Newsweek reports one person has been shot during a clash between people attempting to topple a statue of a Spanish conqueror in Albuquerque and members of an armed right-wing militia group.
The victim is in a critical but stable condition following the demonstration at the statue of Juan de Oñate outside the Albuquerque Museum on Monday.
Video taken from the scene shows a group of people attempting to pull down the statue while chanting “tear it down” before several gunshots are fired.
According to the Albuquerque Journal, the shooting occurred after several protesters descended on one man wearing a blue T-shirt who had been pushing and confronting those attempting to topple the statue.
After being forced onto the street, the man in the blue shirt allegedly deployed pepper spray before pulling out a gun and firing, hitting at least one person.
Footage posted on Twitter shows a man in a blue shirt confronting protesters prior to the shooting.
A second video then appears to show armed men in military-style clothing—believed to be members of the New Mexico Civil Guard militia group who were there to protect the statue—surrounding the man on the ground.
Several members of the militia group who were allegedly involved in the violence were then taken into custody by the Albuquerque Police Department. The FBI is assisting APD violent crime investigators as they continue to interview individuals over the incident.
Police have not released details about any of the detained suspects in connection to the shooting.
APD Chief Michael Geier said in a statement: “We are receiving reports about vigilante groups possibly instigating this violence.
“If this is true will be holding them accountable to the fullest extent of the law, including federal hate group designation and prosecution.”
Video of the shooter before the shooting; he is the guy in the blue shirt who can be seen shoving female protesters. He was an instigator. Moments before the shooting he pepper sprayed people, was called out for it & shot someone who tried to detain him for using the pepper spray pic.twitter.com/G88rsUIF5m
— Brian Mannal (@BrianMannal) June 16, 2020
— Megan Abundis (@meganrabundis) June 16, 2020