Two Weeks, Four Cop Shootings

More gunfire from local deputies on Wednesday—and another person dead in Santa Fe County

At least one Santa Fe County Sheriff’s deputy appears to have shot and killed someone in the county early Wednesday, authorities say, marking the fourth time cops have fired here in two weeks’ time.

New Mexico State Police is leading the investigation of the most recent shooting—as well as the other three—at #1 Entrada Capulin, just off Bishop’s Lodge Road near Tesuque.

The agency announced the shooting in a bare-bones tweet around 10 am Wednesday and has refused to provide additional details since.

“NMSP investigating an [officer involved shooting] involving the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office” at the Entrada Capulin address, the tweet’s tortured syntax reads. “Deputies are [OK] and uninjured. Suspect is deceased. Details are limited, more information when available.”

SFR contacted State Police officer Dusty Francisco, a spokesman for the agency, for clarification around 3:15 pm, asking whether the tweet indicates “one or more deputies from SFCSO shot and killed someone.”

Francisco replies: “The investigation of the shooting incident is in the preliminary stages. Once those details are confirmed we will release them in a press release.”

Meanwhile, State Police has yet to release the names of Santa Fe deputies who shot and killed a man after a vehicle pursuit on Siler Road, just north of Rufina Street on June 23.

SFR has learned that State Police investigators interviewed the deputies present at that shooting scene, including the one who fired shots, on Tuesday. Typically, the agency releases the names of cops who shoot people after they’ve been interviewed in those investigations, which are supposed to determine whether the shooting was justified under New Mexico law.

Also on June 23, Santa Fe Police Sgt. Bradley Lopez shot and killed 29-year-old Francisco Javier Lino-Gutierrez during a foot chase through downtown Santa Fe. State Police also is investigating that shooting, and the agency released Lopez’s and Lino-Gutierrez’s’ names a week after the incident.

As State Police proceeds with criminal inquiries into those three Santa Fe-area cop shootings, New Mexico’s third-largest law enforcement agency also is investigating two of its own officers for firing on someone in the county.

On Sunday, NMSP issued a news release saying its officers had gone to assist Santa Fe Police, who had responded to a call about a man who was sitting on the Rail Runner tracks along Interstate 25.

As the SFPD officers arrived, according to State Police, the man “brandished a firearm at” them, then took off running, crossing the freeway and into a residential area near Calle Pardo and Chaparral. The State Police officers chased him.

As the chase proceeded, the man fired at least one shot at two State Police officers, who returned fire, striking the man, according to the news release. The man was taken to an area hospital with “non-life-threatning injuries.” The officers were not injured.

“The names of the officers involved, who have been placed on standard administrative leave, will not be released until after interviews have taken place,” the State Police release about the July 4 shooting reads. “The name of [the] suspect will not be released until he is positively identified.”

Editor’s note: This story was updated after its original publication to clarify the purpose of a State Police investigation into the shooting.

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