A Palmdale man has been arrested in the ambush-style shooting death of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer, officials announced Monday.

Kevin Salazar, 29, was taken into custody around 5 a.m. after a standoff that lasted several hours.

“We are extremely confident we have the right person in custody,” L.A. County Sheriff Robert Luna said at a news conference.

Clinkunbroomer, 30, was found unconscious and suffering from gunshot wounds in his squad car near the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station at the intersection of Sierra Highway and Avenue Q around 6 p.m. Saturday.

Kevin Salazar
Kevin Salazar, accused of killing a Los Angeles County deputy, was taken into custody on Sept. 18, 2023. (Key News Network)

He was pronounced dead after being taken to the Antelope Valley Medical Center.

Investigators believe he was ambushed and killed for no apparent reason, and Luna described the attacker as a “coward.”

A key piece of evidence in the case was a video showing a car pulling up to Clinkunbroomer’s patrol vehicle just before the shooting. Images of the vehicle were widely circulated, along with a $250,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of the person responsible.

Luna said numerous firearms were recovered from the Palmdale home and a “vehicle of interest.”

Kevin Salazar’s family spoke to reporters outside the home Monday afternoon.

Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer
Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer is seen in a photo provided by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

“We are not justifying anything. We feel for [Clinkunbroomer’s] family. It hurts,” said Jessica Salazar, his sister.

Family members say Salazar suffers from serious mental health issues.

“I want you guys to know that my brother did have schizophrenia. He had paranoia. He heard voices,” his sister said. “We asked for help. We’ve taken him to the hospital.”

Clinkunbroomer, an eight-year veteran of the force, spent the last year and a half as a training officer. He was also recently engaged after proposing to his girlfriend just four days before his death.

Approximately 1,000 people showed up at the sheriff’s station for a vigil Sunday night.

Bumper stickers with Clinkunbroomer’s picture reading “The bravest often fall by the hands of cowards. In loving memory of Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer” were being handed out at the sheriff’s station early Monday.