ROSWELL, N.M. (KRQE) – There’s been a significant change in the criminal case against the suspect 12-year-old Mason Campbell; Campbell has been charged with three counts of aggravated assault for injuring the two students and a teacher.
The District Attorney in Roswell, Janetta Hicks, decided Friday to hand the case over to the Clovis District Attorney Matt Chandler citing a conflict of interest.
Hicks says not only did her nephews witness the shooting, her niece was one of the students who called 911 for help.
Hicks who was raised in Roswell also says she knows the suspect’s parents and attends the same church as his grandmother. She doesn’t want anyone to question her handling of the case and feels handing it over is best.
Mason Campbell remains in a psychiatric hospital in Albuquerque. Janetta Hicks doesn’t know when he’ll be released or what facility he will be taken to next and doesn’t’ anticipate he’ll be released to his parents.
Nathaniel Tavarez’s uncle spoke with KRQE News 13 Friday saying this of his nephew, “we know that if he was able to speak for himself, he would also give his prayers to the individual that initiated this incident.”
The two victims of Tuesdays Roswell school shooting continue to recover at a Lubbock hospital.
Nathaniel Tavarez remains in critical condition with severe wounds to his head and face and Kendal Sanders is in satisfactory condition with serious injuries to her shoulder.
Their condition hasn’t changed significantly since Thursday.
Things are slowly returning to normal for students, parents, and staff at Berrendo Middle School.
Superintendent Tom Burris says the kids were ready to be back in school, but he knows there is a long road to recovery.
He says there are still repairs to be made in the gym where the shooting happened, so it will be a while before it’s back open.
“It was a difficult situation for me I have children in this school district, and this is the hardest thing a superintendent does is live through a situation like this,” says Burris.
About 60 percent of the students returned to class today, which is a drop from the number of students that went back yesterday, but Burris says that was expected because of the upcoming Martin Luther King holiday.
A Facebook page has been set up for people who would like to post prayers and well wishes for the students at Berrendo Middle School. The Facebook page is called “Praying for Berrendo Middle School.”
One post says, “Reminding the community quote: We are Bulldog strong.”
People have also posted pictures of kids holding “welcome back” and “you are loved” signs due to students returning to class yesterday.
There’s also information for counseling services for students and school staff.