ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (KRQE) – Was it murder or self defense?
A New Mexico man has been arrested for killing his neighbor he says was beating up a woman.
Alamogordo police say Alfred Whitehead, 21, shot and killed his neighbor, 36.
According to the criminal complaint, Whitehead saw the man beating his girlfriend outside their home around 11 p.m. Sunday.
They say he could hear the woman’s son, 10, yelling, “Quit hitting my mommy.”
Police say that’s when Whitehead went into his apartment and got a gun.
“I jumped out of bed and I looked at her and I said, ‘That was a gun shot, let’s go,’ ” said a neighbor.
Police say Whitehead pointed the gun at his neighbor and told him to stop hurting the woman. Officials say the man charged at him and that’s when he shot the man, killing him.
Whitehead is charged with an open count of murder.
Neighbors say they’re not sure what to think.
“I really don’t think the poor man should go down for murder because it was instinct and he was scared, but that man has a family, too, that’s going to want justice for that,” said one woman.
Police say once the investigation is through, the district attorney will decide the degree of murder.
They say the victim was shot once in the stomach. His name is not being released at this time.