Homeowner is fatally shot by Farmington police when officers went to the wrong address

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The Farmington Police Department released body camera footage from the deadly shooting at the wrong address earlier in April.

FPD officers were dispatched to 5308 Valley View Ave for a domestic violence call. However, New Mexico State Police, who are investigating the fatal shooting, said FPD went to 5305 Valley View Ave.

Farmington's officers were heard expressing confusion over whether they were at the correct address moments before gunshots were fired from FPD.

"Is it 43 or, 5308. It's not 5308?" An officer said. "That's what it said right there, right? Can you 10-9 the address... shots fired, shots fired."

FPD police chief Steve Hebbe addressed the shooting at a press conference Friday afternoon. Hebbe spoke on how often responding units go to the incorrect address.

"I think that it happens, I think that you can go to the wrong address sometimes," Hebbe said. "I can't tell you what happened in this case. You know, that really is something that the officers are going to have to talk with the state police about. The results of it are terrible, but I will tell you that we do go to the wrong addresses from time to time."

Hebbe confirmed the responding officers names will not be released, but all three did discharge their weapons>

New Mexico State police are investigating the shooting that left homeowner Robert Dotson, 52, dead at the scene. Dotson answered the door with a firearm in his hand.

"You see him opening the door with his left hand. In his right hand is the gun. And as he pushes the door open, then he comes together and both hands appear to grip the weapon and are pointed at one of the officers," said Hebbe.

Once the door opens, none of the officers identify themselves again, until after shots are fired, when Dotson's wife comes downstairs.

" I think what happens is they hear a noise, which later on in one of the bodycams, the officer says he heard the gun rack, that somebody racked the gun just before it opens, and they start to back up," said Hebbe. "The door opens and he comes out. The first officer says, 'Hey, somebody else says, let me see your hands or put your hands up. I think... my guess is they're so startled by how fast it occurs that they don't say Farmington police again. But that's really that's just speculation on my part."

In the body camera video, Dotson's wife is heard screaming and points a gun out the door and shoots in the direction of officers. Investigators said, at the time, she did not know law enforcement was at her home and when she did, she put down the weapon.

No FPD officers or Dotson's were injured in the shooting.

Two of the officers have been with FPD for five years. The third has been with the department for three years, but has only been in uniform for nine months.

All of them are on paid administrative leave pending the investigation.

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