CHAVES COUNTY, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Attorney General’s office is taking over the investigation into the shooting death of a suspect by Chaves County deputies.
Attorney General Hector Balderas said in a statement Friday that District Attorney Dianna Luce asked for the review because of a conflict of interest in her office.
Luce did not give details about the conflict in a letter written Wednesday to Balderas.
Deputies were called to a dairy in southern Chaves County on March 22 about a man behaving erratically. According to witnesses, 34-year-old David Aguilera was striking tractors with a pipe and trying to steal them.
The two deputies tried subduing him with a taser several times. They fought with Aguilera and were able to put handcuffs on him.
Police body camera footage shows Aguilera in the backseat of a patrol vehicle resisting being handcuffed. He is then seen slipping out of the car and running. But then he jumps into the vehicle’s driver seat.
Deputies can be heard cursing at him and ordering him to get out of the car. Aguilera apologizes but refuses to get out of the car. A deputy threatens to shoot him and opens fire when the vehicle appears to roll forward.
Aguilera died from his wounds.
Roswell Police Department and New Mexico State Police conducted an initial investigation.