Murder suspect detained after search in Parrita

Officials  said today that they have apprehended the prime suspect in the killing Wednesday of a police officer in Parrita.

The suspect is Watson Smith, 20, who was the object of an all-night search. The security ministry said that Smith was detained in a rural area near El Tigre de Parrita where the shooting happened. A .38-caliber firearm also was confiscated, the ministry said.

The arrest came about 4:30 a.m., less than 12 hours after the shooting that killed the officer in the central Pacific community.

The dead officer was  Marco Antonio Berrocal Madriz, 52, of nearby Esterillos Oeste, said the security ministry. He was shot in the head as he and other officers tried to detain a man. Smith was being sought on a warrant to answer allegations of attempted murder and robbery involving a crime in the Limón area, the ministry said.

The security ministry had mounted a massive

Police officers prepared for search in Parrita

Police officers prepared for search in Parrita

search in the area, and the suspect was believed to be on foot.

The ministry said that the suspect fled when he saw police and then began firing at them  a few minutes later.

Berrocal had been a police officer since 1996, said the ministry.

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