New Mexico police shoot at van full of kids during traffic stop

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NEW MEXICO -- A police officer's dashboard camera captured a dangerous traffic stop on Oct. 28 in New Mexico.

According to KABC-TV, the incident turned into a wild scene when the driver took off as she was being ticketed for driving 71 miles per hour in a 55 miles per hour zone.

Officers then opened fire on her minivan with her five kids inside.

In the video, Oriana Ferrell and a state police officer are arguing over a ticket. After the cop walks off, Ferrell drives away and is pulled over again by the same officer.

The dash cam shows the officer trying to pull Ferrell out while the five kids inside scream.

Finally, Ferrell agrees to get out and talk, but the conversation doesn't last long. Ferrell and the cop struggle as she tries to get back into the van.

The woman's 14-year-old son gets out of the van and rushes the officer, trying to defend his mom.

Ferrell starts to drive off while another officer fires at the minivan full of kids as young as six.

KABC-TV reported that a four-minute high speed chase ensues, as the woman is cutting into wrong way traffic before eventually pulling over and giving up in front of a hotel.

Ferrell was charged with five counts of abuse of a child, aggravated fleeing an officer, resisting an officer, reckless driving and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Her 14-year-old son was charged with battery of an officer.

The family is reportedly from Tennessee, but was taking a road trip through New Mexico.

It was reported that both officers are under investigation.

Read more: KABC-TV


  • Alice Richards

    Isn’t it ashamed that when you see a state trooper or police officer and you, ( a single mother) with her children are in fear of your life or harm??? Have to think ” what would you do”??? Have to wonder what was going thru her head… Crash?!

    • Chris

      My wife didn’t react like that, and thousands of others in the coarse of a year. What was she hiding or does she just have a lack of respect for the uniform?

  • pat banta (@dobydog1)

    most people here seem to blame the cops. the woman drove off not once but twice. the 14 year old gets out and assults one of the cops. the cops have to wonder why there was such a need to get away from the cops. were the other kids kidnap victims, was their contraband in the vehicle, were they running away from a crime that the mon and older son had committed. usually only guilty people run from the cops like this. would you blame the cops if the mother killed this kids?

  • Charles

    The officer who fired on the van is in the wrong…there was no justification for deadly force here. The initial officer should have tasered the mother when she went to return to the vehicle and also should have tasered or sprayed the 14 year old when he came around and attacked him. In the end, the woman and her son were both properly charged, but the officer who fired his firearm should also be disciplined accordingly.

    -Former Biloxi, MS Police Officer-

  • Sons

    Too many idiots on here. Yes, the mother should have been arrested for driving off. But, that doesn’t justify the police shooting the vehicle and putting the kids in danger. Trying to shoot the tires ….please. We all know that’s bull. What if he shot the gas tank? Would the lives of six PEOPLE be a fair exchange for the 130.00 ticket that this was all about from the beginning.The son was just doing what any child would do when they see someone causing harm to their mother. We are not robots that do everything the police say. They are not gods and they do make mistakes like everyone else.The problem is that quite often they don’t pay for their mistakes and that’s why so many people dislike police. In poorer areas or when minorities are involved the police feel they can do whatever they want because People don’t have money to fight for their rights. Regardless of wealth or the position someone holds.I believe everyone should be accountable for their actions. Unfortunately that’s not the world we live in.

    • Chris

      It’s total lack for the uniform, that is why the kid rushed the cops. He obviously learned that from his mother. Shooting at the car by the 3rd officer as they were driving off was inappropriate, and a very ineffective effort. In stress situations most shooting is off and he probably couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn. Up until that the cops did not use excessive force. She was combatant and the kid placed the officers in danger and himself.

  • Yuki Wada

    Well I guess we found where the least trained and smallest mental capacity officers are accepted…figures about the same chance as the state ever paying for itself without stronger states like NY $$$ Support. Can’t train stupid. Maybe the next century will bring us intelligence /HGH in a bottle wear we can add it to the water supply to get 100 IQ and 175 soaking wet men to apply not Darrell deputizing Darrell

    • Dacobs

      As for training “stupid” lets start with the mother of those children. You do not jump back in your vehicle until the Police say you can leave, duh! If she’d comported herself properly we wouldn’t all be posting here.

  • nothaving it

    I wonder how many people here realize that the Supreme Court ruled many years ago that it is unconstitutional to shoot at an unarmed fleeing vehicle?

  • Jason

    Another example of Nazi police offiers going crazy. They should all be fired and put in prison. No wonder there is so littlle respect for law enforcement anymore………….

