Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Home explosion leaves one injured

An explosion rocked the Colonial Park area Monday night, leaving one man hospitalized after police say he ran from a residence and then fought with an officer following the blast.

Records show Anthony Romo, 32, “pulled a pistol and attempted to shoot” at an off-duty police officer, Lt. James Gurule, who lives in the neighborhood and was trying to help after the explosion at 29 Paseo Village.

A police news release stated:

“The Officer responded to the deadly force, attempting to strike Romo with his marked police vehicle. Romo evaded the vehicle, which had impacted a fence. The Officer pulled his vehicle out of the area and was engaged again by Romo. The officer discharged a less-lethal bean bag shotgun at Romo, and became involved in a direct physical confrontation with Romo. Romo was eventually subdued, and was taken to Plains Regional Medical Center.”

Romo was then transferred to a Lubbock hospital due to the blast injuries from the explosion, police said.

An arrest warrant accuses Romo of assault, battery on a peace officer, being a felon in possession of a firearm, trafficking methamphetamine and possession of fentanyl with intent to distribute.

Court records show Romo pointed a gun at Gurule, but it malfunctioned when he attempted to fire. Romo then attempted to enter Gurule’s police unit, hitting the officer in the face with his fist. That’s when the officer deployed his bean-bag shotgun, which was the only weapon Gurule had available, records show.

Police recovered a pistol, bullets and what they believe to be methamphetamine and fentanyl near the scene.

The cause of the explosion was not immediately known. Fire investigators remained on the scene Tuesday.

Police said the incident was reported about 10 p.m. Monday. A caller described a loud “bang,” followed by smoke, a news release stated. “(T)he garage door to the residence was blown out.”

A neighbor who asked her name not be used because of safety concerns, said the man was running down the street after the explosion.

“His face was full of black smoke. His hair was burnt. His clothes were shredded. It was a crazy scene for sure,” the neighbor said.

Police and fire personnel responded to the area, and on arrival noted windows to the residence had been broken out by the explosion and the roof of the structure had collapsed into the living room.

Clovis Fire Chief Mike Nolen said the explosion “moved many of the walls” and brought down ceiling rafters. “The residence is very unstable,” he said.

Nolen said he could not tell what caused the explosion. He said the state fire marshal has taken over the investigation.

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