‘We’re living in fear’: Neighborhood on edge after Las Cruces shooting


LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) — A Las Cruces neighborhood is on edge after a shooting on Saturday.

The shooting was just one of four that happened in Las Cruces over the weekend, this one on Nevada Avenue and Almendra Street.

“We’re living in fear,” said Samantha Vargas, showing KTSM 9 News damage on her patio that appears to be from a bullet. She said the shooting happened when she was having a get-together at her house.

A neighbor captured a video of the shooting on a surveillance camera and about two dozen gunshots can be heard.

“They were shooting at our house, my kids. It was just a party full of people — kids — and they were shooting into the crowd,” said Samantha Vargas.

Vargas said she, along with other members in the neighborhood, had received threatening messages from one household in the area prior to Saturday’s shooting.

The neighbors say they have had issues with one household in the area and had a feeling something like the shooting would happen.

“I feel threatened. I feel on edge. I feel uneasy — my kids can’t even have a normal childhood,” said Jessica Sosa, who lives in the neighborhood.

Sosa said they have told police about the threatening messages and hope that more is done following the shooting investigation.

“Letting them know, ‘hey, this guy’s a threat. You know these threats are not only verbal — he’s planning to do something and all they kept saying is ‘keep making reports, keep making reports,'” said Sosa.

Dan Trujillo, a spokesperson for the Las Cruces Police Department, said it’s important to let police know what is happening and if you think something like a shooting is going to happen.

“Get an officer out there and review. Get a copy of that threatening message and there’s a possibility we can do something,” said Trujillo. “I don’t want to speculate too much on this particular incident, because I don’t have the details, but again, it’s something that whoever’s receiving this message, whoever feels threatened needs to call us immediately so we can go and investigate.”

He said if it’s an emergency, call 911. And if you want to make a report or let police know of any threats, you can call (575) 526-0795.

Trujillo said the investigation is still happening and information and details could change, but shared what information police have learned so far about the Nevada and Almendra shooting.

“What we do know is there was some type of dispute between two different parties, possibly neighbors. That dispute led to words being exchanged and then gunfire,” said Trujillo. “As a result of that gunfire, two people were injured and those two people were transported to local hospitals. Both of them from what we understand received non-life-threatening injuries.”

Trujillo said if anyone has any information about any of the shootings that took place in Las Cruces on Saturday and Sunday to call the non-emergency number.

“On Saturday we had one. On Sunday, we had three different shootings and it’s very unusual to have that many and it’s very frustrating for us because it, obviously, there are four different investigations that are ongoing and our manpower is limited. But more importantly, we don’t want to see this in our community,” said Trujillo.

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