A policewoman known for her heart of gold and affinity for people from all walks of life was found shot to death, and police charged a paroled convict she had befriended with killing her.

A hiker found the body of police Sgt. Cheryl Tiller, 38, near Petroglyph National Monument, a 17-mile ridge of black volcanic boulders etched with images of dragonflies, serpents and masked men."I don't doubt the fact she allowed somebody a little bit closer to her that was just on the other side, and that's what caused her death," homicide Detective Damon Fay said.

The 17-year veteran was found Wednesday. She had last been seen about 12 hours earlier with her friend Roy Paul Martinez, 25, Police Chief Gerald Galvin said.

Martinez, who had been convicted of aggravated assault, was arrested Thursday evening for an alleged parole violation. Police said he had removed an electronic ankle bracelet that was monitoring his whereabouts.

He didn't resist arrest and was charged with an open count of murder, police said.