ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KTSM) – The family of the 19-year old University of New Mexico student who was killed Nov. 19 in a shooting that also injured New Mexico State basketball player Mike Peake is disputing the police account of what took place.
The family of the deceased Brandon Travis have started a petition on Change.org asking for justice for him. According to the petition description, the family cites a witness statement from one of the men involved, Jonathan Smith.
In Smith’s version of events as told to police in the arrest affidavit for Smith obtained by KTSM, Peake shot first, after Smith, Travis and another man conspired with a 17-year-old girl to lure Peake to campus in order to get revenge for a fight between Peake, Travis and others at the UNM-NMSU football game on Oct. 15.
In that same affidavit, police say video surveillance footage from UNM’s campus shows Travis firing first and Peake shooting back at him. The police report’s determination of the order of events was that Peake was hit in the leg with a baseball bat, then ran, at which time Travis shot at him. Peake then fired back at Travis, hitting him, according to the arrest affidavit.
KTSM has asked for the surveillance footage of the incident via an open records request in order to review it, but has not received it yet.
The family also disputes the police report’s detailing of how Peake got to campus. According to the affidavit, Travis allegedly asked a 17-year-old girl who had been talking with Peake to get him to come to campus, so Travis, Smith and another man could assault him. The family says that’s not true.
“The media has spun the narrative that Brandon used a 17-year-old female to lure Peake to campus when that’s not true at all. Peake came to UNM with the intention of bringing a firearm. Now that Brandon cannot speak for himself, we are here to help him,” the family wrote in the Change.org petition description.
Jonathan Smith and the 17-year-old girl both stated to police that she was used to lure Peake to campus by the three men, with the intention of assaulting him. She and Smith have both been arrested and charged with multiple crimes, including Aggravated Battery and Conspiracy.
With regards to the fight at the Oct. 15 UNM-NMSU football game between Peake, Travis and others that was the alleged precursor to Saturday’s shooting, the family says Travis received a black eye and that one of his friends sustained a dislocated jaw.
NMSU officials told the media on Wednesday that the school became aware of that fight 5-6 days after it occurred and that the student-athletes that could be identified in a video of it were disciplined. The school would not say to what extent they were disciplined; Peake played in all three of NMSU’s games before the Nov. 19 shooting.
The family also said they were not informed of Travis’s death by UNM and instead found out on social media. The family says it’s demanding an investigation by UNM into, “all individuals involved, the lack of security personnel on UNM campus and the lack of communication where UNM failed to properly inform,” the family.
The family has also started a GoFundMe page to help pay the costs for a funeral and to transport Travis’ remains back home to California for a proper burial.