SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Police in Santa Fe are searching for the suspect or suspects in a drive-by shooting that killed a pet goat.
The shooting happened Sunday evening and killed Maria, a Nigerian dwarf goat who lived with two other goats and other animals at the home in a central-Santa Fe community.
Someone in a blue-green minivan drove up to the fenced yard where the goats are kept and fired three shots from a small-caliber pistol, hitting the animal once in the abdomen and once through a nasal passage. (Two goats who survived the shooting are pictured.)
Maria's owners, one of whom is an emergency medical technician, tried for more than an hour to care for the dying goat.
"The fact that this was a goat getting killed is bad enough," Santa Fe Police Chief Aric Wheeler said. "But this is also a drive-by shooting of a home in the middle of the city. That's a major concern for us."
Wheeler told the Santa Fe New Mexican that the suspect could face felony charges of animal cruelty, shooting at an occupied building and negligent firearm use.
The goat was one of three owned by two women who live in the home. They also have 12 chickens, four cats, a dog and a duck, most of them rescue animals.
The owners, who didn't want to be identified, and neighbors said the goats were a local fixture that drew adults and children alike to the yard. Maria in particular would come up to the fence when people walked by.