Man who shot NMSP officer to argue self-defense

New Mexico News

NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – It was terrifying dash camera video of a state police officer pulling over a suspect and him almost immediately opening fire last September. Robert Nelson was eventually charged with the attempted murder of a federal officer because she was on a federal task force but now Nelson’s attorneys are requesting some redacted documents as they plan to argue self-defense. 


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New Mexico State Police Officer Sharron Duran goes down on the side of I-40, near the Laguna Pueblo but is back up seconds later, returning fire.

“I wasn’t sure where I got hit or how bad my injuries were, all I knew is I wasn’t ready to die,” Duran said.

Video shows the incident on September 20, 2020. Duran managed to escape with a gunshot to her hands. Injured, she was still able to chase the man who had just shot her.

Duran was able to arrest Nelson, and he was later charged with attempted murder of a federal officer because prosecutors say Duran was working on a federal task force. Now, Nelson’s attorneys have filed a motion demanding the un-redacted background check that qualified her to be on a federal task force that day. They claim it is integral to their defense.

Nelson’s attorneys say that information “may be relevant to a potential self-defense argument if the evidence shows that officer Duran was deemed unfit due to her having a propensity for violence.” They don’t explain what they believe may be redacted. What is clear from the video that day is that Nelson fired first.

Even his father had some comments about what happened that day. “I’m just thankful the officer is okay,“ said Nelson’s father.

The judge has ordered prosecutors to hand over that letter to her for review within 10 days. She will then decide if it’s relevant to the case.

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