SANTA FE, N.M. — Downtown Santa Fe was teeming with police activity Wednesday morning due to an incident that ended when a Santa Fe police officer shot and killed an armed man.
No officers or bystanders were injured, according to Santa Fe police.
The incident started about 10:15 a.m. at De Vargas Park, across Sandoval Street from a skate park in the downtown area and behind the First Judicial District courthouse.
Santa Fe police say they responded to a call about a fight in progress about 10:05 a.m. One person had been shot and police officers arriving at the scene gave aid to the shooting victim before they were transported to a local hospital for treatment.
Police did not disclose the gender or age of the shooting victim or their condition.
Meanwhile, police pursued the suspect east on West Alameda Street in the direction of the commercial district heavily populated this time of year by tourists.
“I saw him walking down the street and police were on the other side of the street yelling at him, ‘Drop the gun, drop the gun,” said Scott Dawson, whose office at the state Land Office overlooks West Alameda. “He went around the corner and then I heard two or three shots.”
“Just what the tourists want to see,” quipped a woman visiting from Albuquerque.
A man visiting from Colorado who witnessed the shooting said the man was shot in front of the Loretto Chapel, a tourist attraction famous for its “miraculous staircase.”
He and his wife were eating breakfast at a nearby restaurant when he saw police yelling at the suspect to drop his weapon.
“Police gave him every chance (to drop the gun),” said the man, who was escorted away by police to be interviewed before a reporter could ask his name.
State police are investigating killing, as is standard protocol in cases of officer-involved shootings, while Santa Fe police are investigating the earlier incident at De Vargas Park.
SFPD and the city of Santa Fe issued a news release confirming that “officers engaged with and shot the suspect” and the suspect had died. It said that SFPD and the city would not be providing further comment.
The first shooting took place directly across West De Vargas Street from the 1st Judicial District Attorney’s Office.
D.A. Mary Carmack-Altwies issued a statement early Wednesday afternoon:
“I am saddened to learn of the shootings that occurred today, including one officer involved shooting. As always, our office pledges full transparency in our handling of officer involved shootings, which is critical for ensuring public trust in the justice system,” she said. “While we encourage and await the results of a full investigation, the preliminary reports appear to show that the suspect had a gun and that officers were in danger. We always grieve the loss of any life, regardless of the circumstances.”