LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) – The Las Cruces Police Department officer who was injured in a shootout with a suspect last month will return to the job soon, officials said Wednesday.
Patrol officer Anthony Harrison, who was shot on June 17 by Francisco “Paco” Tarin, has been medically cleared and will be able to return to work in the next few days, a news release from the Las Cruces Police Department said.
Police said Tarin, 35, fired at Harrison after the officer shined a spotlight on him at Lohman Avenue and Nacho Drive. Tarin was eventually killed in a shootout with multiple law enforcement agencies in the parking lot of a nearby Home Dept.
Harrison encountered Tarin at about 2:20 a.m. on June 17 when responding to a report of a suspicious man in the Jack in the Box located on 501 S. Telshor Blvd.
Police said Tarin was inside the restaurant and allegedly was carrying something underneath his jacket. After responding to the restaurant, Harrison began looking for Tarin.
Harrison located Tarin near the intersection of Lohman Avenue and Nacho Drive and drove in the parking lot of Office Max, where he was able to put a spotlight on Tarin.
Tarin responded by allegedly firing three rounds to the front side of Harrison unit. Four more rounds were fired as the officer’s vehicle fled the scene.
Harrison drove himself to Memorial Medical Center while informing other officers of the suspect’s location.
Harrison was struck near the neck by one of the bullets and injured by the shattered glass of the unit.
As the other officers arrived at the scene, Tarin was located near The Home Depot. The suspect was surrounded by officers from the Las Cruces Police Department, the Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office, NMSU Police Department and U.S. Border Patrol.
Multiple commands were given to Tarin, which he did not follow according to the press release. Officers discharged bean bag rounds, and Tarin fired at least one round towards the officers.
Tarin was pronounced dead at the scene. The Officer-involved Incident Taskforce is still investigating the incident.
On KTSM at 5, more information about Tarin’s history with the law.