    • Chris

      Nazi police? Really? That is your argument? Try harder and then comeback this fear mongering and empty argument is part of the problem with people

  • Alabama

    Up until Sept 2011 I would have sided with the officers actions without question, except for the one that fired his weapon… In Sept 2011 I traveled to Albuquerque from Alabama with my wife and 4 kids to visit my father who was sick with cancer. On my return drive I was pulled over by a NMSP officer near Santa Rosa. The officer approached my vehicle on the right and ordered me out onto the highway without even telling me why I was being detained ( wife and kids freaking out ) After exiting my vehicle the officer ordered me back to his car at which time the officer told me he clocked me going 82 in a 75 and wrote a citation.. I am 100% positive the poorly trained officer clocked the car coming up behind me. The officer falsified the road conditions on the ticket and stated my minivan was silver and it was black. I was going 70mph max up hill. I signed the penalty assessment rather than returning 1200 miles to fight a $77 ticket…
    I would question if the women was actually speeding… I do not consider NMSP highly trained, they are poorly trained and use the motor vehicle code to target out of state drivers to raise revenue for the state… ( very common practice ) Anybody that thinks the NMSP are a respectable agency needs to google how many NMSP officers have been arrested for dui in last 3 years or fired for having sexual relations on top of a police car in uniform…. The officer that fired his gun needs to be charged….. period…..

  • Heather Hurley Prescott

    Out of curiosuity what would some of you think, if the mother had wrecked and killed all her children running from the cops? Would she be so innocent then? I’m sure the officer that shot at the van was aiming for tires since we didn’t see any windows shatter. I seriously doubt she was taking her kids to the Rio Grande…there is so much more to this story

  • Kevin Earl Wood

    This is a case about excessive police force against a mother and her children and cops gone wild. Yes, she should not have driven off. The force was excessive in response to the original stop for simply speeding. Shooting at a vehicle loaded with children is not a reasonable first response.

    In a similar case in Florida a black female college student was assaulted, battered, and arrested for not rolling down her window “all the way” to receive her yellow copy of a traffic ticket for a bad tail light. Her window was smashed out by the cop also.

    Sign this petition if you agree there was, again, excessive force.

    Signing petitions such as this send our message that excessive force by police officers will not be tolerated in our society.

  • Michael

    First off anyone who drives away from a cop after getting pulled over is in trouble and the 2nd time the cop pulled her over I think he had every right to be even more aggressive then he was. Then she refused his orders and her son bull rushed the cop and locked the door so he broke out the window. As for the 3rd cop who arrived you can clearly tell that he was aiming for the tires but if any punishment for the cops it would be on him. The two other cops were just trying to do their jobs and the mom should be locked up and the boy should get some sort of probabtion or juvenile detention because he is only 14. This is not a race thing so stop trying to make it one it is truly a pathetic excuse

    • Amy

      So let citizens basically disregard the law and law enforcement and expect officers to just “be cool” and let blatant disregard of rules we have set to protect our society? No way! We already spoon-feed the irresponsible and reward negative behavior.

  • ah052070

    The cop didn’t have any grounds for shooting at a car pulling away, I don’t care what anyone on here is saying. That guy should definitely be fired and I served my country as a military police officer on various bases overseas. Everything on the video indicates the other cops are overzealous, especially after they know it’s a woman driver who poses them no physical threat. They’re also all aware that there’s kids in the car after the one guy approaches the window. This lady probably just should’ve been given a short lecture and I’m sure that would’ve made enough of an impression on her. The other officers represent what we used used to call a clusterfuck on base. It’s when too many officers converge on a scene like this when it really would’ve taken one officer to handle the matter. These guys give new meaning to the term “Keystone Cops”. What they are is idiots who are unfit for duty as police officers.

  • Amy

    After watching the entire video, it is beyond apparent that she is completely irresponsible and blatantly resisted and avoided arrest. I feel sorry for the officers that had to deal with such an idiot. If everyone was allowed to behave the way she chose, we would be dealing with complete anarchy. She has no respect for the law. She deserves to learn a leason.

  • Amy

    To all that are commenting on this incident, make sure you watch the entire video. It will shed so much light on why the officers had to do what they did.

  • Len

    You’re already worked up, nervous and upset for getting the ticket. The cop escalates the situation by being dispassionate and unsympathetic regardless of how rude the lady was acting. He could have used better IPC skills and left her felling good about receiving the $100+ ticket and moved on. He only added fuel to the fire by not recognizing the situation for what it was and handling it appropriately. The Officer had all her information! Make a command decision and send her the bill, or even a court date. A little cool down time for citizens could go a long way for both sides while improving relations and allowing the State/Gov.. to still rake in the $$$. Take her kids away and don’t be surprised if she retaliates with something really cray-cray. All over an slighted Officer trying to impose his attitude, power, and authority over a speeding ticket.

  • Eric.m

    This is very wrong discrimination will never end in this country .but I am very sure those officers will walk away free after all .i am very very mad when I saw this video I can’t believe this .

  • Chris

    Tim may be bigoted, well is but the cops were not completely in the wrong here. The woman left, why? She was pulled over and cop lost his cool, but the son got out of car! Not smart. Then the woman got out, good idea that went bad again when son attacked cops again. He is lucky he didn’t get tazered or shot at that point. It was a bad situation that just out of control. When stopped by police, pull over, don’t argue, you won’t win in the field. Just comply and move on, and deal with it later. Cops get worked up when pulling people over because they get shot at, people grab their arms and drive off. Constant threat of danger, don’t be stupid like this woman and her family

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