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By Vic Vela
Albuquerque Journal

SANTA FE, N.M. - A suspected drug dealer was shot to death by police Monday evening after he allegedly tried to flee from officers during an undercover bust on Santa Fe's south side, according to State Police.
Some officers were injured in the confrontation - from being rammed by the suspect as he tried to get away in a pickup truck at the Santa Fe Outlets mall, police said.
Officers from four law enforcement agencies were present when police opened fire on the man while he was still in the truck. His identity was had not been released late Monday.
The truck and, apparently, the suspect were both struck multiple times with gunfire, police said. State Department of Public Safety spokesman Peter Olson said he saw several bullet holes in the truck after the shooting.
The drug suspect was fired on after he used the truck to ram officers who were on foot and in vehicles. He was trying to drive out of the parking lot of the outlet mall, 3007 Cerrillos Road, Olson said.
"We do know for sure that he hit at least two police cars and two officers who were on foot," Olson said. Police said a couple of officers were knocked to the ground.
There was no evidence Monday night that the suspect had a gun or fired any shots, but Olson said police were still trying to piece together the details of the incident.
The shooting took place about 5 p.m., during rush hour not far from one of Santa Fe's busiest thoroughfares. The Inn at Santa Fe hotel is next to the shopping center.
The man shot by police was at first reported to be in serious condition after being taken to Christus-St. Vincent Regional Medical Center. But Olson said later the suspect died at the hospital.
Olson did not know where on his body the suspect was hit by the officers' gunfire or how many shots were fired by the police.
Olson also couldn't say late Monday exactly how many officers were injured or which law enforcement agencies the injured cops operate under.
The injured officers received treatment at St. Vincent for non-life-threatening injuries, Olson said.
The man who was killed was the target of an undercover operation by the Region III drug enforcement task force, made up of state, federal and local law enforcement agencies.
The State Police, Santa Fe police, the Santa Fe County Sheriff 's Department and FBI agents were involved in Monday's operation.
Olson said the man was selling drugs to an undercover agent from his truck and panicked when officers were about to make an arrest.
"We made a bust and he fled," Olson said. "In his flight, he hit police vehicles, and after several collisions he was fired at."
Olson said the suspect's pickup ended up "nose-to-nose with a police vehicle" after the shots were fired.

Wire Service
 
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