Kriston Charles Belinte Chee was award-winning bricklayer.
CHANDLER, ARIZONA — The investigation into what happened at a Walmart in Chandler, Arizona where Kriston Charles Belinte Chee, 36, an unarmed Navajo construction worker, was killed continues slowly.
The man who shot Chee and was not arrested, Cyle Wayne Quadlin, 25, remains free because he was not deemed a flight risk, according the Chandler Police Department.
Jerry Cobb, public information officer for the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, commented on the shooting to Native News Online:
“This particular matter is still under investigation by Chandler Police, so I’m afraid I don’t have any information on the specific circumstances. Once Chandler Police completes their investigation, their agency will determine whether or not to submit their findings to our office with a request for formal charges. If so, our office will review the matter and make a decision whether or not to charge the suspect and, if so, with what offense. At the moment, however, we do not have a submittal to review.”
Chee and his wife stopped by the Walmart last Sunday afternoon, February 16, 2014, to pick up some supplies he would need for a construction job he was to begin at a church on Monday morning before heading to a home improvement store.
During the stop at the service counter, Quadlin began harassing Chee’s wife. Chee intervened. Soon an argument escalated into a brawl, as Chee defended his wife.
Quadlin then took out a gun and shot Chee. He fled the Walmart and later was turned in by relatives. Quadlin told the Chandler Police Department he was in fear of his life because he was losing the brawl with Chee.
The Chandler Police Department is investigating the killing. Investigators are in the process of interviewing witnesses, some of whom live out of state, and reviewing the 911 call that came into the police department and a in-store video.
In an email on Friday to Native News Online late Friday, Chandler Police Department’s media relations officer, Sergeant Joe Favazzo wrote when asked if there was anything new to report on the investigation:
“Nothing new at this time. We are waiting for the 911 and video to be released by investigators, but that may take a while.”
In the meantime, Qaudlin remains free.
Arthur Jacobs contributed to this article from San Francisco.