NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – New police video shows the moments San Juan County deputies opened fire on a man who pointed what they believed to be a gun at them. The sheriff says this all could have been avoided but blames a failure in the state’s judicial system.
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Deputies say on September 13, they were serving a search warrant at 44-year-old Tedman Werito‘s home in Farmington. That same day, Werito was accused of badly beating a woman with a bat. At first, deputies asked him to walk out but he refused and began making threats. That’s when county SWAT was called in and things escalated.
“He just threw something out! He just threw something out, what is that? He’s throwing a grenade at us,” said a deputy in lapel video. The grenade was not working and deputies then threw flashbangs and shot tear gas at the house.
Deputies say Werito then pointed a gun at them and they opened fire. Werito was pronounced dead on the scene after investigating police say the gun he had was a replica. San Juan County Sheriff Shane Ferrari says Werito had a long criminal history but he was released from jail on pretrial services in December of 2020 for failure to appear on a battery charge.
While out, Werito was accused of aggravated assault. Ferrari is now asking for change, saying this all could have been avoided. “This is another example of New Mexico’s failed bail reform system. In the upcoming legislative session, I ask our legislators to listen to all New Mexico law enforcement. We warned about this outcome and you ignored it,” said Ferrari.
The case will be reviewed by the district attorney’s office.