Defeated GOP Candidate Arrested In Shootings Targeting Democratic Officials’ Homes
A defeated Republican candidate for the House District 14 seat in the South Valley, New Mexico, was arrested in connection with shootings at his opponent’s home, and the homes of other local Democratic politicians, The Albuquerque Journal reported Monday.
Citing police chief Harold Medina, the news outlet reported that SWAT officers took Solomon Pena, 39, into custody Monday afternoon after a standoff in Southwest Albuquerque.
Prior to the arrest officers could be heard commanding “Solomon Pena please come out with your hands up, we have the place surrounded.”
Pena lost by more than 3,600 votes to incumbent Democrat Rep. Miguel P. Garcia in the November election.
In frequent postings on his Twitter account, Pena, 39, has maintained that he didn’t lose and that the election was “rigged.”
“Pena, an unsuccessful legislative candidate in the 2022 election, is accused of conspiring with, and paying four other men to shoot at the homes of two county commissioners and two state legislators,” Medina said.
APD had been investigating six shootings from Dec. 4 through Jan. 5 where bullets were fired into Democratic elected officials’ homes or near others’ offices.
As noted by the AJC, On Dec. 4 eight shots were fired into County Commissioner Adriann Barboa’s Southeast Albuquerque home. On Dec. 11 more than 12 bullets hit County Commissioner Debbie O’Malley’s North Valley home. Sometime in early December, state Rep. Javier Martinez’s home was shot up, although the damage was not found until after the investigation into the other shootings was announced. On Jan. 3, shots rang out at state Rep. Linda Lopez’s home and three bullets went through her daughter’s bedroom as the 10-year-old slept.
Watch the video of the arrest below.
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