In a strange turn of events in Albuquerque, multiple metro-area lawmakers and local officials’ homes and places of business were shot up in drive-by shootings. The shootings mysteriously didn’t hit a single person, which has raised questions.
The politicians who were apparently targeted included outgoing Bernalillo County Commissioner Debbie O’Malley, Commissioner Adriann Barboa, and two legislators. Sen. Linda Lopez and newly appointed Sen. Antonio “Moe” Maestas were apparently targeted, although gunshots were heard near Maestas’ office, not his home.
The Albuquerque Police Department (APD) is still investigating the cause of the shots, but APD Chief Harold Medina said, “The evidence will lead us. … The investigation hopefully will determine what’s related and what’s not related,” Medina said during a news conference Thursday afternoon. “But we want to assure everybody that we are taking this seriously,” according to the Albuquerque Journal.
The first shooting happened on December 4, 2022, at Barboa’s residence around 4:41 p.m., which is strange because it was still light outside when it happened. On December 11, someone fired at O’Malley’s home, while Lopez’s home was shot at around midnight on Tuesday.
O’Malley said that her home is not easily accessible, and that is why she believes she was targeted. “Somebody wanted to hit this house,” she commented.
The Journal noted that on Thursday, “city ShotSpotter technology detected three shots fired in the vicinity of a Downtown building where Maestas has an office. Police said they found no damage to the building. Maestas did not respond to a Journal message Thursday afternoon seeking comment.”
One connection all the lawmakers have is that they all were involved in one way or another in the appointment of Maestas to the state Senate in November, while his former seat in the state House garnered controversy from many on the left regarding who should fill it. It ultimately led to educator Marsella Duarte holding the seat until the end of the year. Another person will have to be appointed to fill the vacancy for the new term beginning January 17, 2022.