ARTESIA, N.M. (KRQE) - Armed thieves pretending to be drug agents shot and killed the man they were trying rob during a struggle over a rifle, the Artesia Police Department reports.
Timothy Wallace was found dead from a gunshot wound to his head Tuesday morning in his home in the 1900 block of West Richardson in Artesia.
Police reported blood and damage at the scene suggested a sudden, violent incident.
A telephone tip later in the day led police to Senovio Mendoza, 29, of Carlsbad who implicated himself and others as being involved in an attempt to steal drugs from Wallace, according to a statement released by Artesia police.
Investigators quoted Mendoza as saying he and Mathew Sloan put on masks before bursting into the home and identifying themselves as agents of the Pecos Valley Drug Task Force.
Sloan, 28, was armed with a rifle that discharged as he and Sloan fought over it, police said.
Mendoza and Sloan were both arrested early Wednesday and charged with an open count of murder and other alleged crimes. Neither has yet been arraigned or pleaded to the charges.
Additional arrests are possible, police said.
The statement from Artesia police did not indicate the type of drugs involved in the case.
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