LAS CRUCES, NM (KTSM) – Shoplifting led to a pursuit ending in an officer involved shooting in Las Cruces on Wednesday.

The Las Cruces Police Department says two men shoplifted an air conditioning unit worth around $500 from the Lowes Home Improvement located at 3200 N Main Street.

The two men were confronted by employees and that’s when police say one of the men pulled out what appeared to be a handgun and pointed it at them.

Police say the men then fled in a maroon SUV and officers located the vehicle approximately two minuets later at the area of Madrid and Sexton but the attempt failed and the suspects led police on a chase.

“The suspects fled from the officers leading them on a lengthy pursuit through residential areas, parking lots and major throughway with the vehicle fleeing at high rates of speed and driving into oncoming traffic, creating an extremely dangerous condition for everyone involved,” said Las Cruces Chief of Police, Miguel Dominguez.

Officers eventually performed a pit maneuver near the 700 block of Telshor Blvd and that’s where police say at least one round was fired.

Video shared with KTSM 9 News from a viewer shows police performing the pit maneuver and the SUV trying to drive away then running into a poll. Then the video shows a person get out the vehicle and begin running before he falls down as officers approach on foot.

“The driver of the vehicle Joshua Lopez received medical attention on the scene and was transported to the hospital where he is expected to recover,” said Dominguez.

According to LCPD driver received at least one gunshot wound.

Myles Luciano – Courtesy Las Cruces Police Department

Dominguez says the driver of the car is pending charges and the passenger Myles Luciano was arrested and charged with three counts of aggravated assault, felony shoplifting, and conspiracy to commit shoplifting from the incident at Lowes and more charges are pending.

Police say no officers were injured during the incident.

“The suspects had several opportunities to pull over and comply with officers but continued to flee. I don’t have to explain to you how dangerous a vehicle pursuit is. Not only for the officers that are involved but all of our citizens pedestrians people on bikes this incident was extremely dangerous and volatile and lasted for quit some time. Our officers were still able to stay with the vehicle and bring these two violent suspects into custody” said Dominguez.

A task force that includes investigators from the New Mexico State Police, the Las Cruces Police Department, Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Office, and New Mexico State University Police are continuing to investigate the incident.

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