NMSP Investigates OIS involving the Hobbs Police Department

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Hobbs, NM – On March 25, 2023, the New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau was requested to investigate an officer-involved shooting involving the Hobbs Police Department (HPD). 

 Investigations Bureau agents learned that at around 1:45 p.m., the Hobbs Police Department received a call about a fight involving several people. After the altercation, one suspect fled on foot, and the other subject, later identified as Christopher Rojas (17) of Hobbs, drove away in a stolen 2015 Dodge Charger. A HPD officer located the Dodge and attempted to initiate a traffic stop. Rojas drove towards the officer’s unit, crashing into a parked vehicle in the process.

 As the officer exited his unit, Rojas accelerated again, towards the officer. The officer discharged at least one round from his department issued sidearm, striking Rojas who then stopped, exited, and was taken into custody. While under arrest and in handcuffs, Rojas fled from the officers on foot and during a brief foot pursuit, another HPD officer was injured. Rojas was again taken into custody, and transported to an area hospital where he was treated for non-life threating injuries. He was then transferred over to the New Mexico State Police. The injured officer was treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital. 

 Rojas was booked into the Lea County Detention Center on previous charges from prior incidents.

They include:

Shooting at or from a motor vehicle

Probation Violation (nationwide no bond warrant)

Unlawful carrying of a handgun by a person under the age of 19

Resisting evading or obstructing an officer

 Additional charges will be filed upon further investigation and interviews. This case is being investigated by the New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau.

 The Hobbs Police officers involved will not be identified by the New Mexico State Police. For information on their duty status or administrative actions taken, please contact the Hobbs Police Department.

 New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau agents are working to independently determine the series of events leading to the shooting, including collecting evidence and conducting interviews. Throughout the process, investigative findings will be shared with the district attorney for review.

 The New Mexico State Police acts solely as a factfinder in its cases and does not determine whether an officer’s actions were justified in these types of matters. That decision rests with the district attorney’s office. This incident remains under investigation by the New Mexico State Police.