detectives learned that there was a fight in the parking lot earlier in the night, which included Zermeno. Investigators reviewed surveillance video and saw that a white car approached and slowed to a stop near the parking lot, close to where Zermeno was standing. Several shots are seen fired from the white car before the driver sped off. Zermeno was struck and fell to the ground, according to police.
Police records state that the fight stemmed from security escorting a man out from the club earlier in the night for not paying. Witnesses identified the man who was escorted out and said he was known to drive a white, 2011 Jaguar. The white vehicle seen leaving the scene of the shooting matched witnesses description of the car, and detectives determined probable cause to arrest 37-year-old Vincente Diaz-Vargas.
Diaz-Vargas was identified as a possible suspect through collected forensic evidence, witness testimony and surveillance videos. One of the witnesses reportedly identified Diaz-Vargas and claimed to see him, "armed with a black handgun, removing it from his holster, racking it, and making threats to everyone."
Officers found Diaz-Vargas and arrested him. During a search of his home, detectives found multiple hand guns and rifles. While being interviewed by detectives, Diaz-Vargas denied the allegations at first, but then admitted to firing off a handgun multiple times into the parking lot because he was upset. Diaz-Vargas faces first-degree murder charges.
"Having to provide this justice for the family this quickly is really gratifying for our detectives, and this is what they hope for in every single case," said Sgt. Mercedes Fortune. "To quickly find the person who is responsible and be able to bring some justice to that family."
A fundraising effort is underway to raise money for Zermeno's funeral cost.