LAPD Rookie Wanted for Murder

Originally published on March 17, 2015, at NationofChange.org

The Pomona Police Department issued an arrest warrant for murder on Monday for an LAPD rookie officer on the run. Initially considered a person of interest, law enforcement officials now believe LAPD Officer Henry Solis knows he is wanted for murder and is considered armed and dangerous. Although police have found Solis’ car, the probationary officer has been missing since Friday.

According to the Pomona Police Department, officers responded to a homicide reported at 3:30am on Friday at Third and Main streets. While off-duty, LAPD rookie officer Henry Solis had been drinking at the Viva Tequila Lounge and Nightclub in downtown Pomona. After leaving the club, Solis allegedly got into a physical altercation with Salome Rodriguez, Jr.

Solis pulled out a gun and reportedly shot Rodriguez twice in the abdomen, twice in the left leg, and once in the neck. Rodriguez was able to run for about a block before collapsing in a nearby parking lot. An ambulance transported Rodriguez to the USC Medical Center where he later died from his wounds.

After Solis failed to appear at work on Saturday, law enforcement officials began considering him a person of interest in the homicide investigation. At 12:55pm on Sunday, the Pomona Police Department found Solis’ 2013 Volkswagen Jetta approximately 3 to 4 blocks from where the shooting had occurred. Both the LAPD and Solis’ family are reportedly cooperating with the Pomona Police Department’s investigation.

On Monday, the Pomona Police Department issued an arrest warrant for murder for Officer Solis. In a press release, the police stated, “Suspect Solis is a police officer and should be considered armed and dangerous. The suspect knows he is wanted, and that the police are actively searching for him. It is a felony for any person to harbor, conceal, or aid a fugitive in any effort to avoid or escape arrest.”

The victim’s family has stated that Rodriguez never met Officer Solis before the night of the shooting. Rodriguez had been a warehouse worker who had gone out with his coworkers on Thursday evening to downtown Pomona. His family has set up a GoFundMe fundraising page to cover Rodriguez’s funeral expenses.

Solis’ whereabouts remain unknown. The police believe Solis might be driving a brown 1992 Ford pick-up truck with California license plate 4J79703.

In a separate incident around 6:30pm on Saturday, another LAPD officer was arrested attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border while smuggling an illegal alien in the trunk of his car. LAPD officer Carlos Curiel Quezada, Jr. allegedly attempted to smuggle Atanasio Perez-Avalos into the United States by concealing him in the spare-tire area of his 2014 Nissan Juke. U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents discovered the Mexican national after using an x-ray device on the vehicle and arrested them.

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