Juan de Onate was eventually charged with using “excessive force” against the Acoma people. Juan de Onate was eventually charged with using “excessive force” against the Acoma people.
According to the New Mexico State Police and local authorities, there was an altercation, leading to the shooting of the victim, though they did not specify the nature of the altercation. Authorities stated that they do not know the current status of the victim, but he was taken to hospital to receive medical treatment. The video was not included in the story out of respect for the victim’s family. According to statements made to CNN by Sheriff Billy Merrifield of Rio Arriba County, the man in the video is Ryan Martinez from Albuquerque New Mexico. The statue had been removed from the building in 2020. Rio Arriba County Commissioners decided to install the statue in the Rio Arriba County Annex Building, where the shooting and protest took place. In a press release, the law enforcement claimed that they warned the county commissioners about the potential for violence during the rededication and protests. Two commissioners responded by postponing the rededication. The Rio Arriba County Office of the County Manager issued a statement saying:
The County of Rio Arriba was deeply saddened and concerned by the tragic incident that occurred today at the Rio Arriba County Annex Building. Yesterday, the County stated that it supports and respects the First Amendment right of people to peacefully gather. It also reminded the public of the First Amendment’s protection of their right to speak and associate with those who share the same views. Acoma refused to pay, resulting in an incident where 13 Spaniards, including Onate’s relative, were killed. Onate, in retaliation for the Acoma’s refusal to pay the tax, ordered the destruction of their village, which had a population of more than 2,000. Only 200 people survived. In recent years, statues in the US have been a source of controversy. Statues of Confederate military leaders during the US Civil War, and early colonial leaders and Americans who owned slaves, are among the most controversial. A man killed one person and injured dozens of others in Charlottesville Virginia in 2017 during the “Unite the Right Rally”, which was held to protest the removal
a Confederate General Robert E. Lee statue. In Texas, Tennessee and Louisiana, the removal of controversial statues in the US was challenged through legal means.