Xavier Zamora, 17, of Albuquerque, wanted a murder charge, accused of killing mailbox Jose Hernandez Monday afternoon.
Hernandez worked his route in southwest Albuquerque when he saw Zamora in a dispute with Zamora's mother outside her house, and decided to help her escalate the fight, Albuquerque police said.
Hernandez sprayed Mace on Zamora when the teenager became aggressive towards him, police said and said an interview with the mother.
The teenager then entered his house, came back with a gun and shot Hernandez in his stomach before he went back in, police said.
Someone attempted to revive Hernandez, but the 47-year-old post boat and army veteran eventually died of his wounds, police said.
Police were called, and SWAT officers surrounded the house. Even though no one had seen Zamora go before officials arrived, the officers eventually learned Zamora had flown, police said.
Zamora is 6 feet tall, has brown hair and brown eyes, and weighs 165 pounds, according to a warrant issued for the arrest
Everyone in the neighborhood knew the postman, a resident says
"Jose was a very special guy – he wasn't your regular mailman," Michael Shepherd told KOAT. "He wanted to get out of the way. He wanted to talk to you."
On Tuesday, people had left flowers and notes outside the house in Hernandez's memory, reported KOAT.
"To a great postman who sacrificed his life for the greater good," reads a note written by a colleague. "We will all remember you."
Hernandez, a carrier from the city's Five Points post office, worked for the US postal service for 12 years, the agency said.
"We are shocked and sad to learn from such a tragic death of one of our own employees and co-workers," said postsperson Rod Spurgeon. "He served his community with dedication and was a decorated honorary veteran.
" Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time. The postal service offers employee services to its family and colleagues. "
The shooting has shaken the city," Mayor Tim Keller said.
"We take care of the victim's family and with the entire postal service family," says Keller. While we are working to answer the many remaining unanswered questions, we know we need to, and will continue to fight, weapons that have taken a terrible twelve on our community. Fighting crime will remain our top priority.
"Albuquerque, please take some time in the next few days to personally make sure your local letter carrier knows how much you appreciate them and give them your love and support."
CNN's Amanda Watts and Casey Hicks contributed to this report.