Woman arrested in connection with South Salt Lake ambush killing

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SOUTH SALT LAKE — A woman who allegedly bought drugs from a couple in a vehicle just before the male passenger was shot and killed has been arrested for investigation of murder.

The shooting has been described as an "ambush-style" attack.

Just after midnight on Dec. 4, Orlando J. Roybal, 32, was shot and killed near 600 East and Leland Avenue (3015 South). Roybal was a passenger in a vehicle driven by a woman. Police had stated previously that the two were reportedly going to that area to meet someone.

On Tuesday, Whitney Marie Connor, 27, of South Jordan, was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated assault.

Police say Connor arranged with the driver to buy drugs at the Leland address. She told the woman to "come to a location on a dark street known to her," a jail report states. When the vehicle that Roybal was in pulled up, Connor got into the back seat.

When the drug deal was completed, a man opened the driver's side door, took several undisclosed items, reached around the driver and shot Roybal multiple times, according to the report.

Originally it was reported that a group of people approached the vehicle. Investigators were still looking Friday for the gunman and others involved. South Salt Lake police detective Gary Keller said Connor has not been cooperative with investigators.

Keller said detectives were still trying to determine if the original purpose of setting up the drug deal was to shoot and kill Roybal or if was a case of a drug deal gone bad and the shooting death was an unexpected result.

Anyone with information about the killing is asked to call police at 801-840-4000.


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Pat Reavy


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