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State Police release names of officers involved in shooting

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New Mexico State Police have released the names of two Roswell police officers and one Chaves County sheriff’s deputy who were involved in a fatal shooting last month.

A press release Friday from the New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau states that Roswell Police officers Danny Flott and Abrem Atencio, along with Chaves County Sheriff’s Deputy Samuel Lueras, each fired at 22-year-old Victor Ivan  Barron, who was killed during the encounter with law enforcement.

The release states that Atencio has been with the Roswell Police Department for three years. Flott, who has been with the department six months, also has two years of prior law enforcement experience with another agency. Lueras, who has been with the Sheriff’s Office for four months, also has seven and a half years of prior law enforcement experience.

Barron was shot to death on the night of April 15 outside the J.P. Stone Community Bank at the intersection of North Main and 19th streets, following a vehicle chase. According to the press release, officers were pursing Barron on foot when he allegedly turned and all three saw him point a handgun at Flott’s face while standing at close range.

“Fearing for their lives and that of Officer Flott, all three officers discharged at least one round from their duty-issued firearms. Barron was struck by the officers’ gunfire,” the press release states.

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Emergency aid was then administered to Barron on the scene and he was transported to Eastern New Mexico Medical Center for treatment, where he subsequently died from his wounds. No officers or deputies were injured.

Barron allegedly led law enforcement on a pursuit that began at 11:26 p.m. when a sergeant with the Sheriff’s Office tried to conduct a traffic stop on a white Ford pickup truck in the area of Mathews and South Main streets that had been reported stolen. When the driver, later identified as Barron, did not pull over, a pursuit was initiated and the Sheriff’s Office requested assistance from RPD.

The chase proceeded north. Tire deflation devices eventually were deployed by RPD in the area of Union Avenue and Country Club Road. Barron reached Main Street and headed south where another tire deflation device was deployed at the intersection of North Main and 19th streets. The suspect avoided the tire deflation device by driving into the parking lot of the bank, where he abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot.

The investigation into the incident remains ongoing and upon its completion State Police will send the case to an assigned district attorney’s office for review.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or breakingnews@rdrnews.com.