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Dec 13, 2013 11:28 PM by Samantha Ptashkin

Driver in high speed chase linked to Tucson Quik Mart murder

TUCSON- The family of a murdered Tucson man feels a bit more safe, after learning one of the men linked to their loved one's death is now dead himself.

After carjacking a vehicle at the Spectrum Shopping Center on Thursday afternoon, Hector Karaca led Tucson Police on a high speed chase across the city's south side. The chase came to an end when Karaca, 24, collided with another vehicle. He got out of the car and started running away, before shooting and killing himself.

Karaca was on the run, accused of murdering two people in Phoenix in October.

He was also linked to the death of a Tucson Quik Mart employee. Christopher Cottle was killed in July 2006. He was a military veteran and grandfather. Karaca was never charged with his murder, but served time for "hindering prosecution".

News 4 Tucson sat down with one of Cottle's family members to talk about Karaca's sudden death. She wishes to remain anonymous, fearing retaliation from any of Karaca's friends. "I just pray that before he took his life he asked God for forgiveness," the relative says.

When Karaca was released from prison in September, after serving time for auto-theft and hindering prosecution, the family member says she feared the worst. "I just thought how many more lives is he going to take? Innocent people."

That fear was realized in October, when Karaca became the suspect of a double murder up in Phoenix.

After learning of his death, Cottle's family member says it's one less dangerous person on the street. However, she knows there are more dangerous people out there. "Nowadays you just don't know what's going to happen. I mean you could be driving down the street and something happens. It's hard."

Despite everything, she says she forgives Karaca, but she will never forget. "I'm pretty sure that by what crimes he has done, the Lord will take care of it."

One of the men who was with Karaca on the night of Cottle's murder was Daniel Chavez. He is the one who actually pulled the trigger. In 2009 he was sentenced to 22 years in prison.

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