PHOENIX - Phoenix police have arrested suspect involved in a Christmas Day murder that left an 18-year-old boy dead.
The victim, 18-year-old Tyler Cardiel, was shot and killed while walking home from work.
Police said Jan. 8 that 30-year-old Timothy Bell has been arrested based on DNA evidence recovered from the crime scene. He now faces a murder charge.
Tyler's mother, Monique Cardiel, says she did not want him to work on Christmas Eve, but she never expected to find out he would be murdered.
He comforted his mother before heading to the Circle K gas station near north 83rd Avenue and Camelback Road. He had to work an overnight shift and was saving up for his own truck.
"I just hugged him and told him I loved him and be safe. He said okay and he walked out the door and he normally doesn't hug me goodbye," said Monique.
That would be the last time she saw her son alive.
"I'm so grateful for that hug."
Early Christmas morning, Phoenix Police found Tyler, who was shot to death. They say the suspect confronted Tyler during his walk home.
Ssurveillance video showed the suspect, who was seen wearing a purple hoodie walking into the Circle K.
Murder suspect seen on surveillance video at the Circle K store near 83rd Ave. and Camelback Rd. on Dec. 25, 2020. (Phoenix Police Dept.)
"It hurts more now that I've seen an actual face of somebody that is the suspect. I feel like a lot more pain than I did these past few days because now it's real, but it also brings a little bit of hope because there's a suspect," said Monique.
Monique describes her son as a hard working young man who usually stayed home and planned to go to college. His goals and dreams were taken away. She has a message for the suspected killer.
"I don't know what my son did to you that was so wrong to make you feel like you had to do this to him.. but please just find a way in your heart to just come forward please."