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Suspect in gas station robbery, homicide arrested

The Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office said investigators received numerous tips as to the identity of the suspect.

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colorado — A suspect wanted in a gas station robbery and homicide in Centennial on Nov. 26 has been arrested, the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office (ACSO) said Friday.

The sheriff's office identified the suspect as 31-year-old Samuel Birch. ACSO said they received numerous tips as to the identity of the suspect after releasing surveillance pictures of the robbery.

When deputies responded to a Conoco gas station at 8263 S. Quebec St. in Centennial, they found the clerk, 24-year-old Mauricio Perez, lying on the floor behind the counter. 

Witnesses said they saw a man walking away from the shooting scene. 

According to ACSO, the Perez was able to speak with deputies and described the person as wearing a mask, but couldn't remember much else.  

Perez suffered a single gunshot wound to the stomach and was transported to the hospital where he later died while in surgery. 

The sheriff's office said they reviewed video that showed the suspect enter the store at about 4:30 p.m. and spoke to the victim before pointing a handgun at him and having him put cigarettes and money from the register in a bag. 

The suspect then shot the victim as he exited the store, said ACSO. 

Credit: Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office
Arapahoe Sheriff's Office still searching for a gas station robber and homicide suspect.

Investigators continue to follow up on leads and asked anyone with information about this robbery and homicide to call the ACSO tip line at 720-874-8477.

Anyone with information about metro Denver crimes can call Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867 or by visiting metrodenvercrimestoppers.com. Tipsters can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000. 

Metro Denver Crime Stoppers works by assigning a code to people who anonymously submit a tip. Information is shared with law enforcement, and Crime Stoppers are notified at the conclusion of the investigation. 

From there, an awards committee reviews the information provided and, if the information leads to an arrest, the tipster will be notified. Rewards can be collected using the code numbers received when the tip was originally submitted. 

More information about Metro Denver Crime Stoppers can be found here. 

> Additional Crime Stoppers bulletins can be found here. 

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