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NMSP investigate police gunfire in Artesia

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The New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau is investigating the Monday shooting of an Artesia man by a Pecos Valley Drug Task Force agent.

Ronnie Dunnavant, 47, of Artesia, who was wanted on outstanding warrants for aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and criminal damage to property was shot at 8:30 p.m. at 1922 Villia St., Artesia, by an agent, according to a release from New Mexico State Police.

Members of the task force were attempting to apprehend Dunnavant on outstanding warrants for aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and criminal damage to a property.

Dunnavant at the time was driving a 2016 white Ford which the task force had spotted parked at the Villa Street address, the press release states.

Agents initiated a stop, and as they approached the vehicle, Dunnavant put the vehicle in reverse.

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The release states Agent Gilbert Gomez of the Eddy County Sheriff’s Department then fired a single shot at Dunnavant’s vehicle’s tires. Dunnavant was unharmed by the gunfire, then fled the vehicle.

He then barricaded himself inside a residence in the 200 block of South 40th Street in Artesia. An Eddy County Sheriff’s Department negotiator was later able to make contact at the location with Dunnavant who peacefully surrendered, the press release states.

Gomez has been employed with the Eddy County Sheriff’s Department for four years.

The release states the investigation into the shooting by the New Mexico State Police remains active and open.

Upon completion of the investigation by NMSP, the case will then be forwarded to an assigned district attorney’s office for review, according to the release.