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Man Charged WIth Murder in Phoenix Officer's Death

Man Charged WIth Murder in Phoenix Officer's Death

In this Wednesday, May 26, 2010 photo courtesy of Phoenix Police Department, is Danny Ledezma Martinez, 30, arrested and charged with murder in the shooting death of Phoenix Police Officer Travis Murphy early on Wednesday in Phoenix. [AP]

Associated Press

May 28, 2010

PHOENIX — A Tucson man with previous theft and weapons convictions was charged Thursday with first-degree murder and weapons violations in the fatal shooting of a Phoenix police officer.

Danny Ledezma Martinez, 30, was also charged with burglary and fleeing from a police vehicle, Maricopa County Attorney Rick Romley said.

Prosecutors will decide whether to pursue the death penalty after reviewing the circumstances surrounding the slaying of Officer Travis Murphy on Wednesday.

Records show Martinez previously served more than four years of a five-year sentence for attempted sexual assault before being released in 2003.

He also spent more than three years in an Arizona prison on felony weapons misconduct charges in the Tucson area before being released in April 2009.

In addition, he pleaded guilty to drunken driving charges in October 2009 and theft in November 2003, records show.

“Unfortunately, our society, America’s, Arizona’s, there are those who have a life of crime,” Romley said. “For some reason they don’t learn their lesson when they go to the Department of Corrections.”

Martinez made an initial court appearance late Wednesday and was ordered held without bail. He did not enter a plea. A public defender likely will be assigned to represent him.

Murphy and his partner, Officer Jillian Mahlmeister, were the first to respond to a 1:30 a.m. call in which neighbors reported someone hit a parked car and was trying to hide a Ford Mustang in the carport of a vacant home.

The officers got out of their patrol vehicle and split up in search of a suspect.

Moments later, Murphy was hit with multiple gunshots apparently fired from an AR-15-type rifle, according to a court document filed Thursday.

Mahlmeister found her partner with wounds to the waist and legs. Another officer drove him to a nearby hospital, where he died in surgery.

A police tactical team found Martinez less than two hours later hiding in a backyard shed several houses away from the shooting scene. He was naked and resisted officers but was taken into custody after being struck by rubber bullets and bitten by a police dog.

A rifle was found hidden in another nearby shed. Tests showed it was the rifle used in the assault on Murphy, Police Chief Jack Harris said.

Investigators found 11 spent .223-caliber rifle casings at the scene of the shooting, as well as two spent rounds that Murphy apparently fired from his handgun, the court document said.

The crashed Ford Mustang was registered to a Tucson address listed on the driver’s license of Martinez, according to the court document.

At police headquarters on Thursday, Troy Campbell, Murphy’s brother-in-law, told KTVK-TV that the killing leaves his sister’s 2-year-old daughter and 2-week-old boy without a father.

“It’s a devastating thing,” Campbell said. “It’s horrible. There’s no replacing a father’s love.”


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  • Sfa_iv_max50

    revCCBeasley

    over 3 years ago

    2944 Comments

    Death.......Life for Life...

  • 21_max50

    philfroggy

    almost 4 years ago

    1564 Comments

    He needs the death penalty

  • Photo_user_banned_big

    navy_cop

    almost 4 years ago

    104 Comments

    Fry his ass, then he can burn in hell

  • Img_0970_max50

    CDTDAT

    almost 4 years ago

    312 Comments

    This POS needs to burn in hell!!! What a waste of air.

  • Scannedimage_sq90_max50

    Texlawman

    almost 4 years ago

    650 Comments

    Fry this POS, Rip Brother Murphy!

  • Picture_204_max50

    bklyn

    almost 4 years ago

    762 Comments

    Persue the death penalty. Obviously he did not learn from past crimes and visits to the pinta. This habitual offender should not see the light of day , but from six feet under.

  • N1023300020_30025442_7610_max50

    KAICHARESE

    almost 4 years ago

    2780 Comments

    i hope he gets what he deserves. praying for the officers family

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    rsironron

    almost 4 years ago

    5220 Comments

    I agree with Kaalima, Fry this POS.

  • Meangreen01_max50

    AZmeangreen

    almost 4 years ago

    2338 Comments

    Death penalty! This kind of ...person... doesn't need another chance to murder.

  • On_the_job_002_max50

    kaalima

    almost 4 years ago

    1748 Comments

    If this is not a death penalty case, then I don't know what is !!

  • On_the_job_002_max50

    kaalima

    almost 4 years ago

    1748 Comments

    RIP Officer Murphy. I pray that God's sweet comfort will be with the family.

  • Snapshot_of_me_1_max50

    CoyoteKY86

    almost 4 years ago

    88 Comments

    RIP Officer Murphy. Kids...look at this guy's mugshot in the article..this is what FAILURE looks like.

  • Img_20111016_163737_max50

    DDemlong

    almost 4 years ago

    2238 Comments

    RIP Murphey, Justice will be served.

  • In_remembrance_of_oakland_pd_max50_max50_max50_max50_max50

    rhood

    almost 4 years ago

    23592 Comments

    Seeking the death penality is a no brainer, it is time for this human garbage to go to the landfill.

  • Frank_at_work_max50

    gruntdeputy

    almost 4 years ago

    1022 Comments

    Good work in makeing an arrest so quicly, and without further loss.

    May God bles our brother and his family.

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