After protesters called for more transparency in the recent deadly shooting of a black man by New Mexico state police, police have released a video of the encounter.
State police said they tried to pull over Rodney Applewhite in Los Lunas, but he led them on a chase. They said it was when they finally caught up to him and were trying to arrest him, he reached for a sergeant’s gun and another officer opened fire, KRQE reports.
On Nov. 19, State Police spotted a grey Chrysler being driven by Rodney Applewhite from South Bend, Indiana, going about 93 mph in a 45-mph zone on the Manzano Expressway in Los Lunas. The car pulls over, but seconds later, Applewhite takes off. Weaving in and out of traffic, nearly hitting a box truck head on while driving on the opposite side of the road.
Shortly after, officers found Applewhite outside of his vehicle kneeling with his hands up.
“I don’t know what I did,” said Applewhite.
“You were going 90,” said Officer Gene Gonzales.
Later in the incident, there was a scuffle between Applewhite and the second officer. Officer Gonzales fires two shots, mortally wounding Applewhite.
State Pollice said in a press release: “Fearing for the sergeant’s life, New Mexico State Police Officer Gene Gonzales drew his duty weapon and fired two rounds in an attempt to stop the attack on the sergeant.” Official video of the incident appears to show a gun grab.
Earlier that day, the Valencia County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call about a burglary in Belen. A woman said a man walked in asking if it was his house in Indiana. She replied “no,” and he left. Police said that man and his car matched Applewhite’s description.