Former Tucson officer Ryan Remington facing manslaughter charge for shooting armed suspect nine times

(Tucson Police Department)
Published: Aug. 25, 2022 at 10:26 AM MST|Updated: Aug. 25, 2022 at 3:26 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The former Tucson police officer who fatally shot an armed suspect in a mobility scooter last year has been indicted on a manslaughter charge.

Mike Storie, attorney for Ryan Remington, confirmed his client was charged.

Pima County Attorney Laura Conover hosted a 3 p.m. news conference Thursday, Aug. 25, to make the announcement. Conover said Remington was served on Thursday and will have an arraignment next week.

“There is no joy in this announcement today. No joy,” Conover said. “I cannot turn back the hands of time. Not for Mr. Richards and not for Mr. Remington and his colleagues. But we have an absolute obligation to seek justice for the citizens of Pima County. Rest assured that when challenging events occur that require our consideration, we will go quietly and steadily about our work, and we will do what we believe is right.”

Remington, a four-year veteran of the TPD, was off-duty working as a security guard at the Walmart near Midvale Park and West Valencia Road on Nov. 29, 2021.

A Walmart employee told Remington that 61-year-old Richard Lee Richards stole a toolbox from the store.

The employee and Remington followed Richards as he left and asked for a receipt. Richards responded, “Here’s your receipt,” pulled out a knife and kept moving.

The employee said Richards then said, “if you want me to put down the knife, you’re going to have to shoot me.”

Another officer, Stephanie Taylor, arrived just as Richards reached the garden center of a nearby Lowe’s Home Improvement store.

Remington ordered Richards to stay away from the store entrance but Richards ignored him. Remington then shot Richards nine times, causing him to fall out of his scooter. Richards died at the scene.

Attorneys for Richards’ family said they will now file a civil suit against Remington.

“Now that Mr. Remington has been indicted, Mr. Richards’s family will proceed with a civil rights lawsuit against Mr. Remington in the next few weeks,” said John Bradley of Strang Bradley, LLC. “A civil lawsuit is an important part of seeking justice for Mr. Richards and his family, too.”

TPD Chief Chad Kasmar, who was not the chief when the shooting happened, called it a tragedy.

“This tragedy greatly impacted the Tucson community and this department,” Kamar said Thursday. “Today, we received notice that Ryan Remington has been indicted by a grand jury and faces criminal charges. This is now a matter for the courts to adjudicate. I’ll be referring any further questions to the Pima County Attorney’s Office.”

Remington was suspended after the shooting and was terminated Jan. 5.

KOLD’s Valerie Cavazos has been following the case for months. In July, she talked with the PCAO about why the case was taking so long.

Graphic Video From Incident

Below is an edited version of the video of the fatal shooting. KOLD has chosen not to show the whole video due to its graphic nature.

Responses To Indictment

Suspect’s Past

Richard Lee Richards was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer in Tucson on Monday,...
Richard Lee Richards was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer in Tucson on Monday, Nov. 29.(Arizona Department of Corrections)

According to the Arizona Department of Corrections, Richards has a long violent criminal history.

In 1981, he was found guilty of burglary and sentenced to seven years in prison.

In 1986, he was convicted of armed robbery and was sentenced to 15 years.

In 2007, he was convicted of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault and resisting arrest. He was released in January 2018.

In early 2020, Richards was sentenced in federal court on a charge of “transporting illegal aliens for profit.”

In November 2020, his probation was revoked and he was sentenced to five months in prison. He was set to start serving that sentence in April 2021.

According to a 2021 sentencing memo, Richards had a hip replacement while in prison and it “did not heal properly.” His attorney at the time, Brick P. Storts III, said that is why he was in a wheelchair.

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