Arizona man accused of kidnapping wife, threatening to kill 7-year-old son

Feb 28, 2019, 12:15 PM
(New Mexico State Police photo)...
(New Mexico State Police photo)
(New Mexico State Police photo)

PHOENIX — An Arizona man was shot and wounded in New Mexico during a standoff with police when he threatened to kill his 7-year-old son after allegedly kidnapping his wife.

James Kirkland, a 39-year-old Kingman man, is facing numerous state and federal charges after the Wednesday morning standoff in Hatch, New Mexico.

Kirkland encountered officers around 8 a.m. after he was pulled over for bypassing a Border Patrol checkpoint by driving the wrong way on an interstate.

When Kirkland stopped the vehicle, his wife bolted from the car and he armed himself and barricaded inside the vehicle, holding his son hostage, police said in a statement.

Kirkland also told police that he was going to kill his son and then himself and placed his son between himself and officers.

An officer then shot Kirkland and rescued the son. He was taken to a hospital and was expected to survive his injuries. The child, wife and officers were not injured in the shooting.

The statement said New Mexico officers weren’t aware during the incident that the couple was under investigation by the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office in an unspecified Louisiana matter and that the wife had communicated to her employer that Kirkland had kidnapped her.

The son and wife will not be identified by New Mexico police. The officer who shot Kirkland was placed on standard leave.

An investigation is ongoing.

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Arizona man accused of kidnapping wife, threatening to kill 7-year-old son