*Warning – video content may be disturbing to some viewers
FARMINGTON, N.M. (KRQE) – New video shows the moment an off-duty sheriff confronts a driver who ran a red light. It ends with the driver’s dog being shot and killed.
The San Juan County District Attorney’s Office says the incident began on Feb. 17 after the driver was driving recklessly and even at one point illegally passing the San Juan County Sheriff, Shane Ferrari. Surveillance video released today shows the driver going through a red light on Apache Street and airport drive in Farmington, with the sheriff right behind him. Once the light turns green, sheriff Ferarri follows the driver.
The District Attorney’s Office says sheriff Ferrari followed the driver about half a mile to a parking lot near La Plata and Padilla Drive. The driver gets out of his car with a metal pipe in his hands. The sheriff then exits his car. The Sheriff’s Office says sheriff Ferrari identified himself and told the man to stop and show his hands.
That’s when the driver’s dog jumps out and runs toward the sheriff. The sheriff begins to step back and he shoots the dog – fearing an attack. The District Attorney’s office says they’re currently investigating charges against the driver and that is why we are not identifying him.
“Based on what we know so far, it looks like that was the intent of the sheriff was to get officers there that were in marked units. However, when the vehicle pulled off…he stopped behind the vehicle. And you see what ensued after that which was precipitated by the suspect in the case,” says Dustin O’Brien, San Juan District Attorney’s Office.
The driver could be charged with reckless driving, failure to obey a traffic control device, and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The District Attorney’s Office says the sheriff is not facing any charges.