The homes and offices of Democratic officials were shot up in New Mexico

The homes or offices of five elected Democratic officials in New Mexico, including the new attorney general, were hit by gunshots last month and authorities are working to determine if the attacks are related.

No one was injured in the shootings, which are being investigated by local and federal agencies, Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina said. He called the investigation top priority.

Police initially reported four shootings, but then announced late Thursday that a shooting at the former campaign office of newly elected New Mexico Attorney General Raul Torrez is being re-investigated.

The attacks come amid a sharp rise in threats against members of Congress and two years after supporters of then-President Donald Trump attacked the US Capitol and left lawmakers running for their lives. Local school board members and poll workers across the country were also harassed, intimidated and threatened with violence.

In New Mexico, the attacks began on April 12 when someone fired eight rounds at the Albuquerque home of Bernalillo County Commissioner Adriann Barboa, police said. Seven days later, someone shot more than a dozen times at the Albuquerque home of then-Bernalillo Commissioner Debbie O’Malley.

On December 12, ShotSpotter technology detected multiple gunshots in the area of ​​Torrez’s former office. 10, police spokesman Gilbert Gallegos said. But he said the attorney general and his staff had already moved out after his election in November.

Just this week, on Tuesday evening and Thursday morning, several shots were fired at the senator’s house. Linda Lopez and the State Senator’s Office. Moe Maestas.

“It’s traumatizing to have multiple bullets go straight through my front door as my family and I prepared to celebrate Christmas,” Barboa, who has been the county commissioner since January 2021, told Albuquerque-based television station KRQE. “No one deserves such menacing and dangerous attacks.”

O’Malley, who resigned as commissioner after a maximum of two terms, said in an email that she and her husband were asleep before the shots hit the mud wall around their home.

“To say I’m angry about this attack on my home — on my family, is the least,” O’Malley said in an email. “I remember thinking how grateful I was that my grandchildren didn’t stay the night and that those bullets didn’t go through my house.”

Lopez, who has been a senator since 1997, said three of the bullets fired at her home went through her 10-year-old daughter’s bedroom.

“I am asking the public to provide any information that will assist the police in apprehending the perpetrators,” Lopez said in a statement.

Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller called the shootings troubling. He said they were serious crimes regardless of whether anyone was hurt.

Republican leaders in the New Mexico Senate issued a joint statement expressing their condolences to their fellow congressmen.

“We are incredibly grateful that our Senate colleagues, their families and the other victims are unharmed,” the statement said. “The Albuquerque Police Department, the New Mexico State Police and the FBI have opened an investigation and we eagerly await the investigation arrest and prosecution of the perpetrator”.

Federal officials have warned of the potential for violence and attacks on government officials and buildings, and the Department of Homeland Security has said domestic extremism remains one of the top terrorist threats in the United States

Local officials have also faced an increasing number of threats in recent years.

In October, an assailant looking for then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi broke into her San Francisco home and used a hammer to attack her husband Paul, who suffered blunt injuries and was hospitalized. Rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 1, 2021 and halted confirmation of President Joe Biden’s election victory, roamed the halls shouting menacingly and demanding, “Where’s Nancy?”

Members of a paramilitary group have been found guilty of conspiring to kidnap Michigan’s governor. And in August, a gunman opened fire on an FBI office in Ohio after posting online that federal agents should be killed “on sight” after the FBI searched Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home.

Across the US, poll workers were harassed and hounded, and some had to go into hiding. There have also been threats against judges, school authorities and armed protests in capital cities across the country.

In June, a man was arrested outside the Maryland home of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and said he was there to kill the judge after a leaked court report suggested the court was likely to overturn Roe v. Wade .

But the escalation of threats and violence against lawmakers and other government officials is not new. In 2017, Rep. Steve Scalise was shot and killed in Virginia during a congressional baseball practice.

Associated Press reporters Terry Tang in Phoenix and Alanna Durkin Richer in Boston contributed to this report.

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