Witness against New Mexico prison gang killed outside home

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Updated 10:13 am PDT, Saturday, July 27, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Las Vegas police are investigating the shooting death in the northern New Mexico city of a man who testified against prison gang members last year.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that police made no immediate arrests in the killing Monday night of 48-year-old Leroy “Smurf” Lucero in front of his home.

Police investigator Caleb Marquez said police hadn’t determined a motive but there was no reason to believe anybody else was in danger.

Lucero was a former member of Syndicato de Nuevo Mexico and a key witness for the government in the trial of seven defendants in May 2018.

Lucero testified about various crimes, including a directive that led to the 2001 killings of two inmates at the Southern New Mexico Correctional Facility, a state prison in Las Cruces.