3 Las Cruces policemen cleared in fatal shooting

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) - The Third Judicial District Attorney's Office has cleared three Las Cruces police officers in a fatal shooting three months ago.

District Attorney Mark D'Antonio says an investigation showed the officers were justified in the actions they took in the July 2 incident.

Authorities say 37-year-old Jose Estrada was fatally shot after officers responded to a call about a man threatening people at a Las Cruces home.

A multi-agency task force investigated the shooting and determined Estrada disobeyed multiple commands from police and pointed what appeared to be an assault-style rifle at them before being shot.

The weapon Estrada had turned out to be a pellet rifle that strongly resembles an AR-15.

Police say the three veteran officers initially were placed on standard administrative leave, but have since returned to duty.