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New Mexico

New Mexico Supreme Court takes up fatal pursuit cases

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Attorneys in New Mexico have argued whether defendants could face first-degree felony murder charges after causing fatal crashes while fleeing authorities.

The Albuquerque Journal that felony murder is a count used when a person is killed during certain felony crimes.

Authorities say the issue Monday was whether aggravated fleeing a law enforcement officer is one of the crimes the state can use as a predicate for felony murder.

The state Supreme Court held in 2016 that the predicate felony must have a felonious purpose independent of the homicide.

District court officials argued avoiding apprehension is not wanting to cause harm.

Other officials argue it is the public endangerment in aggravated fleeing that separates it from its misdemeanor charge.

It’s unclear when the Supreme Court would come to a decision.

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Information from: Albuquerque Journal,

Associated Press

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