Gunman arrested in Mesa, Ariz., shootings that left 1 dead, 5 wounded – Los Angeles Times

Posted: Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The gunman who cut a bloody swath through a Phoenix suburb  Wednesday morning, shooting six people in Mesa, Ariz., has been arrested, city officials announced.

Police did not identify the suspect, but an Arizona law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation told the Los Angeles Times the man was 41-year-old Ryan Giroux.

The official requested anonymity because he or she was not authorized to discuss the case. Giroux has a lengthy criminal history that includes convictions for assault in Arizona and Los Angeles County, court records show.

Det. Esteban Flores, a city police spokesman, told reporters that the suspect was found in a vacant condo. He was captured after officers used a stun gun.

Members of the Mesa Police Department SWAT team had been searching the complex and noticed the suspect standing on a balcony, Flores said.

It was not clear whether the suspect was armed at the time of his arrest, and Flores would not say whether the gun used in the shootings was recovered. 

“This really was a classic, textbook operation of putting your training into effect,” Mesa Acting Mayor Dennis Kavanaugh said.

Flores said police needed to conduct additional interviews with witnesses before publicly identifying the suspect.

The wave of violence that rocked Mesa began shortly before 9 a.m., when three people were shot after an argument in the Tri-City Inn on West Main Street, Flores told reporters during an earlier news briefing.

Police said the cause of the argument was unclear, but Flores said investigators believe the suspect knew the three people who were shot.

The suspect then raced outside and continued firing, wounding a student sitting in Bistro 13, a restaurant on the campus of the East Valley Institute of Technology across the street from the hotel. Seconds later, the man carjacked a gray Honda and fled the area, Flores said.

While police were responding to the first spate of shootings, emergency personnel received additional 911 calls informing them of shootings at a pair of apartment complexes in another part of the city. The suspect apparently tried to break into two apartments and shot male victims at both locations, Flores said.

In total, one person has died and five were seriously wounded, Flores said. One man was pronounced dead at the scene of the hotel shooting, Flores said, and two women there were injured but are expected to survive.

The victim of the shooting at the campus restaurant, identified only as an East Valley Institute of Technology student, is also expected to survive, Flores said. One of the men wounded in the apartment shootings was in critical condition Wednesday afternoon, Flores said, and the other is expected to survive.

Giroux has been incarcerated more than once in Maricopa County for burglary, theft, a drug offense and attempted aggravated assault, according to state correctional records.

Giroux was sentenced to three years in prison for burglary and theft convictions in 1993, and he spent an additional seven years in prison after he was convicted of attempted assault in 2006.

He was last released from prison in October of 2013, records show.

Giroux was also arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon twice in Los Angeles County. He was convicted in one case in 2000 and another in 2006, according to court records, though it is not clear how long he was incarcerated in California.

Flores did not identify the man who was killed in the hotel shooting. A motive in the attacks remains unclear.

SWAT teams from Tempe, Gilbert, and Scottsdale were all involved in the search, Interim Mesa Police Chief John Meza said. 

U.S. Sen. John McCain (R- Ariz.) offered his condolences to the victims of Wednesday’s shooting rampage and praised the quick response by local law enforcement.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and families impacted by the tragedy in Mesa today,” he said in the statement. “Our deepest thanks are with the Valley police and first responders who assisted the victims and tracked down the perpetrator to bring this dangerous situation to an end.”

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Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times


3:16 p.m.: This article was updated with a source confirming the gunman’s identity as Ryan Giroux.

2:26 p.m.: This article was updated with additional information about the capture of the suspected gunman.

1:29 p.m.: This article was updated to add the arrest of the suspected gunman.

12:32 p.m.: This article was updated with information from a police news conference.

The first version of this article was published at 11:14 a.m.


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