LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - The December 8th road rage shooting of a 30-year-old man at Rinconada and Northrise appears to be an act of self-defense and no charges will be filed, police said.
Detectives interviewed the 30-year-old man shot and the man allegedly said he and two friends aggressively pursued a 28-year-old man driving a two-door car on Rinconada Boulevard. Police officials say the man's information was confirmed by other witnesses.
The 30-year-old man was the middle passenger riding with two friends in a white single-cab pickup pulling a trailer at about 5 p.m. that day. The three men became upset when the two-door car pulled up behind them but stopped too close to their trailer at a traffic light on Rinconada and Northrise Drive.
Occupants got out of the pickup and briefly tried to confront the 28-year-old driver of the car, police said. When the light turned green, the 28-year-old tried to enter Highway 70 eastbound but was denied access to the onramp by the driver of the pickup.
Police said the 28-year-old then drove north on Rinconada but was "aggressively followed by the pickup." The driver made a U-turn on Rinconada, but was blocked in by the pickup near the intersection of Rinconada and Settler's Pass. Police say that's where the three occupants of the pickup exited and began throwing rocks and beer bottles at the car.
The 28-year-old man in the car, fearing for his safety, pulled out a 9mm handgun and fired two to three rounds at the aggressors, striking the 30-year-old man once in the abdomen.
911 calls obtained by ABC-7's New Mexico Mobile Newsroom reveal an off-duty state police officer picking up his kid was near the scene of the shooting.
"I think this guy got hit, yeah. There is a truck here and it looks like there is a man down. Yeah, he's down," the off-duty officer told the 911 operator.
People are heard screaming in the background and the off-duty state police officer tries to keep them calm while paramedics and police arrive.
In another call, the caller told the 911 operator he saw what seemed to be a like a car crash. "There is a person on the ground. People are screaming," the caller said.
A third caller told the operator, "there is someone unconscious on the street and there is someone kicking vehicles and fighting."
Police said the shooter fled the scene but called police a short time later to tell them what happened.
Detectives learned the three occupants of the pickup intended to cause bodily harm to the driver of the car, police officials said. The 30-year-old man shot remains hospitalized in critical but stable condition at University Medical Center in El Paso.
The Las Cruces Police Department is not publicly identifying those involved since no charges are expected to be filed.