LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KRQE) – The first week of former Deputy Tai Chan’s murder trial is wrapping up with jurors hearing from several officers who responded to a Las Cruces hotel in 2014, where Deputy Jeremy Martin was killed.
An officer told the jury on Friday that Chan was acting weird after the deadly shooting.
Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office Deputies Chan and Martin were staying at the Hotel Encanto in Las Cruces while traveling for work on Oct. 27, 2014.
Chan is now on trial for his fellow deputy’s murder.
Prosecutors say Chan gunned down Martin, shooting him in the back as he tried to run away.
The defense says Chan fired out of fear for his own life in order to protect against an attack from Martin.
At the scene, officers arrived to see Martin lying on the floor in the hotel lobby and Chan sitting in the stairwell on the seventh floor, where the shooting happened.
An officer, who spoke with Chan at the scene, testified that Chan “wasn’t on planet Earth.”
“I was asking him simple direct questions: Is anybody else in the room? What room were you in? And those basic questions weren’t being answered,” said LCPD Ofc. Jonathan Boehne. “He was looking either through me or over my shoulder the entire time, didn’t seem to be engaged with me as a person.”
The officer said when asked what hotel room he was staying in, Chan said #7111.
That’s not a room number at the hotel, but the defense points out it was actually Chan’s SFCO badge number. The hotel room was 711.
The trial is scheduled to continue through next week.
This is a re-trial for Chan after his first trial ended with a hung jury last year.