Suspect in deadly movie theater shooting to remain in jail until trial

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Enrique Padilla faced a judge Monday, eight days after allegedly shooting and killing a man over movie seats. Padilla was also hurt in that theater shooting. 

Now, he’s charged with first-degree murder. Prosecutors argued Monday he’s too dangerous to be released before trial.

The state did not waste any time calling Padilla a danger to society, saying he was callous, and had no regard for human life that night. They also said there were simply no conditions to keep the public safe pending trial.

While Padilla has no criminal history other than this shooting, the state went through the criminal complaint. They say, when you boil it down, he fired eight shots into a crowded theater following an argument over movie seats.

Two of those shots hit and killed 52-year-old Michael Tenorio. The state said it was “pure luck” that no one else was hit or killed. 

Meanwhile, the defense took a different approach arguing self-defense. They say Tenorio got up and pushed Padilla against the wall before a weapon was produced. 

“There were witnesses talking about the laser from the firearm going throughout the theater. That type of behavior does create a very dangerous situation, so the state has met that burden,” said Second Judicial District Judge Emeterio Rudolfo.

Ultimately, the judge disagreed with Padilla’s self-defense claim saying he can’t create the situation by starting a fight, and throwing popcorn at Tenorio and his wife, and then claim self-defense. 

The judge granted the pretrial detention motion. 

Padilla will remain behind bars until his trial.