Oct. 17 (UPI) — A New Jersey teenager has been arrested for last week’s fatal shooting of a police officer at Philadelphia International Airport, but law enforcement are still on the hunt for at least two other suspects, authorities said.
Yobranny Martinez Fernandez, 18, was arrested early Monday in Cherry Hill, N.J., Philadelphia law enforcement told reporters during a Monday press conference.
The teenager is accused of being involved in the late Thursday shooting of officers Richard Mendez and Raul Ortiz at the Philadelphia airport.
The pair of law enforcement were working security at the airport when they confronted a group of at least four people breaking into vehicles in the parking garage.
A gunfight followed, resulting in Mendez being shot multiple times and Ortiz being short in the arm. Both officers were transported to the hospital where Mendez was pronounced dead. Ortiz was released on Saturday.
Authorities said the suspects fled the scene in a vehicle that was later seen dropping off a suspect, later identified as Jesus Hernan Madera Duran, at a local hospital where he was pronounced dead from a gunshot wound believed to have been sustained in the firefight.
Deputy Commissioner Frank Vanore told reporters during the press conference that over the weekend investigators developed probable cause that Fernandez of Camden, N.J., was involved in the shooting.
“We believe that individual participated in the theft of the vehicle and was subsequently involved in the shooting homicides of officer Ortiz, officer Mendez, as well as the individual that was with them, Jesus Duran,” he said.
Vanore added that they are searching for two other suspects, and that one of the three is responsible for wounding Ortiz and killing both Mendez and Duran.
“We believe that one of these accomplices was responsible for firing a firearm, which shot all three of these individuals,” Vanore said. “That’s what the evidence is showing us at this time.”
Vanore said Fernandez was arrested just before 4 a.m. Monday by members of the U.S. Marshals Service, FBI and New Jersey State Police after investigators received information about two hours earlier that the suspect was in Cherry Hill.
Photos published of the arrest online by the U.S. Marshals Service Philadelphia show that Fernandez was secured in Mendez’s handcuffs, which were marked with his badge number 5041.
Fernandez is currently in the custody of New Jersey State Police awaiting extradition to Philadelphia for charges of murder, Vanore said.
Vanore would not say what information they had that led them to Fernandez or where they had received it from, but said “they need more,” calling on the public to contact authorities if they know anything about the shooting.