By Dan Whitcomb
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A former Los Angeles police officer's father, who authorities say helped his son flee across the border to Mexico to avoid facing murder charges, was arrested on Thursday and accused of lying to federal agents, the FBI said.
Victor Solis, 53, was taken into custody at a home where he lived in Lancaster, east of Los Angeles, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said. He was expected to make an initial appearance in federal court later on Thursday afternoon.
His son, Henry Solis, who was a probationary Los Angeles police officer at the time, is accused of shooting Salome Rodriguez Jr. to death on March 13, in downtown Pomona, California following a fight there.
Solis, 27, was off duty at the time and since has been fired from the Los Angeles Police Department.
The younger Solis vanished from the Los Angeles area following the shooting and FBI officials, saying that they believed he fled to Mexico, issued a $25,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.
In an affidavit filed with the criminal complaint on Thursday, an FBI agent wrote that Victor Solis admitted driving his son some 700 miles from Lancaster, California to El Paso, Texas, in the hours after the murder.
Victor Solis told FBI agents that he dropped his son at a bus station in El Paso before calling a detective from a pay phone and saying that authorities would never find his son, according to the court documents.
But a video recording shows father and son crossing the U.S. border into Juarez, Mexico, early on the day after the murder, the FBI agent wrote in the affidavit.
The criminal complaint asks that Victor Solis, who was born in Mexico, be held without bail because he is a foreign national who assisted a fugitive in avoiding apprehension who himself presents a flight risk.
According to the FBI Henry Solis told family members that he would never be seen again before calling his father to drive him to Texas.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Bernard Orr)