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Family says boys were nearby when officer accidentally fired gun at Las Cruces school

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico -- A school resource officer inadvertently fired his gun inside a Las Cruces school on Wednesday afternoon, and the family of a student told ABC-7 that one 12-year-old boy was in the room with the officer when the gun went off and another was standing nearby.

The incident caused some tense moments and has prompted a police internal affairs investigation, but authorities said no one was injured.

The officer "accidentally discharged his duty-issued handgun in his office at Picacho Middle School, striking a wall," said police spokesman Dan Trujillo, who added that "no one was struck by the accidental discharge" about 1:30 p.m.

Trujillo wouldn't comment on whether anyone other than the officer was in the office when the mishap occurred about 1:30 p.m., but a Las Cruces family told ABC-7 that their son was standing close by and his friend was actually in the same room when the weapon fired and a bullet struck the wall.

The two 12-year-olds had apparently been summoned to the principal's office to be reprimanded for bringing firecrackers to school when the gun went off.

"How come they didn't call me? I'm pretty upset. As a matter of fact, I'm gonna hold my grandson from going to school tomorrow, I'm gonna keep him home because I want some answers from the school administration and from the Las Cruces Police Department," said Jack Provencio, the grandfather of one of the boys.

Trujillo indicated that the "circumstances surrounding the accidental discharge" was being reviewed by police internal affairs investigators and said he'd have no further comment until the probe is completed.

The officer involved is an eight year Las Cruces police veteran and has worked as a school resource officer since the 2015 school year, officials said.

That officer is one of ten school resource officers that Las Cruces police provide to the middle and high schools within the city limits. The officers work for the police department, with the school district providing office space at the schools.

Crime / New Mexico / News / Top Stories

Jim Parker

Jim Parker is the Director of Digital Content for ABC-7.

Comments

6 Comments

    1. When I was stationed at the Naval Air Station Norfolk Virginia in the early 60s, we would lose one or two Marine sentries every year. Evidently, late at night, bored with their sentry duties, they would resort to a quick draw competition similar to “High Noon.“ The slower draw would either end up wounded or leave his sentry post feet first.

  1. Officers crashing Patrol cars, firing weapons inside schools, threatening to kill people when responding to calls, etc…… El Paso’s Finest? Just read madmikes and gee dubb’s post and you get an immediate feel for the quality it personnel being hired.

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