New Mexico State Police Investigate Homicide and Subsequent OIS Involving the Artesia Police Department

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For Immediate Release
October 13, 2023


Artesia, NM – On October 12, 2023, at around 9:30 a.m. the New Mexico State Police Investigation Bureau was requested by the Artesia Police Department (APD) to investigate a homicide and subsequent Officer Involved Shooting (OIS) at the Artesia Public Safety Complex located at 3300 West Main Street in Artesia. The OIS involved an APD officer.


State Police agents learned that just after 9:00 a.m. there was a dispute between two males in the parking lot of the Artesia Public Safety Complex. During the confrontation, one of the men presented a firearm and fired multiple rounds, striking and killing the other man who was identified as Mark Owen Rommel (42), of Artesia. He was pronounced deceased on scene by the Office of the Medical Investigator. Agents are still gathering facts related to the homicide and are collaborating with the 5th Judicial District Attorney’s Office on a decision to file charges, if any, against the shooter.


APD officers were in the immediate area, and at least one APD officer fired at least one round, striking the shooter. The shooter was later airlifted to an area hospital for treatment of injuries that did not appear to be life-threatening.


For the identity, duty status, and administrative actions taken on the officer please reach out to APD. 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 and consideration.


The New Mexico State Police acts solely as factfinders in its cases and does not determine whether the actions of an officer 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.