LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico State University has released its investigation into how the school handled a deadly shooting involving Aggie basketball players on the University of New Mexico campus. Although an investigation by an Albuquerque law firm found that NMSU did not break any laws, there are still some troubling findings.

On Nov. 19, 2022, NMSU player Mike Peake was shot in the leg and UNM student Brandon Travis was killed after an exchange of gunfire near Coronado Hall on UNM’s campus. According to a police report, surveillance video also shows three NMSU players picking up Peake shortly after the shooting and putting the gun in the trunk of a car.

According to a New Mexico State Police report, it took officers hours of phone calls and chasing the team bus down I-25 in order to collect evidence regarding the case. The gun was eventually located in the possession of an assistant coach.

NMSU hired the Rodey Law Firm to conduct a third-party investigation and make recommendations regarding the team’s future interactions. The investigation was based on NMSU policies, police videos, news coverage, and witness interviews; but it states that multiple coaches and players refused to be interviewed.

The investigation reports, “We did not identify any failure by NMSU to meet its legal obligations in managing its student-athletes.” However, the report did provide six major recommendations for the team:

  1. Team Curfews
    • “Because so many players on the NMSU basketball team broke curfew on
      the night of the shooting incident, and in fact were out of their hotel rooms well after
      curfew, we recommend that NMSU consider developing a policy that addresses the
      adoption and enforcement of team curfews during out-of-town travel and the related
      expectations of NMSU student-athletes. The policy should make clear to student-athletes the importance of following team curfew rules and the importance of holding themselves out as student ambassadors consistent with NMSU values. NMSU should train all coaches and student-athletes as to these expectations.”
  2. Weapons Policy
    • “NMSU should consider adopting and implementing a more detailed
      weapons policy that specifically prohibits the possession of any weapon or firearm by
      any student-athlete while traveling for team events or while engaging in any activity
      where the student-athlete is representing NMSU. NMSU should train all coaches and
      student-athletes as to the same.”
  3. Communication with Law Enforcement
    • “Although very rare, there are times when coaches or other NMSU staff will be contacted by law enforcement with respect to potential criminal activity involving a student-athlete, whether that student-athlete is traveling with the team or otherwise engaged in an activity representing NMSU. NMSU should develop a policy to address the process and procedure for coaches with respect to communicating with law enforcement, particularly when they are involved in out-of-town travel. Such a policy should include identification of the person or persons responsible
      for such communication, and all coaches and other staff should be trained as to the same.”
  4. Strengthening Institutional Culture within NMSU Athletic Programs
    • “NMSU should implement measures to strengthen a culture that encourages student-athletes to adhere to the integrity and values of NMSU at all times, not just during travel.”
  5. University Oversight Regarding Student Athletes
    • “NMSU should consider adopting a policy that sets forth (1) how and when information regarding misconduct by a student-athlete should be shared among and between various stakeholders within the University and (2) how NMSU will coordinate with coaches or others in the Athletic Department to impose appropriate discipline if the University becomes aware that a student-athlete has engaged in conduct that is inappropriate, violates the NMSU Student Code of Conduct or violates the NMSU Student-Athlete Handbook.”
  6. NMSU Student-Athlete Handbook
    • “We recommend that NMSU revise its Student-Athlete Handbook to be consistent with the above recommendations once they are implemented.”

NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu released a statement today saying, “We now know we have areas that can be strengthened. We will soon announce a task force that will work closely with the administration and the Board of Regents to address these recommendations.” To see the full investigative report click here. To see the Chancellor’s statement click here.