Las Cruces police search for people involved in deadly gun battle

Las Cruces police investigate Monday, April 23, 2018 shooting on Athenian Way where Jovon Solomon, 17, died. (Credit: KFOX14/CBS4)

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (CBS-4 Local) — A teenage boy who was involved in a gun battle died after he was shot Monday evening in Las Cruces, police said.

Jovon Solomon, 17, was airlifted to University Medical Center in El Paso with gunshot wounds, police said.

“We heard a few, like three, four, five (gunshots). It was a bunch of them, you know, and it just happened so fast. We didn’t expect it to be something like this,” neighbor Erika Lazos said.

Police believe Solomon was a passenger in an Acura that was involved in a pursuit with a dark-colored sedan.

The pursuit reportedly happened along Athenian Way, just south of Foothills Road, before 7 p.m.

Police said the investigation revealed that gunshots were fired during the chase. Investigators think occupants in both vehicles were shooting at each other.

Investigators have not said what sparked the pursuit.

Solomon died at UMC of gunshot wounds to his neck and chest.

No arrests have been made.

“I found out this morning from my friend that a 17-year-old had been shot, which is super discomforting to me because I’m not much older than that, so, in reality, that could have been me or one of my roommates,” neighbor Karly Seely said.

The principal of Las Montanas Charter School confirmed Solomon was a junior at the school.

The Las Cruces Public School District provided grief counselors, who are at the school to meet with students affected by the incident, said the principal said.

Solomon’s math teacher said Solomon was kind and caring to everyone he met, and he worked hard to make sure those around him felt special.

Police are asking anyone who has information about the dark-colored sedan involved in the shooting to call them at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be submitted through the Las Cruces Crime Stoppers app. The app, “P3 TIPS” can be found on Google Play or iTunes. Those who provide tips through Crime Stoppers can remain completely anonymous.

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