Jul. 5-A Santa Fe man who tried to intervene in a violent roadside incident Sunday that appeared to involve a domestic dispute is hospitalized in Albuquerque with a bullet lodged in his back, a family member says.
The Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office says in an incident report 29-year-old Kyle Ramirez-Stevens was driving on N.M. 14 south of Madrid, near the tiny community of San Pedro, on Sunday morning when he saw a man beating a woman in a gray Chevrolet Cruz or Impala parked on the side of the highway.
He decided to stop and try to help the woman, the report says, but when Ramirez-Stevens walked toward the couple's vehicle, which had a Colorado license plate, the man pulled out a small, black handgun and shot him in the abdomen.
The couple then drove away and has yet to be identified.
Ramirez-Stevens described the man as in his late 30s or early 40s, with a muscular build and a beard, according to the report. He said the woman was "pretty far along in pregnancy."
His grandfather, Enrique Montoya, who confirmed his grandson's identity, happened to be driving on N.M. 14 that day as he was heading to Albuquerque to spend some time with his girlfriend, he said in an interview Tuesday. He saw his grandson's car on the side of the highway surrounded by law enforcement.
"I figured he pulled over because he might have had something wrong," Enrique Montoya said. "When I walked across, that's when the policeman told me he was shot."
By that time, Ramirez-Stevens was receiving medical attention.
He told deputies to allow his grandfather to take his car rather than having it towed, Montoya said.
In the meantime, Ramirez-Stevens was taken to University of New Mexico Hospital for treatment, where his grandfather said he is still receiving care.
Hospital officials declined to speak about Ramirez-Stevens' condition.
The bullet hit Ramirez-Stevens' small intestine and colon, Montoya said, adding doctors have been unable to remove it because it is lodged in a muscle in his grandson's back.
As for his grandson's decision to try to be a good Samaritan and intervene in the violent incident, Montoya said he approved.
"We'd all do that," Montoya said. "He's former military; my son's former military - we'd all do that."
Santa Fe County sheriff's investigators are seeking information from anyone who might have witnessed the incident or may have information about the couple who fled. The sheriff's office asks anyone with information to contact detectives at 505-428-3720.