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Friday's Heroes: First Responders Save Gunshot Victim's Life

AAS, AFD, APD and UNMH save the life of man shot by intruder

July 17, 2015

ALBUQUERQUE—Today, Mayor Richard J. Berry honored first responders from Albuquerque Fire Department (AFD), Albuquerque Police Department (APD) and Albuquerque Ambulance Service (AAS) who responded to a shooting call just before midnight on June 30, 2015.  The incident happened after an armed robber forced his way into the motel room of two patrons in an attempted robbery. The quick actions of these first responders may have well saved the life of Charles de Caro.

Charles de Caro and his wife Lynne Russell stopped at an Albuquerque motel late on June 30 after a long day of driving across the country.  De Caro jumped into the shower while Russell made trips to and from her car to unpack.  On her last trip, a man followed Russell and forced her into the motel room at gunpoint. After hearing the commotion, de Caro jumped out of the shower and found a man in his room demanding laptops and money.  Russell grabbed her purse, which had a pistol in it, and gave it to her husband. She instructed her husband to look through it for anything of value to give to the robber. The altercation lasted for seven minutes before the perpetrator lost patience and opened fire, striking de Caro several times. Despite being hit, de Caro was able to return fire hitting the perpetrator. The attempted robber fled the room but due to his injuries collapsed outside shortly after.

It was at this point that officers were dispatched to the motel in response to the shooting. APD, AFD and AAS arrived on scene where they found the perpetrator lying unconscious in the parking lot. Rescue workers rushed him to the hospital where he later passed away. Officers then found de Caro in the motel room in critical condition. AAS was able to successfully treat de Caro en route to University of New Mexico Hospital (UNMH). UNMH’s professional and skilled team quickly tended to de Caro’s injuries. Thanks to everyone’s effort he is now on the way to making a successful recovery.

The coordinated effort between AFD, APD and AAS to quickly contain the crime scene and began an investigation demonstrating an exceptional collaborative effort. The situation was classified as a violent crime call-out and detectives worked around the clock to figure out what had happened. APD identified the perpetrator as Tomorio Walton and discovered he had been working with an accomplice who fled the scene just before first responders made it on site.  APD later identified and issued a warrant for Walton’s accomplice, Skyy Durrell Barrs, and detectives with the Special Investigations Division apprehended Barrs on July 9th.

Thanks to these Friday’s Heroes, Charles de Caro survived this event.

Fridays Heroes:

APD: Det. Jodi Gonterman, Lt. Todd Mock, & Officer Jesse Martinez

AFD: Engine 17: Lt. Ryan Perry, FF Mario Jaramillo, FF David Vargas, & FF Diego Padilla

Rescue 7: Lt. Clinton Anderson, Firefighter Lindsey Sheffield

Rescue 17: Captain Adam Gutierrez, Driver Mark Jaquez

AAS: Paramedic Julian Sierra, EMT Misty Vallejos

UNMH: Dr. Jon Marinaro (Director of UNM Center for Surgical Critical Care Medicine) , Dr. Stephen Lu (Trauma Medical Director), Dr. Mohamad Ali Rana (Surgeon), Mike Caron (Nurse in the Recovery Unit), Sheena Ferguson (UNMH Chief Nursing Officer), Dr. David Hoang (Resident Medical Physician)