No charges will be filed against any current or former New Mexico State University basketball players or employees in connection with a deadly shooting on the University of New Mexico’s campus last year, the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office announced this week.
Last November, former Aggie player Mike Peake shot and killed a UNM student when Peake was lured to campus by a female student and then jumped by three male students.
Police have said the UNM students were retaliating over a fight that Peake was involved in during the Lobo-Aggie football game earlier that fall.
Peake and the rest of the Aggie men’s basketball team were staying at a hotel in Albuquerque for the annual Lobo-Aggie rivalry game, which had been scheduled for the night of the shooting.
UNM students Brandon Travis shot Peake in the leg and Peake returned fire, killing Travis. Prosecutors determined that Peake acted in self-defense, said Nancy Laflin, a spokeswoman for the district attorney.
Three UNM students — Mya Hill, Jonathan Smith and Eli-sha Upshaw — were charged in connection with the shooting.
Several NMSU players went to UNM’s campus after the shooting and police later collected evidence — including the gun and a tablet Peake had at the time of the shooting — from coaches.
Three other Aggie players — Issa Muhammad, Anthony Roy and Marchelus Avery — who police say helped Peake hide a gun and tablet were suspended for one game.
Greg Heiar, the coach of the men’s basketball team at the time, was later fired for cause in the wake of a hazing scandal on the team. NMSU ultimately canceled the final games of its season.
“While their lack of cooperation after the shooting certainly did not help to further the investigation, this behavior does not appear to meet the legal standard of criminal obstruction or tampering with evidence,” Laflin said in an email. “Should any new information surface that could impact this decision, we may reconsider.”
Peake, who was suspended indefinitely and ultimately left NMSU, took to social media after news broke that he wouldn’t face any charges.
“So glad I didn’t lose myself through this process, I love how everyone had their own pieces to say. Now it’s my turn to explain MY STORY. In due time,” Peake said on Twitter Monday after KOB-TV reported that Peake won’t be charged.
“Y’all don’t know how many times I wanted to/thought about giving up on this dream of (mine),” he added.
Season in shambles: A timeline of NMSU men’s basketball program in 2022-2023