Chandler Mall Shooting: Suspect Did Time With Accidentally Released Inmate Daniel Perez
The man who surrendered to police after a shootout at the Chandler Fashion Center yesterday was not Daniel Perez, a fugitive accused of shooting at a Department of Safety Officer last month who was accidentally released from custody in Pinal County days later. But the two men may know each other -- they did time together in a Tucson prison in 2009.
Records show Adam Hernandez, 27, served time at the prison for aggravated assault and was released in 2009. Also a guest of the state at that same prison during that time was Perez.
It's unclear whether the two knew each other, but 12News is reporting that they did.
In fact, the reason authorities were tracking Hernandez was because he was driving a car known to be driven by Perez -- a stolen Kia SUV.
According to court documents obtained by New Times, the SUV was under surveillance by federal authorities when they saw Hernandez hop in and go for a spin.
The marshals tailed Hernandez as he drove to several businesses and exhibited "suspicious behavior."
Authorities followed him to the mall where he got out of the vehicle and entered the building -- at this point, court records show, Hernandez knew he was being followed (cops suspect he saw a police helicopter overhead that was responding to an unrelated armed robbery in the area).
Hernandez exited the mall through a separate entrance -- police following -- and got into a brief gunfight with officers in a different parking lot.
Hernandez got away again, and later told officers he planned to hail a cab and get out of there. He was concerned by the mounting police presence at the mall and thought he wouldn't be able to get away, so he ran across the street to a Baja Fresh restaurant and took hostages.
Hernandez surrendered peacefully, and nobody was injured in either incident.
For now, he's been charged with two counts of attempted murder of a police officer, and one count of auto theft. He's being held without bond.
Perez, meanwhile, remains on the loose.
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