LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KRQE) – Tai Chan showed no emotion when detectives told him his partner, who prosecutors say he gunned down was dead. The jury was able to see that reaction Friday as an interview between Chan and detectives played in court as part of his murder trial.
Detectives interviewed Chan about six hours after the shooting. That’s when they told Chan his partner didn’t make it. After that, Chan was left alone by himself. He continued to drink water in the video, with no other reaction.
Earlier in the interview, he answered “yes or no sir” when a detective read him his Miranda rights. He then told the detective he doesn’t want to speak with them.
It was October 2014 when Chan and Martin, both Santa Fe County Sheriff deputies, were staying the night at the Hotel Encanto in Las Cruces after dropping off an inmate in Arizona.
Police there say the two got into an argument at a bar. Police say that turned into a fight back at the hotel and Chan shot Martin in the back as he was running to an elevator.
After the interview played in court, prosecutors asked the detective on stand to describe Chan after he was told Martin was dead.
Earlier in court, a string of hotel witnesses took the stand. One guest says he heard someone yell quote, “oh no, oh god” and then gunshots. He then says he heard someone running and moaning down the hall.
Toward the end of the day, a medical examiner described in graphic detail Martin’s autopsy including the fact that he was shot from behind. She explained Martin received five gunshot wounds and had cuts and bruises all over his body.
Prosecutors asked the examiner if it was true all the entry gunshot wounds went from back to front. She replied, “yes it is.” He then asked if it was true that there were five shots in total. She replied, “yes it is.”
The medical examiner also told the jury Martin was tested for drugs and alcohol. The drug tests were negative but, his blood alcohol level was slightly over the legal limit.
Prosecutors say this was murder. Chan claims it was self-defense but neither side has said what the two were fighting about.