Fighter shot, killed in Tucumcari

By Chelle Delaney: Freedom Newspapers

A Tucumcari martial-arts fighter was shot to death Thursday night.

Police said Albert Jason Pacheco Jr., 31, was killed following a fight on the city’s Main Street, near a gym where fighters were weighing in for a martial-arts event slated for Friday night.

The event, called the Desert Xtreme Blood War, was called off because of the shooting.

Tucumcari police held a man for questioning immediately after the shooting, but said Friday that man has been released.

Officials have declined to name the man they questioned.

Pacheco had participated in fights similar to the ones scheduled Friday and was coaching a fighter scheduled to compete on Friday, family members said.

After he was shot, Pacheco was transported to Trigg Memorial Hospital in a private vehicle. He died at the hospital, officials said.

Police said in a news release a witness reported seeing several men get out of a car and attack another man who was next to his parked vehicle on Main Street.

“The witness saw the man get knocked down,” the news release read. “The witness heard sounds consistent with gunfire. The witness said the other men then ran to the small white passenger car and drove away.”

The release said the man who was attacked “reached into his vehicle and grabbed a gun and fired up over his shoulder.”

Police said the man who fired the gun was the first to call police.

It was not immediately clear if Pacheco was involved in the altercation or if he was a bystander.