Published: 2:15 pm, Sun. Sep. 24th, 2017Updated: 2:13 pm
The individual arrested last week in connection with a shooting incident that resulted in a local man’s death has been scheduled for preliminary examination in Artesia Magistrate Court.
Artesia Police Department officers and Artesia EMS were dispatched to the scene in the 900 block of Bullock Court at 9:03 p.m. Monday, Sept. 18, in reference to shots fired. Upon arrival, they learned a 34-year-old Artesia man was killed in the late evening hours at that address following an argument over allegedly stolen property.
The victim, identified as Ronald McLean, of Artesia, was shot once in the head and succumbed to his injuries just before 2 a.m. Tuesday.
The suspect, identified as 25-year-old Ruben Lopez of Artesia, was arrested Tuesday afternoon without incident.
According to the criminal complaint, after McLean was transported from the scene to Artesia General Hospital, officers made contact with his girlfriend, who advised the couple had been at home when a family friend, identified as Lopez, arrived and began yelling at the woman’s nephews.
The woman told police Lopez was upset about a dog her nephews had sold him Sunday and was claiming the dog was stolen. She said Lopez began threatening to take items from the home in return, at which point, the report states, Lopez pointed a gun at one of the nephews. When the woman informed him he would not be taking any property from her home, he allegedly turned the gun on her.
At that time, the woman said, McLean attempted to intervene. She says Lopez pushed McLean, causing him to fall backward, then shot him. Witnesses present at the time confirmed that sequence of events.
Lopez was subsequently charged with an open count of murder in the first degree and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He will appear for preliminary examination at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 4.
At the time of last week’s shooting, Lopez was out on probation in connection with another shooting that took place Feb. 2, 2015, in Artesia. The victim in that incident survived, and Lopez was charged with aggravated battery with a firearm.