Charges pending for man shot in stomach

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Charges are pending against a man shot in the stomach for threatening another man in Veguita on Oct. 9, according to the Socorro County Sheriff’s Department.

Deputy Ed Sweeney said trespass and assault charges are pending against Jude Lente. He didn’t anticipate charges would be brought against the shooter.

Deputy William Armijo said when he spoke with the 7th Judicial District Attorney, the DA was not considering charges against the shooter.

Sweeney said the shooter, a 71-year-old Veguita resident, called the sheriff’s department about 11:07 a.m. Oct. 9 to report someone came to his property on state Highway 304 and threatened him, so he shot the man in the stomach.

“He was very specific,” Sweeney said.

Sweeney said a few minutes after that call, the sheriff’s department got a call from Lente saying he had been shot. Lente phoned from his uncle’s house, about 1/4 mile away from where the shooting had occurred. He had walked to his uncle’s after being shot.

Sweeney, Armijo and Deputy Ken Brown responded to the calls. Lente told Armijo that he had gone to the house looking for work, but the older man just opened the door and shot him in the stomach.

The 71-year-old shooter told Sweeney that Lente had come to his place looking for a third man with whom Lente had a conflict, but the person did not live there. Lente and the third man had done some yard work for the older man a few weeks before, and sometime during the yard work the conflict had started.

The shooter told Sweeney that Lente showed up demanding to know where the other yard worker was. The resident replied the other worker didn’t live there and asked Lente to leave. Lente refused to leave and threatened the resident, who asked him three times to leave.

“Jude kept saying, ‘I’m going to F you up,’” Sweeney said.

When Lente did not leave the property, the resident shot him. Sweeney said the bullet went through Lente’s hand between his thumb and forefinger, then through the man’s stomach just under the skin, entering the right side and exiting at the left. He said the wound was not life threatening, and EMS took Lente to UNM Hospital in Albuquerque.