Evander Tsosie, 18, was arrested about 10 a.m. at his family's residence in Pinon, Ariz., on the Navajo Nation near Window Rock, Ariz., Farmington Police Sgt. Robert Perez said.
"We received information from several people who may have been in the area at the time of the murder and his name was one of those we were able to develop through the course of the investigation," Perez said.
"Because he left the state, his location and identity became more difficult to confirm," Perez added.
Tsosie is accused of stabbing the 29-year-old Lee in the parking lot of the Safeway grocery store located at 730 W. Main Street. He stands charged with an open count of murder and tampering with evidence.
Police responded to the store about 8:40 p.m. that day because of reports of a fight. When they arrived, they found Lee dead in the parking lot.
Lee, who is from Shiprock, had purchased alcohol from the store and met several subjects nearby. Witnesses reported three men and one female began fighting with Lee until he fell to the ground, Perez said.
When he got up, he began running from the area, clutching his side until he collapsed in the parking lot.
Police initially searched for four people who were captured on video surveillance with Lee shortly before his murder, but further investigation led them to Tsosie.
"We believe (Tsosie) was in the area for several days prior to and during the incident and left shortly after," Perez said.
The motive for the stabbing remains under investigation, Perez said.
Farmington police accompanied by special agents from the U.S. Marshals Service and Navajo Police Investigators served the arrest warrant Tuesday.
Tsosie was booked into the Window Rock Holding Facility in Arizona, where he awaits extradition to New Mexico. He is being held on a $500,000 cash bond.
Farmington detectives continue to investigate and believe additional witnesses to the murder exist.
Anyone with any information is asked to contact Farmington Police detectives Heather Chavez, Paul Martinez or Perez at 505-599-1005. Individuals wishing to remain anonymous can call San Juan County Crime Stoppers at 505-334-TIPS where they can possibly receive a reward up to $2,000.