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Sandoval Co. Sgt. Killed in Shootout

Joe HarrisALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A Sandoval County Sheriff’s Sergeant who was wounded during a shootout earlier today has died.

A suspect also was killed in the firefight that happened about 4:30 a.m., according to Sheriff John Paul Trujillo. The incident occurred on N.M. 126, the road to Fenton Lake, according to the Associated Press.

Sgt. Joe Harris was assisting in a sheriff’s investigation involving a string of burglaries in the Jemez Springs area, according to Trujillo.

“Some type of altercation occurred, I’m not sure what took place and he was shot in the groin area,” Trujillo said of Harris. “It hit one of the major vessels.”

Harris was airlifted to the University of New Mexico Hospital. He was pronounced dead at 6:45 a.m.

The Sandoval County Sheriff’s Office is working with State Police on an investigation into the shooting. The departments also are trying to find out the identity of the suspect who was a transient

Harris previously worked with the Rio Rancho Department of Public Safety as a police officer for 20 years. When he retired, Trujillo said he brought him on board with the Sheriff’s Department.

Harris had been with the department for about 6 1/2 years, Trujillo said.


State Police say suspect also wounded in shootout around 4:30 this morning.

A still-unnamed Sandoval County sheriff’s sergeant and a suspect were hospitalized following a shootout in the area of Fenton Lake, north of Jemez Springs, around 4:30 a.m. today, State Police told KOB-TV.

The sergeant was shot in the stomach, Sandoval County Sheriff John Paul Trujillo earlier told KOB-TV.

The sergeant is in critical condition after being airlifted to University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque, according to KRQE News 13, but there is still no word on what caused the confrontation or the condition of the suspect.

Breaking at 6:46am — Sandoval County Deputy Shot: Officer in critical condition after being shot in stomach around 4:30 this morning.

A Sandoval County sheriff’s deputy is hospitalized in critical condition after being shot in the stomach around 4:30 this morning near Jemez, Sheriff John Paul Trujillo told KOB-TV.

The shooting took place in a wooded area, but no other details were immediately available, the sheriff told KOB-TV.


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