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Police seek witness in west Salt Lake City shooting

Published November 1, 2012 12:10 pm

Jorge Tapia • Detectives ask public's help in finding him.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Police are looking for a man they describe as a "key witness" to a fatal shooting at a west Salt Lake City party last weekend.

Det. Josh Ashdown said Thursday investigators had not been able locate Jorge Alfredo Tapia, 21, in connection with their probe into the early Sunday morning slaying of Valentin Sigala Jr., 20, at a home in the area of 1100 Glendale Drive (1500 West).

"We're asking the public's help in locating him. He is not a suspect, but we would like to talk to him," Ashdown said.

On Monday, the alleged shooter — Phillip James Lucero, 22 — walked into the main Salt Lake Police Department offices at 315 E. 200 South and surrendered.

Lucero is charged in 3rd District Court with one count of first-degree felony murder.

According to court documents, Lucero shot Sigala once in the chest after an argument began between various people at the party. Lucero was being held in Salt Lake County jail in lieu of $1 million bail.

After the shooting, police say, Sigala's friends drove him to the hospital, dropped him off and left. Officers then were called to Intermountain Medical Center, where they found that Sigala was already deceased.

Tapia is described as Latino, 5-foot-6 with brown eyes and short black hair.

Anyone who knows his whereabouts or has other information about Tapia is asked to call police at 801-799-3000. Anonymous tips may be sent by texting TIPSLCPD plus information to CRIMES (274637). Reference: case #12-188041.

remims@sltrib.com