230516 farmington new mexico shooting ew 1115a b4f083

Police identified a New Mexico teenager Tuesday as the gunman who killed three senior citizens in a “purely random” attack before officers fatally shot him.

Beau Wilson, 18, was killed by Farmington police, who confronted him shortly after 11 a.m. Monday, Deputy Police Chief Kyle Dowdy told reporters.

Wilson was a student at Farmington High School, which was set to hold graduation ceremonies Tuesday.

Police identified the three slain women as Shirley Voita, 79, Melody Ivie, 73, and Gwendolyn Schofield, 97. Schofield was Ivie’s mother.

“Shirley, Melody and Gwendolyn were valued members of our community and their untimely deaths have left a void that will never be filled,” Deputy Police Chief Baric Crum said.

Community members sing at a prayer vigil at Hills Church in Farmington, N.M., on Monday.Susan Montoya Bryan / AP

All of the victims appeared to be well-known and -liked in the tight-knit community in the Four Corners region of New Mexico.

“I knew Shirley Voita; just a saint,” former state Rep. James Strickler said Tuesday. “We go to the same Catholic church. She went to Mass that morning with my wife, and she was caught up in this. “

Ivie was a well-respected preschool teacher, Strickler said.

“So it’s a very small town. Everybody knows everybody,” he said.

Dowdy said a doorbell camera captured what police believe were Wilson’s first shots, fired at 10:56 a.m., a minute before Farmington police officers were dispatched to the neighborhood near Ute Street and Dustin Avenue.

The officers arrived at 11:02 a.m. to find Wilson opening fire; he was brought down at 11:06 a.m., police said.

“The suspect was shot, and almost simultaneously as well, an officer was shot,” Dowdy said.

Image: Investigators work along a residential street following a deadly shooting on May 15, 2023, in Farmington, N.M.
Investigators work along a residential street after a deadly shooting Monday in Farmington, N.M. Susan Montoya Bryan / AP

The gunman appeared to fire at random, as at least six houses and three cars were hit by gunfire in the quarter-mile-long crime scene, police said.

The gunman and officers fired more than 150 rounds, Dowdy said.

“I can’t say who fired what yet, because I’m not sure,” he said. “So on the scene so far, and we’re still counting [because] that’s legitimately going to go up, at this point we found approximately 150 [rounds] exchanged.”

Police said they have not immediately been able to make any connection between Wilson and his victims, who were in cars when they were fatally wounded.

“It appears to be purely random and had no specific targets or motives that we can identify at this time,” Dowdy said.

Two members of law enforcement — Farmington Police Sgt. Rachel Discenza and New Mexico State Police Officer Andreas Stamatiadas — were injured but have been released from the hospital, Mayor Nate Duckett said.

Discenza has been with the Farmington department for 10 years. Stamatiadas, a four-year veteran, was wounded driving to the scene, officials said.

San Juan County Sheriff Shane Ferrari said his agency has been tasked with investigating the response of the police officer who fired 16 shots.

The teenager used at least three weapons, including what Farmington Police Chief Steve Hebbe called an AR-style rifle.

A Farmington Municipal Schools representative declined to say whether Wilson was a senior who would have walked across the graduation stage.

“Farmington Municipal Schools (FMS) shares the sadness of the Farmington community over the tragic incident that occurred yesterday,” the school system said in statement. “We want to honor and remember the lives of those who were lost, as they were cherished members of our city.”

The Farmington High School commencement was held as scheduled early Tuesday evening, NBC affiliate KOB of Albuquerque reported.

Andrew Blankstein, Maya Brown, Valeriya Antonshchuk and Doha Madani contributed.

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