Richard Lee Richards, 61, had been accused of stealing a toolbox from Walmart when an employee contacted an off-duty Tucson police officer who was working a special duty assignment at the store, according to a statement from Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus.
Ryan Remington, an officer for four years in Tucson, joined the Walmart employee in the parking lot and followed Richards while “attempting to gain his cooperation,” the police chief said in a statement.
“According to the employee, he caught up with Mr. Richards outside as he fled the store and asked to see a receipt for the toolbox. Instead of providing the receipt, Mr. Richards brandished a knife and said, ‘Here’s your receipt.'”
One thing led to another, Richards started to head into a Lowe’s store, Remington tells him not to enter the store, Richards continues, Remington shoots Richards in the back 9 times, Richards falls out of his chair and Remington handcuffs the man.
Tucson Mayor Regina Romero released the following statement:
“The actions of the officer involved in last night’s deadly shooting are unconscionable and indefensible. The County Attorney’s Office has my full support as they proceed with their investigation. It is moments like this that test our resolve to ensure justice and accountability. We owe this to all Tucsonans. I ask our community to remain calm and be patient as investigations ensue.”