Police have arrested the man suspected in Wednesday’s armed robbery and shooting that critically injured a 16-year-old boy near the Casa Bandera Apartments.
Samuel L. “Sammy” Pinon, 18, of the 3600 block of Sienna Avenue, is charged with one second-degree felony count of armed robbery.
About 2:40 p.m. Wednesday, June 24, Las Cruces police were dispatched to the report of a shooting near the Casa Bandera Apartments at 855 E. University Ave. Officers arrived to learn one victim, a 16-year-old boy, had been transported by private vehicle to Memorial Medical Center. The victim, who was suffering from at least one gunshot wound, was then airlifted to University Medical Center of El Paso in critical but stable condition.
Investigators learned that Pinon and the 16-year-old boy used the social media app Snapchat to discuss the sale of marijuana. Pinon agreed to meet the teenager at the apartment complex but, apparently, became uneasy with the transaction.
Investigators learned Pinon displayed a semiautomatic handgun, wrestled the bag of marijuana away from the victim and took off on foot through the apartment complex. The victim and two friends pursued Pinon and got into another altercation with him. During the second altercation, Pinon allegedly fired at least one round that struck the 16-year-old. Pinon, again, fled on foot while the gunshot victim’s friends drove the 16-year-old to MMC.
Investigators determined Pinon’s identity through his Snapchat and Facebook accounts. He was taken into custody late Wednesday evening and charged with the crime. The incident remains under investigation. Additional charges are possible.
Pinon was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he is initially being held without bond.