Officer Murdered By Trespassing Suspect

( – A police officer from the Las Cruces Police Department in New Mexico died after being stabbed by a man while responding to a trespassing call at a local business. Patrol officer Jonah Hernandez, 35, arrived at the location at around 5 p.m. on February 11 and was attacked and stabbed by a man with a large kitchen knife.

A witness to the attack retrieved a firearm from his vehicle and shot the man, who died at the scene. The witness then called for help on Hernandez’s radio. The perpetrator was later identified as 29-year-old Armando Silva. According to Las Cruces Police Chief Jeremy Story, Silva was previously “convicted of serious violent crimes,” which landed him in prison. He also had a history of mental illness.

Court records revealed that Silva pleaded guilty to domestic violence charges in 2017 and was sentenced to spend three years in prison. However, in 2019, he removed his GPS bracelet and was also caught with drugs. He violated the terms of his probation and parole on several occasions, according to Story. The chief said that the department was not recommending any charges against the witness who shot and killed Silva. However, local prosecutors would make the final call.

Hernandez was the first on-duty officer to die at the Las Cruces Police Department since it was formed 96 years ago. The city is one of the largest in New Mexico and was established in 1928. Hernandez previously lived in El Paso, Texas, but worked for the Las Cruces Police Department for two years. His body was escorted to El Paso by several law enforcement agencies in the state on February 12. Hernandez left behind his wife, two sons, his parents, and two siblings, according to the department. New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham said she was “horrified to hear of the murder of a young officer” in the city. She ordered all New Mexico state flags to be lowered to half-staff until the sun sets on February 19.

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