Homicide

Suburban Albuquerque police officer shot and killed in traffic stop; 1 person in custody

  • A man leaves flowers on Tuesday, May 26, 2015 near the site where authorities say a Rio Rancho police officer was shot late Monday during a traffic stop in the Albuquerque, New Mexico, suburb. Police say the officer later died at a hospital. A person believed to be involved in the shooting was taken into custody in the Albuquerque area but authorities are still searching for another suspect. (AP Photo/Russell Contreras)

    A man leaves flowers on Tuesday, May 26, 2015 near the site where authorities say a Rio Rancho police officer was shot late Monday during a traffic stop in the Albuquerque, New Mexico, suburb. Police say the officer later died at a hospital. A person believed to be involved in the shooting was taken into custody in the Albuquerque area but authorities are still searching for another suspect. (AP Photo/Russell Contreras)  (The Associated Press)

  • Investigators mark evidence Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at the site where authorities say a Rio Rancho police officer was shot late Monday during a traffic stop in the Albuquerque, New Mexico, suburb. Police say the officer later died at a hospital. A person believed to be involved in the shooting was taken into custody in the Albuquerque area but authorities are still searching for another suspect. (AP Photo/Russell Contreras)

    Investigators mark evidence Tuesday, May 26, 2015 at the site where authorities say a Rio Rancho police officer was shot late Monday during a traffic stop in the Albuquerque, New Mexico, suburb. Police say the officer later died at a hospital. A person believed to be involved in the shooting was taken into custody in the Albuquerque area but authorities are still searching for another suspect. (AP Photo/Russell Contreras)  (The Associated Press)

  • This undated photo provided by the Rio Rancho Police Department shows Officer Gregg Benner. The officer was shot and killed during a traffic stop on Monday, May 25, 2015, in Rio Rancho, N.M. (Rio Rancho Police Department via AP)

    This undated photo provided by the Rio Rancho Police Department shows Officer Gregg Benner. The officer was shot and killed during a traffic stop on Monday, May 25, 2015, in Rio Rancho, N.M. (Rio Rancho Police Department via AP)  (The Associated Press)

A suburban Albuquerque police officer was shot and killed during a traffic stop, the first time a Rio Rancho officer was fatally shot in the line of duty in the department's 34-year history.

The officer, a military veteran who had been with the Rio Rancho Police Department for four years, was gunned down while pulling over a vehicle shortly after 8 p.m. Monday, police Capt. Paul Rogers said.

"It wasn't the result of the officer looking for them specifically," Rogers told Albuquerque news station KRQE-TV (http://goo.gl/SEqGaK ). "It appears as though it was circumstances that unfolded in front of the officer."

The officer, whose identity was not released immediately, died at a hospital.

A person believed to be involved in the shooting was taken into custody in the Albuquerque area early Tuesday, but authorities are still searching for another suspect.

Bernalillo County sheriff's Sgt. Aaron Williamson said several agencies helped with the apprehension, which occurred about 20 miles from where the officer was shot on a side road off a busy street.

Other details on suspects were not immediately available.

At the shooting scene, a maze of yellow crime-scene tape cordoned off the area between a library and post office and there were a handful of investigators wearing blue gloves in a parking lot.

Elijah Ortiz y Pino, 15, told the Albuquerque Journal (http://goo.gl/NVcKIz ) that he was turning a corner on his bicycle Monday night when he heard a siren and then four gunshots.

Pino said he saw an officer lying on his back in the roadway near the curb and a man was administering CPR.

It was not known who found the officer.

"Somebody called out 'officer down' on the radio," Rogers said.

The Rio Rancho Police Department was founded in 1981.