Officers, agents cleared in Las Cruces Home Depot parking lot shooting that killed suspect


LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) – Various members of law enforcement were cleared in a June shooting at a Las Cruces Home Depot parking lot, which left one suspect dead.

Francisco “Paco” Tarin was killed on June 17 in a shootout with members of the Las Cruces Police Department, Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Border Patrol and New Mexico State Police.

A Sept. 5 letter from Dona Ana County District Attorney Mark D’Antonio stated that no action would be taken against the following officers and agents:

  • Las Cruces Police Department: Charli Velasco, David Ramirez, Francis Whitten, Eduardo Salinas, Sgt. Joshua Savage and Sgt. Jonathan Boehne.
  • Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office: Deputy Jesus Ortegon and Sgt. Scott Bayles.
  • U.S. Border Patrol: Agents Travis Gulledge and Cheatum Casey.
  • New Mexico State Police: Officer Jaime Dominguez.

Officer Anthony Harrison, who was also cleared of any wrongdoing, responded to a call of a suspicious man who had threatened Jack in the Box employees at about 2:20 a.m.

Courtesy Las Cruces Police Department.

Harrison found the man, who turned out to be Tarin at the intersection of Lohman Avenue and Nacho Drive. As he approached, Tarin shot a total of seven rounds at Harrison’s unit.

Harrison was hit and drove himself to Memorial Medical Center as he called for backup.

Tarin was located by a group of officers, deputies and agents in the Home Depot parking lot. Tarin refused orders to surrender and was hit with a non-lethal bean bag round before returning fire. Law enforcement returned fire and killed Tarin.

The shooting was investigated by the Officer-Involved Incident Task Force and sent to the district attorney’s office for review.

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