Police investigate shooting death in Mora

Police investigate shooting death in Mora

From the Las Vegas Optic

A gunshot meant for a stray dog instead struck and killed a Mora County man, according to New Mexico State Police.

State Police investigators responded to a property on State Road 94 near Ledoux around 8 a.m. on Aug. 8. They’d been called to the rural property to investigate the death of Monico Apodaca, 70, who died from at least one gunshot wound, police said.

Lt. Mark Soriano, an NMSP spokesman, told the Optic that family members and emergency medical personnel attempted to save Apodaca’s life, but he was pronounced dead at the scene of the shooting.

According to Soriano, a stray dog was attacking some chickens in the family’s coop and at least one person fired shots at the dog. Investigators collected evidence that suggests rounds were fired from a rifle and a handgun. Police have not said how many shots were fired, but at least one round struck Apodaca.

“(He) was fatally struck by a projectile during the incident,” Soriano said.

Apodaca was pronounced dead by the Office of the Medical Investigator, and his body was transported to Albuquerque for an autopsy.

The shooting has not been ruled an accident, and Soriano said it is still being investigated. No one has been arrested or charged as of this writing, and police are also awaiting results of the autopsy.

“At the completion of the investigation, all the reports and evidence will be forwarded to the Fourth Judicial District Attorney’s office,” Soriano said. “They will review the case and determine the course of action.”