State police investigate Rio Arriba deputy shooting

August 26, 2018

New Mexico State Police is investigating an incident early Friday morning north of Española in which a Rio Arriba County sheriff’s deputy fired a shot, the agency announced on Twitter. No one was hurt, according to the tweet.

Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to a call for a fight in progress in the Hernández area shortly before 2 a.m. Friday, according to state police and Rio Arriba Sheriff’s Maj. Randy Sanches and discovered two men outside a home on County Road 1.

When deputies approached, the men fled, and deputies chased them, state police said in a news release. During the chase, one of the sheriff’s deputies fired his gun but did not hit anyone, state police said.

Sanches told The New Mexican one of the men was holding a shotgun and that he raised the gun toward sheriff’s deputies, prompting one of the deputies to fire a single shot.

“Based on the information that we have, we have no reason to believe this was not justified,” Sanches said.

Deputies detained the men in the altercation, the state police news release said, but they were later released. Authorities did not identify the two men.

Sheriff James Lujan said the deputy who fired the shot is on standard administrative leave while the incident is under investigation.

Update hourly