TUCUMCARI ― Around 3:30 a.m., June 19, Tucumcari Police Department (TPD) responded to a hostage situation at 1309 South 7th St., in Tucumcari.
At the residence officers found Robert Roybal, 55, of Tucumcari holding a male victim hostage with a knife. Roybal had already stabbed the victim. When officers arrived Roybal had the knife up to the throat of the victim. TPD officers continued to attempt to convince Roybal to release the victim but he refused and the standoff ensued with Roybal holding the knife up to the victim’s neck.
A New Mexico State Police officer arrived and could see Roybal holding a knife to the victim’s throat through a bedroom window. The State Police officer fired one shot through the bed room window but did not strike anyone. Negotiations with Roybal continued with him still refusing to release the knife from the victim’s throat.
A Quay County Sheriff’s deputy arrived on scene and made entry into the house to aid in the negotiation efforts. At around 4:50 a.m. while officers continued negotiations Roybal began pushing the knife harder against the victim’s throat. As the victim cried out in pain, the Quay County Sheriff’s deputy fired a single shot, striking and killing Roybal. The victim was successfully rescued by the deputy and officers and taken to waiting paramedics for medical treatment.
Investigation of the shooting has been turned over to the New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau. At this time there is no further information available. The name of the victim will not be released. The names of the officers involved will not be released until the investigation has been completed, at which point a subsequent press release will be sent out.