Police Shoot at a Minivan Filled With Kids

Oriana Farrell bolted from law enforcement officers in New Mexico twice--leading cops to shoot at her minivan before finally pulling her over and arresting her.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

What started as a routine traffic stop in Taos, New Mexico has blown up into a scandal.  The driver and her son are facing charges, while the police officers who fired at a minivan full of children are being investigated, according to the news outlet KRQE.

On October 28th, a New Mexico state police officer pulled over a woman named Oriana Farrell for speeding.  Farrell was driving with her five kids, who range in age from 6 to 18.

Video of the incident published by KQRE shows that Farrell, the mother, and the police officer were talking.  Farrell couldn’t decide whether to contest the ticket she received for speeding.  The officer then instructs Farrell to turn off her car.  But she doesn’t listen, and drives off.

So the officer had to pull her over again.  The state law enforcement official told Farrell to get out the car, but she refused to.  Then, Farrell’s 14-year-old son got out of the car and approached the officer, who pulled out his Taser and pointed it at him.  At one point, Farrell agreed to get out of the car to talk to the officer.  But the conversation didn’t last long, and Farrell bolted back towards her minivan.

Then, chaos ensued.  The 14-year-old got out of the car again and rushed up to the officer.  After the boy went back into the minivan, Farrell sped off, but not before an officer smashed a window with his baton.  Another officer fired shots at the minivan full of children.

A high speed chase ended with Farrell giving herself up. She and her 14-year-old son were arrested.  She’s charged with child abuse, fleeing officers and possessing drug paraphernalia--marijuana pipes.  The 14-year-old is being charged with battery of an officer.


Alex Kane is former World editor at AlterNet. His work has appeared in Mondoweiss, Salon, VICE, the Los Angeles Review of Books and more. Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.

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