SALT LAKE CITY — The man charged with killing a Utah sheriff's deputy during a traffic stop was captured while sleeping in a shed Wednesday, three days after saying in a MySpace posting that he was feeling "crazy" and "ready for whatever is next."
Roberto Miramontes Roman, 37, was captured around 8 a.m. at a trailer park near Beaver, about 200 miles south of Salt Lake City, said Beaver County Sheriff Cameron Noel. Immigration officials say he is in the U.S. illegally and has been deported three times.
The subject of an intensive manhunt, Roman has been charged with capital murder and tampering with evidence in the Tuesday shooting of Millard County sheriff's deputy Josie Greathouse Fox. Millard County Deputy Attorney Patrick Finlinson said Wednesday he will seek the death penalty.
Roman was arrested with another suspect, Ruben Chavez, about 90 miles south of the shooting, which occurred about 1 a.m. near the farming town of Delta in central Utah. Chavez has not been charged, and Finlinson said investigators aren't certain of his involvement in the case.
Deputies were tipped to the suspects' location by a 911 call, Noel said. An overnight search of the same trailer park - based on a report that Roman and Chavez had associates there - came up empty, he said.
Detectives found the men, then got a warrant to thoroughly search the shed, Noel said.
According to an e-mail from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Roman entered the country legally from Mexico in 1990. He was deported in 1998 after a criminal conviction in Utah and arrested twice when attempting to re-enter the country illegally in Arizona and California. Roman was convicted on federal immigration charges in Arizona and served time in a federal prison.
It's unclear when or how he returned. He has a court appearance set for Thursday.
In May, Roman set up a page on the social networking site MySpace that shows numerous pictures of him holding firearms. Among the weapons are two .45 caliber handguns and an AK-47 semiautomatic assault rifle. Roman, of Delta, posted his last entry there Sunday, characterizing his mood as "crazy" and saying he was "ready for whatever is next."
Millard County officials expressed relief at his capture.
"Now we can focus on the victim," sheriff's spokeswoman Lindsay Mitchell said. "It will give us some closure."
Greathouse Fox, a mother of two and a five-year veteran of the sheriff's department, was found dead from a gunshot wound on a rural highway shortly after 4th District Court papers say she stopped Roman in a Cadillac registered to Chavez.
Shortly before the shooting, another deputy saw two cars meet on a dirt road and radioed to Greathouse Fox to stop one of them. The other car was traced back to Greathouse Fox's brother, Ryan Greathouse, who told deputies he bought drugs from Roman and another man during the encounter.
The brother-sister connection was a bizarre coincidence, authorities said. The family is planning a funeral for Monday in Delta, Mitchell said.
Ryan Greathouse later gave police Roman's cell phone number and information about Roman's family that led to an unsuccessful search of a west Salt Lake City home hours after the shooting.
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A license plate from the Cadillac was removed and bolted to an orange Corvette, which police found outside the Salt Lake house, court papers say.