LOS ANGELES – A rookie Los Angeles police officer being sought in connection with a fatal shooting fled to El Paso, Texas, with the help of his father, according to a federal arrest warrant issued Thursday. [View the federal extradition warrant here.]
Henry Solis, who was fired Tuesday from the LAPD, remains at large. He is suspected of pursuing and gunning down Salome Rodriguez Jr., 23, after getting into a fight with the victim in downtown Pomona on Friday, March 13.
According to an affidavit filed in support of a federal arrest warrant, investigators learned from family members, friends and witnesses that after the shooting, “Solis made incriminating statements about his role in the murder of Rodriguez and stated that he would never be seen again.”
“That same day, defendant Solis is known to have called his father’s (Victor Solis) home in Lancaster, California. Shortly after these phone calls, Victor Solis left his Lancaster home in a hurry,” the affidavit states.
On Saturday, March 14, Victor Solis, his pickup truck and dog were seen in El Paso at the home of family members; Victor Solis was interviewed that day by El Paso FBI agents, according to the federal document.
“Victor Solis advised the agents that he drove his son, defendant Solis, to El Paso on Friday, March 13, 2015, and dropped him off at a bus station, but he does not know where defendant Solis is,” the affidavit states.
A local arrest warrant for Henry Solis was issued Monday.
Before announcing Henry Solis’ firing, Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck urged the fugitive to surrender, saying he has “dishonored” the department.
“The mere fact that he is not cooperating with the Pomona Police Department and he has not shown up for work is sufficient to terminate,” Beck said.
Henry Solis was hired last June and has been out in the field in the San Fernando Valley’s Devonshire Division since November. He was in the Marine Corps before joining the police department.
Looking at his background, there are “no obvious indications that he had a propensity for this,” Beck said.
Rodriguez was gunned down near Third and Main streets in Pomona around 3:30 a.m. Friday following a fistfight at a nearby bar. He died at a hospital.
On Sunday afternoon, police recovered Henry Solis’ Volkswagen Jetta near the intersection of Main Street and Monterey Avenue, about four blocks from the shooting scene.
UPDATED 3/20/15: A reward of up to $25,000 was announced today for information leading directly to the arrest of Henry Solis, the 27-year-old rookie police officer wanted for fatally shooting a man in Pomona.
View the FBI’s wanted poster that mentions the reward here. Authorities have not announced the status of Lancaster resident Victor Solis, who allegedly admitted to driving his son to El Paso,Texas, shortly after the killing.