TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - It’s not often that a suspect is helping out the police solve a crime. Well it happened for investigators with the Oro Valley Police Department.
In November 2018, OVPD received a 911 call from the Walmart at Oracle and Tangerine. The report was that two men had gone inside and were allegedly shoplifting. Police say, one man had stuffed items in a backpack and the other in a shopping cart. The man pushing the shopping cart was identified as Christopher Tipsword. Both he and another man fled the scene.
While they were taking off in the car, Tipsword accidentally dialed 911. Police say, the dispatcher heard him say go, slam the door and then say go again. The dispatcher relayed that information to detectives.
Here’s how police connected Tipsword to the crime. They had a picture of him and compared it to video surveillance from Walmart and it was a match. Then they pinged his cell phone and it was at the Walmart at the time he called 911 at 2 am. Plus they had his cell phone number from the 911 call. Detectives tried to call him, but Tipsword would not answer.
The reason his phone wasn’t answered, OVPD found out, was that Tipsword had already been booked in the Pima County Jail on unrelated charges.
Police tell us, that without his phone call to 911. It would have taken longer to find Tipsword or they may have never found him.
Tipsword has been charged with shoplifting.