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Man Accused of Killing Trooper Who Pulled Over to Help Him Change Tire Is Person of Interest in EMT's Death

Jaremy Smith was driving the car of paramedic Phonesia Machado-Fore when he allegedly shot and killed state trooper Justin Hare, authorities claim

<p>New Mexico State Police (2)</p> Justin Hare, left, and Phonesia Macahdo-Fore

New Mexico State Police (2)

Justin Hare, left, and Phonesia Macahdo-Fore

A man accused of killing a New Mexico State Police Officer while driving a car belonging to a slain South Carolina paramedic was arrested Sunday following a shootout with law enforcement.

State police officer Justin Hare was called to assist a motorist with a flat tire early Friday morning, State Police Chief Troy Weisler said at a press conference Saturday. The motorist, Jaremy Alexander Smith, a South Carolina resident, allegedly shot Hare before fleeing the scene, the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office says.

Authorities allege that Smith was driving a white BMW belonging to paramedic Phonesia Machado-Fore, whose body was found Friday evening in South Carolina, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office.

Following a two-day manhunt, Smith was arrested Sunday in Albuquerque after he was shot in the foot by a sheriff’s deputy, according to authorities in Bernalillo County.

<p> New Mexico State Police</p> Jaremy Smith

New Mexico State Police

Jaremy Smith

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office says Smith is considered a person of interest in Machado-Fore’s death, but has not been charged in connection and will remain in New Mexico on a murder warrant.

It is not immediately clear if Smith has been formally charged in Hare’s death, but prior to his arrest, New Mexico State Police said it had issued a warrant for his arrest on a number of charges, including first-degree murder and armed robbery.

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“Officer Hare died serving his state and his community,” Weisler said Saturday. “On a cold, dark and windy morning, he offered help to a person he thought was in need. That person killed him in cold blood.”

Authorities have not yet said what prior connection, if any, there was between Smith and Machado-Fore, who was last seen Tuesday.

“Mrs. Fore was one of us, a fellow first responder,” Marion County Sheriff Brian Wallace says in a statement. “Her death is senseless.  Our community has suffered a tremendous loss.  My team and I will not stop until we bring the person or persons responsible for her death to justice."

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