Police bodycam footage shows officers confronting New Mexico gunman
▶ Watch Video: Police bodycam video released in New Mexico shooting
Farmington, New Mexico — Authorities on Thursday released police body camera footage that captured officers confronting an 18-year-old gunman who went on a 10-minute shooting rampage in the small northwest New Mexico city of Farmington on Monday, leaving three elderly women dead and at least six other people wounded, including two officers. The gunman was fatally shot by police.
The footage showed the chaos as Farmington police and other law enforcement officers rushed to the area and confronted the gunman, who authorities said fired more than 140 rounds from an AR-15 rifle, one of three weapons he used during the attack, including two handguns.
The video captured officers reacting after Farmington police Sgt. Rachel Discenza was shot in the pelvis as she tried to run for cover.
“You see Sgt. Discenza, even after she’s shot, scrambling to get back up, get back into the fight, isn’t able to do that,” Farmington Police Chief Steve Hebbe said in a news conference Thursday.
A New Mexico State Police officer was also shot during the response.
The video showed officers helping Discenza within seconds and opening fire on the gunman, with one officer yelling, “Subject is down! Cease fire, cease fire!”
Officers are then seen swarming the wounded suspect on the ground and handcuffing him.
“It sounds like you’re watching Afghanistan or Iraq,” Hebbe said.
Farmington police said the suspect, identified as Farmington High School student Beau Wilson, wore body armor during the attack, and a handwritten note was found on his body. An arsenal of weapons was also discovered at his home.
At least seven houses and 16 vehicles were struck by gunfire, San Juan County Sheriff’s Capt. Kevin Burns said Wednesday.
Surveillance video from a nearby home showed victims driving unknowingly into the line of fire, with others speeding in reverse to safety as bullets hit their cars and houses.
The suspect purchased the AR-15 legally last November, about a month after he turned 18, police said, while the two handguns he obtained from family members.
On Wednesday night, the small community of Farmington held a vigil for the three women killed in the shooting, identified as 97-year-old Gwendolyn Schofield, her 73-year-old daughter Melody Ivie, and 79-year-old Shirley Voita.
“Just three pillars of our community, and it’s such a tragedy,” New Mexico state Rep. Mark Duncan told CBS News Thursday.
Duncan said he knew the victims, disclosing that Ivie ran a daycare in the community for 40 years.
“She’s impacted hundreds of lives,” Duncan said. “She taught my two youngest daughters, and then she’s taught all of our grandkids who were old enough to go. And we’ve had many, many people reach out to us and just talk to us about the impact that she’s had on their life, on their children’s life.”