ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – It was a dangerous prank. An Animal Humane worker thought someone was shooting a gun at him on the freeway. Turns out, he was being shot with paintballs.
The workers in the Animal Humane truck said it felt like someone was blasting away at their truck on I-40 near Louisiana. KRQE News 13 learned what happened to them, has happened to other drivers.
The two Animal Humane employees were in a cargo truck, driving on I-40 Monday morning, when they thought they were under attack.
“Our drivers in the truck heard this ‘pow pow pow!’ Scared them to death,” explained Peggy Weigle, Executive Director for Animal Humane of New Mexico.
The workers thought someone was shooting at them.
“They thought that they were real bullets, and they were very scared,” Weigle told KRQE News 13.
As it turns out, they were being shot at. When the driver pulled over on San Mateo, they found three paintball splatters.
“One of them was really quite near the cab, and that’s the thing that really, I mean just imagine driving along and having a bullet shot at your car,” said Weigle. “I can’t believe they didn’t swerve and get into an accident.”
Animal Humane posted about it on Facebook and found it’s happened to other drivers in the same area. One woman said, they “splattered our mini-van with my daughter and I inside. Scared the crap out of us.”
“Unfortunately we do get calls like this more often than we would like to admit,” explained officer Tanner Tixier, of the Albuquerque Police Department.
However, Tixier said drive-by shootings with paintball guns from a moving car on the interstate, might be a first. “That could have very deadly circumstances,” said officer Tixier.
Animal Humane is thankful no one was hurt, and they have a message for the shooters.
“They were endangering lives, not just of my employees, but of the other drivers on the road, I mean that could have been a horrible, horrible accident,” said Weigle.
“It was stupid, just stupid, and it was reckless.”
The Animal Humane workers were on their way to their thrift shop on San Mateo to drop off donations. They believe the shooters were in a silver BMW with at least two Hispanic men in the car.
Police said if the paintball suspects are caught, they face a misdemeanor charge for propulsion of missiles.