TAOS, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico State Police officer facing a lawsuit in a high-profile shooting case is asking a judge to issue a ruling. Officer Elias Montoya is the officer who shot at a minivan with Oriana Farrell and her kids outside of Taos in 2013 after a traffic stop went awry. Officers say Farrell was refusing to stop or cooperate and at one point, her teenage son got physical with the officer and that’s when officers broke out the window, and then Montoya fired a shot trying to stop her from driving away a second time.
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Farrell went on to sue NMSP and officer Montoya for alleged civil rights violations. that case is still pending and Monday, Montoya’s attorneys asked a judge to rule on the one count that alleges Montoya, himself is liable for damages suffered by Farrell. His attorneys argue that the state constitution does not allow for that. Because the case has been pending for so long, his attorney argues it’s his right to have a ruling on the count that applies to him. The judge hears arguments Monday but will issue a written ruling at a later date.