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Female UNM athlete shot at NE ABQ party

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

A University of New Mexico female athlete was shot in the leg early Sunday at a party in Northeast Albuquerque reportedly held in a home being rented out for the weekend by Lobo men’s basketball leading scorer JaQuan Lyle.

The female athlete was one of two people shot in the leg at the party, according both to Albuquerque Police Department investigators and administrators with UNM Athletics. Neither victim was reported to have suffered life-threatening injuries.

UNM officials declined to identify the athlete or the sport she plays.

The party was attended by a large number of people, including UNM students, nonstudents and dozens of players from numerous Lobo varsity sports teams, according to multiple accounts.

Partygoers reportedly also included some prospective football recruits who were visiting Albuquerque for the weekend. All recruits left the party before the shooting and were back home by their midnight curfew, one UNM official told the Journal.

Lyle, who is nursing a left knee injury, did not attend the Lobo men’s basketball game Saturday in Reno, Nevada, where the team lost by 22 points.

The team landed back in Albuquerque by 11 p.m. and several Lobo basketball players were reported to have attended the party.

UNM is preparing to play San Diego State on Wednesday and it is uncertain what Lyle’s status concerning his injury is for that game.

Albuquerque police on Monday afternoon sent out a news release stating they received a call around 2 a.m. Sunday about shots fired at a party in the 1300 block of Chama Street NE.

“The caller advised that people were shooting at each other,” the APD news release stated. “A female was found with a gunshot in the leg. Another individual was shot in the ankle.”

Police have yet to file criminal charges, and they have made no indication that UNM student athletes are suspects in the shooting.

UNM Athletic Director Eddie Nuñez said in a statement Monday, “We are aware of an incident that occurred on Saturday night involving some of our student-athletes. We are currently working through the proper channels to gather more information. We consider this matter very serious. As a department, we are thankful that everyone is safe and that the situation as we understand it didn’t escalate. We will reserve comment until a more appropriate time when we have more information.”

UNM has not announced any player discipline for any sports for those who attended the party.

UNM President Garnett Stokes said in an emailed statement Monday, “We are, of course, concerned about how our students conduct themselves in their everyday lives as it impacts their future and the image of the institution. However, we are more concerned about the safety of our community and why violence is touching so many people. We are grateful that the injuries sustained … were not life-threatening, and hope for their quick and full recovery.”

Stokes and Nuñez spent the day in Santa Fe on Monday, where it was UNM Day at the State Legislature. Talk of the weekend incident, and gun violence in general, picked up around the Round House in the afternoon as media reports of the shooting broke.

The Journal has learned the party was heavily promoted around the UNM campus area and that fliers announcing it were printed and passed around. Lyle’s role in the promotion of the party is unclear.

The UNM men’s basketball team has had a series of off-court problems since mid-December, which include one player being accused of attempted rape, but not charged, and ultimately dismissed from the team after an aggravated DWI arrest, and another who was accused of battery against a household member. He also has not been charged.

CORRECTION: The headline and first paragraph of this story have been corrected to show the party occurred in Northeast Albuquerque.

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