Video shows explosion during Socorro Co. deputy-involved shooting


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NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Video of a shootout that triggered a truck explosion and left one suspect dead in Veguita, New Mexico has been released. Video shows how it was a chaotic scene from the get-go as two deputies responded to a call of people in the truck shooting guns at a home.

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The shooting happened on June 17, when Socorro County deputies responded to reports of people firing shots from a pickup at an abandoned trailer home in Veguita. Deputies say one man opened fire and the two deputies fired back. The pickup was hit by gunfire and exploded.

Screams pierce the night. No one was shot, but three of the five suspects suffered injuries after one of the Socorro County deputies’ bullets struck an oxygen tank in the bed of the Dodge pickup. The explosion sent a woman flying more than 20-feet. The suspect accused of firing off a shot at deputies, 32-year-old Dean Gross has burned arms. Another man and woman were not hurt. However, a fifth suspect ran from the scene and was found dead in a nearby arroyo.

Forty minutes later as backup swarmed to the scene, deputies and state police moved in to see how many injured suspects there were, and see if anyone was still armed and on the loose. In interviews with New Mexico State Police investigators later on, the deputies were still trying to process what they experienced. “As we are firing rounds, this explosion just goes off. And I’ve watched the video and that video does not do justice to it from what I saw,” a deputy said.

The alleged shooter, Dean Gross, who had the burned arms, is charged with aggravated assault on a peace officer. Both he and the other man who survives, Joseph Ramalia, also face felon with a firearm charges. Investigators haven’t given a cause of death for Max Jaramillo, only saying he was shot.

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