EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) - A 21-year-old northern New Mexico man has been charged with five counts of murder after police say he was involved in a killing spree that resulted in the death of his mom, step-dad and brother.
Damian Herrera, 21, was charged Thursday after a massive manhunt that spanned all of northern New Mexico and into Colorado. The Rio Arriba County Sheriff's Department were initially dispatched to a shooting in La Madera, NM around 3:30 p.m. Thursday afternoon. When they arrived, they found Maria Rosita Gallegos, 49, Max Trujillo Sr., and Brendan Herrera, 20, were all dead from gunshot wounds.
Authorities learned that Damian Herrera had allegedly gotten into a domestic dispute with his family members shortly before the shooting and had fled the scene .
Two hours later, around 5:45 p.m. another 911 call came into dispatch about 35 miles away in Tres Piedras, NM in Taos County regarding another shooting. When investigators arrived, they learned that Herrera had allegedly shot and killed Michael Kyte, 61. After she shooting, Herrera allegedly stole his Chevrolet pickup and drove north to Antonito, Colorado.
He continued traveling through Colorado and back into New Mexico eventually ending up in Abiquiu, NM.
In Abiquiu, Herrera stopped at the Bode's General store where he allegedly shot and killed Manuel Serrano, 59, of Youngsville, NM around 8:15 p.m.
Rio Arriba County Sheriff's Department Deputies spotted the stolen pickup and began a chase that ended when Herrera allegedly crashed into a tree while trying to avoid hitting a NMSP car head-on around 8:30 p.m.
After the crash, Herrera got out of the truck and allegedly ran toward the deputies where he allegedly attempted to grab the deputy's gun. The gun went off during the fight, but no one was injured. Eventually another deputy was able to taser Herrera and arrest him.
The murders are now part of a multi-agency investigation including the New Mexico Station Police Investigations Bureau and the Rio Arriba County Sheriff's Department. There are several witnesses and multiple crime scenes that are being processed.
NMSP has asked for assistance from the Albuquerque Police Department for help processing the five separate crime scenes.
Herrera is in custody in the Rio Arriba County Detention Center on five open counts of murder.