*Warning: Video above contains graphic content that may be difficult to watch
LOS LUNAS, N.M. (KRQE) – New video shows the chaos and danger that unfolded after a suspected car thief shot a deputy in the leg. The shooter then led officers on a wild chase through Los Lunas and was killed in a shootout earlier this month.
Story Continues Below
- Trending: Hazing incident ends football season at NM high school
- Español: KRQE En Español: Viernes 22 de Octubre 2021
- Weather: Clouds moving through this evening
- Crime: Rio Rancho man arrested following altercation at truck stop
A Valencia County deputy had been questioning a couple by a stolen black Hyundai in Los Lunas. “I was chasing him and he jumps in the driver seat of the car and so I deployed a second set of laser probes and I hit him in the neck and left shoulder.”
Investigators say the suspect, Jose Baca, shot the deputy in the leg before taking off with his girlfriend in a white pickup truck. Deputies and New Mexico State Police chased him down Main Street as Baca left a trail of crashes in his wake. A few minutes later, Baca veered off the road and lost control of the truck.
More officers pulled through the cloud of dust to see the deputy and Baca engaged in a close-range shootout. They rushed into the gunfire and immediately started shooting at the suspect on the ground.
The deputy in the shootout, his face covered in blood, tells his fellow deputies he’s amazed he wasn’t hit by a bullet. “He shot towards my face. I don’t know what he hit but I went white I thought I got shot in the face,” the deputy said.
Baca’s girlfriend made a run for it from the pickup truck. Officers caught up with her seconds later and cuffed her. She then claimed she had nothing to do with what happened. Investigators have not released her name or said if she has been charged with anything.
Baca, who had a history of domestic violence, theft and drugs was on probation at the time.