New Mexico officer shot, killed during traffic stop; 3 suspects - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

New Mexico officer shot, killed during traffic stop; 3 suspects in custody

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(AP) -

Three suspects were in custody Saturday after investigators said one of them shot a New Mexico police officer in the neck during a traffic stop, killing him, before trying to speed away.

Two of the suspects have criminal records and were wanted in a shooting last month that killed a 62-year-old man in Ohio, The Chillicothe Gazette reported.

After Friday's shooting, crews airlifted Hatch, N.M. Police Officer Jose Chavez to a hospital in El Paso, Texas where he died, according to officials.

The 33-year-old officer was a two-year veteran of the department. He had a wife and two children, KVIA reported.

The officer had just arrived at the traffic stop in Dona Ana County Friday afternoon when a passenger got out of the vehicle and fired shots, police said.

The three suspects, all men, sped off in a car at speeds topping 100 miles per hour, county sheriff's officials said.

They got off I-25 at a rest stop and carjacked a Chevrolet Cruze, shooting the driver, Dona Ana County Sheriff’s spokesperson Kelly Jameson told reporters.

More law enforcement officers joined the pursuit, deploying a device to deflate the car's tires. The chase finally ended at a home near I-85 when the driver crashed into a pile of wood, KFOX 14 reported.

One of the suspects suffered a gunshot wound to the right thigh, investigators added. They said the carjacking victim was recovering in a hospital.

The Ross County Sheriff's Office in Ohio confirmed they received word from New Mexico officials that James Nelson II, 36, and Jesse Hanes, 38, were taken into custody on murder warrants out of Ross County, the Gazette reported.

They were wanted in the July shooting of 62-year-old Theodore Timmons in his home in Londonderry, Ohio, according to the paper. A motive was unclear.

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