Las Cruces, NM – Authorities released bodycam video on Thursday of a Las Cruces police officer being dragged by an SUV after he tried to arrest a wanted fugitive (video below).
The incident occurred on Feb. 3 when Las Cruces Police Officer J. Herrera stopped a Chevy Tahoe that had been speeding and driving erratically in the 1900-block of N. Solano Drive and E. Madrid Avenue Apodaca Park, KRQE reported.
Officer Herrera said he called for backup when he saw that the driver – Joe Orozco – had a knife.
The officer ran the driver’s license and learned there was a felony warrant outstanding for Orozco’s arrest, KRQE reported.
So he returned to Orozco’s vehicle to arrest him.
Bodycam video showed Las Cruces Police Officer M. Carrera was right behind Officer Herrera when he approached the driver’s door.
“Turn off the car real quick,” Officer Herrera told Orozco. “Need for you to step out, brother.”
“All right then. Can I call my boss real quick?” Orozco asked.
“You have a warrant for your arrest,” Officer Herrera told him in the video.
“Why?” the driver asked as he started his vehicle.
“Let’s step out of the car,” Officer Herrera said pulled the driver’s door open and reached for Orozco, the video showed.
Bodycam video showed Orozco slammed his car into gear and hit the gas.
Officer Herrera’s bodycam filmed the steering wheel as he was dragged and then ultimately fell from the SUV.
Officer Carrera, who was standing beside Officer Herrera when Orozco took off, opened fire on the Chevy Tahoe, KRQE reported.
His bodycam captured a terrifying view of Officer Herrera being dragged, and then dropped, as the Tahoe fled the scene.
“As the vehicle fled and drug the officer, the other Las Cruces police officer on scene fired at least one round from his duty weapon at the vehicle,” Las Cruces Police Officer Jason Sauceda told reporters after the incident, KVIA reported.
Orozco fled after Officer Herrera fell from the car’s door and then abandoned the SUV nearby.
Officer Herrera was transported to the hospital and treated for a fractured leg, KVIA reported.
Officers found Orozco shortly thereafter and arrested him, KRQE reported.
That’s when police learned that there had been a woman in the backseat of the suspect vehicle, and she had been wounded by gunfire.
The woman was transported to the hospital and treated for her wounds, KRQE reported.
Orozco did not sustain any injuries during the incident, KVIA reported.
Prosecutors said he was facing a slew of felony charges that included a third-degree felony count of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon upon a peace officer, a fourth-degree felony count of aggravated fleeing a law enforcement officer, a fourth-degree felony count of receipt, transportation or possession of a firearm by a felon, and a misdemeanor count of resisting, evading or obstructing an officer.
District Court Judge Richard Jaquez ordered that Orozco be held without bond, KVIA reported.
Watch the incident unfold in the video below. WARNING – Graphic Content: