ALBUQUERQUE — A 13-year-old boy at Albuquerque’s Washington Middle School was taken into custody Friday afternoon after police say he shot and killed a fellow student during a lunch break on campus.

The boy who was shot, whose name has not yet been released by police, was pronounced dead en route to an area hospital, Albuquerque police Deputy Cmdr. Kyle Hartsock said. He also was believed to be about 13, according to the Associated Press.

Hartsock said an Albuquerque Public Schools police officer was on-site and immediately de-escalated the situation, taking the suspected shooter into custody.

Hartsock had no information on how many shots were fired but said the shooting took place around 12:45 p.m. on a grass infield surrounding the school’s track.

Washington Middle School is in downtown Albuquerque and has 430 students in grades 6-8. Friday was the third day of school, and Superintendent Scott Elder said the campus would be closed Monday so students, parents and staff could seek counseling.

“It’s just a terrible day for APS, just a terrible day for this community,” Elder said.

Just moments before the Albuquerque Police Department addressed media about the shooting, a girl walking to a nearby vehicle said, “My friend just died,” and “I couldn’t stop it.”

She and a man walking with her declined to give their names.

Students were sent home after the shooting, creating a traffic jam in which parents were directed to one side of campus while dozens of police vehicles blocked off intersections in every direction. By midafternoon, the Albuquerque Police Department’s Mobile Crime Lab had taken over the scene, and police barricades were still in place by late afternoon.

Hartsock said several students remained on campus and were being questioned by police.

“We don’t think there is any other shooters outstanding right now, or any other victims,” Hartsock said.

Police were questioning students and staff about the relationship between the shooter and the victim, and whether there was bullying involved, he said.

“That is part of what we’re investigating right now,” he said. “It’s much too early to give any ideas on what led to this.”

Deputy Chief Eric Garcia was unaware if the school’s surveillance system recorded the shooting, but he said police were interviewing residents and people at nearby businesses to gather more information.

He added the police department was looking into whether other students might have been involved, saying the early investigation revealed some students had more detailed information than others.

Elder said the school district will ramp up its security measures as soon as students return to campus. “Security, safety — it’s our top priority.”

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham issued a statement Friday saying she was horrified and heartbroken by the shooting.

“My thoughts go out to the students, families and staff of Washington Middle School, and my prayers are with the loved ones of the victim and all those affected by this senseless act of violence,” she said. “We must continue to do everything in our power to address the scourge of gun violence in our state. These tragedies should never occur.”

Outgoing Public Education Secretary Ryan Stewart and his replacement, Secretary-designate Kurt Steinhaus, also issued a joint statement, calling Friday a “horrendous day for New Mexico.”

The middle school tragedy means “the terrible scourge of school violence has landed on our doorstep,” the statement said. “… We share in your grief and pain as we once again are called upon to reflect on our failure — as adults and as a society — to protect and preserve the lives and health of our children.”

(29) comments

Khal Spencer

Ok, he got the gun from dear old Dad, according to the Journal. Lock him up too. Ladies and Gentlemen (and all you non-binary people, too), if you can't responsibly own firearms, DO NOT OWN ANY FIREARMS.

From the Albuquerque Journal:

"During a press conference Saturday morning, Albuquerque police said the shooting happened during a bullying incident and Saucedo’s parents told police the teen took the gun from his father...(snip)...Saucedo’s father told a New Mexico Children’s, Youth and Families worker that he noticed his gun missing at noon on Friday. He said he called his wife, who told him she had not taken the gun, and went to the school to see his son being handcuffed."

Diego Mondragon

Wow! Yup - agreed. And HE (Saucedo) was the bully. The poor kid he shot just asked him to stop bullying his friend and he didn't want to fight and the little piece of **** just shot him. Throw him in his pathetic cage.

Diego Mondragon

And yes you're right you worthless piece of s***. You don't deserve to eat.

Comment deleted.
Diego Mondragon

Lol, that is funny about the Three Stooges. But yes, I once got my a** handed back to me also, the one time I tried being a bully in elementary school. Learned my lesson, never did it again, and was totally against it ever since. And I couldn't agree more with you on the social media bs. Too bad it all can't be completely banned.

Richard Reinders

The parent should be in court right along side his child if it was his gun, it is turning into Chicagoburque.

Diego Mondragon

Couldn't agree more. The parent should be held accountable with his kid regardless whose gun it was. I could careless about politics on either side, but I have sent countless emails to our Mayor of Abq. Of course, all are unanswered.

Jeff clark

Heartbreaking. Will the adult who allowed this child access to the gun be held accountable too?

Diego Mondragon

Agreed Mr. Clark and hopefully. Certainly should be.

Prince Michael Jauregui

My condolences to the family, friends and loved-ones of the victim and all those afflicted by the plague of gun-violence in the United States.

Again: "America's" bullets have come home to roost.

The Summer of Lead (c).

Diego Mondragon

Howdy Prince and Khal! Agreed with the both of yous on this matter!

Prince Michael Jauregui

Brother Diego, good to see you man! Hoo-Rah!

Diego Mondragon

Likewise brother, hoo-rah my man!!

Khal Spencer

A 13 year old should not have a handgun or for that matter, any gun unless under supervision. A 13 year old is not mature, which is why a 13 year old has parents. Whoever is responsible for that kid having access to a gun, whether it be a negligent parent or a bum selling guns on the street, needs to be prosecuted as an accessory to murder.

Diego Mondragon

However Khal, 13 year olds are much more mature than we know. How do I know? I have seen my 13 year old daughter grow up way too fast. Why? Social media, reality TV, and all the bs that is out there to poison them these days. I do my absolute best as a father/mother to limit her exposure to this bs.

Khal Spencer


Khal Spencer

A reference. I was looking for something recent. Please add if you know something better.

Diego Mondragon

I'd love to see this. However, it doesn't let me click on the link.

Khal Spencer

Its not a live link. Gotta copy and paste it into a new browser tab.

Diego Mondragon

That, we'll never know, Khal. I guess I can only speak on what I do know. Not sure your age, but when I was 13, there certainly wasn't this social media, nonsense reality tv, and media, whom all glorify this bs. What I do know is, that under my roof, my 13 and 11 year old girls know this junk is not tolerated. I see their little friends with zero parental guidance, whom are glued to their phones and social media. I see these young adult girls, laughing at online bullies and their parents are nowhere to be found. What I can control, is what happens under my roof. And my girls know that none of this will be happening as long as I'm around.

Khal Spencer

I'm in my sixties. We didn't have antisocial media back then. We did have TV, which could be bad enough.

In second grade I clonked a classmate over the head after watching too many Three Stooges TV shows. Of course the teacher called my parents. Result? I was banned from watching the Three Stooges after my parents told me I obviously was not capable of telling slapstick comedy from reality.

I suspect the ratio of social media B.S. to parental guidance is far too high. With young people escalating social media wars to real ones, we have a problem. Especially when they have firepower.

Diego Mondragon

Ed - would you be typing the same words had it been your kid gunned down?

Comment deleted.
Elizabeth Jones

Diego… he’s 13!!! Wth?! He is not the only one to blame in this situation. I’d be curious to know about family and upbringing before rushing to judge a child.

Andrew Lucero

I am overwhelmed by equal measures of shock, sadness and disgust… What does it say about our society when a Jr. High Student can senselessly murder a classmate on their 3rd day of school?

I have many questions, but right now, my thoughts and prayers go out to the victim and his family. I can’t even begin to imagine what they are feeling, or how they are going to piece their lives back together again… My prayers also go out to the shooter and his family… Not only did this young man take the life of his classmate, but he has decimated the lives of both families as well. I genuinely feel bad for him, because there is very little hope for someone who has thrown their life and future away at the age of 13. And the sad truth is, he’s probably too young to fully comprehend that just yet… It’s been a truly sad, sad day…What a sickening waste of young lives. All in the name of stupidity.

abe ben

100 percent.

Welcome to the discussion.

Thank you for joining the conversation on Please familiarize yourself with the community guidelines. Avoid personal attacks: Lively, vigorous conversation is welcomed and encouraged, insults, name-calling and other personal attacks are not. No commercial peddling: Promotions of commercial goods and services are inappropriate to the purposes of this forum and can be removed. Respect copyrights: Post citations to sources appropriate to support your arguments, but refrain from posting entire copyrighted pieces. Be yourself: Accounts suspected of using fake identities can be removed from the forum.