Father and Son Arrested Less Than 48 Hours Following Shooting
By Officer Tasia Martinez
APD Tactical Officers arrested David Candelaria Sr., 44, in South Valley Albuquerque Sunday following a lengthy overnight standoff. David was arrested in connection with the shooting death of an 8-year-old girl on Friday evening near the Alamosa Community Center, 6900 Gonzalez SW. David Candelaria’s son, 23-year-old David Candelaria Jr. was also arrested on Saturday night in connection to the same homicide.
David Candelaria Sr. is facing charges including an open count murder, conspiracy to commit a second degree felony, tampering with evidence, felon in possession of firearm, shooting at or from a motor vehicle resulting in death, and four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Detectives have identified him as the gunman in this tragic shooting.
David Candelaria Jr. is currently being held at the Metropolitan Detention Center on a $7500 cash or surety bond. He was also arrested on three outstanding misdemeanor warrants for a previous DWI.
The shooting of the 8-year-old girl occurred when the victim’s father, uncle and another male engaged in an altercation with the Candelarias who were accompanied by two other unidentified men outside of the community center on Friday evening. The altercation turned violent and detectives say that David Candelaria Sr. fired a gun at the group, shooting the little girl who was still seated in the vehicle. The child suffered a gunshot wound and was pronounced deceased at the hospital a short time later.
APD officers and detectives began an intense citywide search for the suspects, releasing surveillance images to the public and the media and investigating all possible leads. Homicide detectives conducted thorough investigation, working nonstop to identify and obtain arrest warrants for David Candelaria Sr. and Jr. APD Gang Unit detectives worked around the clock to assist homicide detectives in searching the city and using surveillance techniques to locate the suspects.
David Candelaria Sr. was traced to the South Valley residence and refused to exit as detectives tried to contact him from outside the home for nearly 10 hours. Tactical units were called to assist and spent approximately seven additional hours attempting to get Candelaria Sr. to exit peacefully, using audible public service announcements, phone calls, crisis negotiation techniques, and less lethal munitions such as flash bangs. Finally, SWAT Officers and a K-9 Officer searched the residence and located Candelaria hiding inside. He was apprehended by the K-9 and arrested.
Detectives are continuing their diligent and tireless work on this case and are still searching for the additional subjects seen in surveillance images on the night of the shooting. Detectives would like to interview those individuals as part of the ongoing criminal investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call 242-COPS or 843-STOP.