FARMINGTON – The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office shot and killed a man Monday suspected of pointing a gun and throwing an inactive grenade at law enforcement during a standoff in a rural part of eastern Farmington.
The series of events began at 1:33 a.m. when the Farmington Police Department responded to a report of a severely injured woman near South Dustin Road and Almon Street, near the Countryside Mobile Home Park in west Farmington, according to a news release issued Tuesday by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office.
Officers learned two men had battered the woman at a home in the Wildflower area, the release said. The woman was taken to a hospital where she underwent surgery and was treated for excessive blood loss and a broken femur.
Officers determined the assault occurred at a home on County Road 3935, where one of the suspects lives. The Sheriff’s Office obtained a search warrant for the home of Tedman Werito, 44. Deputies arrived at the house about 9:06 a.m. and used a loudspeaker to communicate with the occupants of the house and requested they come outside.
Six people, including Werito, came out of the house, according to the release.
Werito made verbal threats toward the deputies and re-entered the home, indicating he planned to retrieve a firearm, the release said. Deputies attempted to call Werito out of the house but were unsuccessful.
At about 10:20 a.m., the county SWAT team arrived with an armored vehicle, while deputies continued to give commands for Werito to surrender, the release said. But Werito began going in and out of the home while brandishing a firearm. He then threw a grenade at deputies that was later determined to be inert, the release said.
“In an effort to get the suspect out of the house and comply with commands, two flash bangs were deployed,” the release said. “When that was ineffective, tear gas was introduced into the residence.”
Werito left the home at 10:57 a.m. and pointed a firearm at deputies, who in return fired their weapons, the release said. Medics who were staged in the area responded immediately, but Werito died at the scene.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Werito was a convicted felon and a habitual offender. He was released from jail on pretrial services in December 2020 for failure to appear on a battery charge. While out on pretrial services, he was charged with assault and was ordered to turn himself in March 11, but failed to do so. He had three active warrants for aggravated assault, battery and possession of a controlled substance, according to the release.
No officers or residents were injured during the incident.
The deputies involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave per Sheriff’s Office policy.
The San Juan County Regional Officer Involved Shooting Task Force is investigating the officer-involved shooting.
“Conclusions about whether the actions of the deputies are consistent with department policy and the law will not be made until all the facts are known and the investigation is complete,” the release said.
Anyone with additional information about the incident is asked to call the Farmington Police Department at (505) 599-1068.
An earlier version of this story said the shooting occurred east of downtown Farmington. To clarify, the shooting was about 5 miles east of the downtown area.