A 17-year-old suspect has been arrested in connection with the fatal hit-and-run of a man during a truck theft, Phoenix police say.

Police spokeswoman Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said the teen is accused of mowing down 34-year-old Mario Cordova with his own truck at about 6 a.m. Sept. 9.

Authorities believe the teen was in the process of stealing a 2001 Dodge Ram pickup and driving away when Cordova realized what was happening. Police said Cordova ran into the roadway and was struck by his own pickup before it fled.

Police and fire crews found Cordova critically injured, lying in the middle the roadway near 48th and Roosevelt streets. He died of his injuries two days later.

Fortune said the teen was arrested just before 2:30 p.m. Tuesday in the area of Madison Street and Fourth Avenue.

He was booked into Durango Juvenile Detention Center on suspicion of second-degree murder and theft of means of transportation.

Phoenix police did not provide the teen’s name. It is customary not to identify juveniles suspected of crimes unless and until they are prosecuted as adults.

It wasn’t clear how police connected the teen to the case. Fortune said the victim and suspect did not know each other.

She added that the incident is a reminder that property can be replaced and that people should call police and not take action on their own. 


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