FORT SMITH (KFSM) – The Fort Smith Police Department has arrested a man in connection to a shooting investigation, according to a news release.
Roberto A. Romero, 30, was taken into custody on Aug. 20 after an arrest warrant was issued for him on suspicion of first-degree battery, the release states.
The warrant stemmed from a shooting that took place near North 6th Street and High Street during the late hours of July 4. The victim was shot in the leg from a pellet believed to have been fired by a shotgun, according to the release.
Romero was also believed to be a suspect in an unrelated shooting that took place in the early morning hours of Aug. 17. Police met with the victim of that shooting at Sparks Regional Medical Center. The victim had “apparent” gunshot (pellet) wounds to his left foot, the release states.
The victim said he had been leaving Club Azteca near North 9th Street and North B Street when he was shot. The weapon used was likely a shotgun, according to the release.
On Aug. 20, police received information that Romero was inside a residence in the 1000 block of South 18th Street. They set up surveillance while waiting for a SWAT team to execute the search warrant. Romero left in a vehicle, and undercover units followed him. A patrol officer tried to stop Romero for a traffic stop, but he sped off, leading officers on a brief chase, the release states.
When he stopped his vehicle, Romero took off running. Several officers took off after him, and he was arrested, according to the release.
Romero’s home was searched, and investigators seized a ballistic vest, semi-automatic handguns, a sawed-off shotgun, ammunition, counterfeit money, approximately 28 grams of what officers believe is methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia, the release states.
The girlfriend of Romero and a two-year-old child were at the home during the search, the release states.
Romero was booked into the Sebastian County Detention Center. He is being held without bond, according to the release.
He faces charges of first degree battery – firearm (two counts), felon in possession of a firearm, simultaneous possession of drugs and firearms, possession of a defaced firearm, possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, first-degree forgery, maintaining a premises for drug activities, second-degree endangering the welfare of a minor and parole violation, the release states.
The girlfriend of Romero, Yesenia Castro-Galdamez, 21, of Fort Smith was interviewed and arrested as well. She was booked into the Sebastian County Detention Center and faces a charge of second-degree endangering the welfare of a minor. Her bond was set at $1,000, according to the release.