Former Socorro resident dies after shooting in Virginia

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A 911 call to New Mexico led authorities to a woman who had been shot at a home in Stafford County, Va.

Julie Serna, who graduated from Socorro High School in 1989, had been shot by her estranged husband, Arthur Gonzales.

Doña Ana County sheriff’s deputies in New Mexico responded to a house north of Las Cruces April 19 for a reported shooting, said sheriff’s office spokeswoman Kelly Jameson.

The caller said he and his wife had an argument. He told the dispatcher his wife threatened him with a knife and he shot her, Jameson said. He said she needed medical assistance.

But when seven deputies, firefighters and medical personnel arrived to the 1800 block of Maverick Trail in Las Cruces, where the call originated, they realized the actual emergency was nearly 2,000 miles away, Jameson said.

Dispatchers with the Mesilla Valley Regional Dispatch Authority learned the caller used to live at that home, but had moved to Stafford County, and took his voice-over Internet protocol routers with him.

VOIP routers allow users to connect landline telephones through an Internet service provider.

Jameson said the caller apparently plugged in the router at the Stafford residence, but had not notified the service provider of the move to Virginia, which caused his emergency phone call to be sent to New Mexico.

Stafford authorities were notified of the situation and given the caller’s phone number to follow up the situation, Jameson said.

Stafford deputies responded to a home in North Stafford around 2:42 p.m. Friday for the reported shooting, Stafford sheriff’s office spokesman Bill Kennedy said in a news release.

When deputies arrived they found a female victim suffering from gunshot wounds, he said.

“The shooting was between the husband and estranged wife,” Kennedy said.

Friends of the family say that Serna’s estranged husband, Gonzales, works for the FBI. A LinkedIn Web page for an Art Gonzales lists him as a supervisory special agent — instructor at the bureau’s National Academy at Quantico. Serna was the mother of two boys, friends said.

Serna was transported to an area hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Her body was taken to the chief medical examiner’s office in Richmond for the official determination of the cause of death, Kennedy said.

No charges have been filed, but Stafford detectives are investigating the incident, Kennedy said.

Due to the ongoing investigation, Kennedy said no additional information will be provided.