Man charged with murder after shooting in Las Cruces

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – A 22-year-old man has been charged with murder and tampering of evidence after shooting and killing a man Wednesday morning, April 3 in Las Cruces, according to the Las Cruces Police Department (LCPD).

Man in custody after shooting near Lynn Middle School in Las Cruces

LCPD says that shortly after 6 a.m. Wednesday, officers responded to the report of a shooting at the 2100 block of Lester Ave., just south of Lynn Middle School.

Officers arrived to find Elijah Daniel Venegas, 24, suffering from at least one gunshot wound. He was taken to a local hospital where he died from his injuries, according to LCPD.

LCPD says that the suspect shooter fled the area west on Lester Ave. and then north towards Lynn Middle School.

Officers located the suspect, later identified as Bernardo Hernandez Jr., 22, and took him into custody on the northeast side of the middle school campus, according to LCPD.

Investigators believe Venegas and his girlfriend, who were both staying at a home on Lester Ave., got into an argument.

LCPD says early Wednesday morning, the girlfriend called Hernandez and asked for a ride. When Hernandez arrived at the home, he and Venegas got into an argument that became physical.

At some point Hernandez exited the vehicle, retrieved a firearm and discharged multiple rounds towards Venegas.

After the shooting, Hernandez ran from the area and discarded the evidence, including the firearm, on the exterior grounds of Lynn Middle School, according to LCPD.

“Because Hernandez traversed through the school grounds, and left behind evidence, police requested that Lynn Middle School be placed on a temporary lockdown that prevented students from attending classes there on Wednesday,” said LCPD.

Additionally, Hernandez was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he is initially being held without bond.

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