Town of Red River catches breath after deadly shooting

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RED RIVER, N.M. — The Town of Red River is catching its breath after a Memorial Day weekend tradition for over 40 years was cut short this year by a gunfight.

Many left the picturesque mountain town afterward, including hundreds of Banditos riders who posted video of themselves riding through town.

Still, people were also still trying to make the most of things Sunday in Red River.

“We don’t want to think everybody’s going to go out and shoot just because they have a motorcycle but it happens and it’s sad. But there are a lot of our brothers that are out there that are not troublemakers. They just want to ride and show off the beautiful work that they put into their bikes,” performer Marisol Flores said.

Now, as the dust settles, Red River Mayor Linda Calhoun says people are finally catching their breath.

“I think everybody has a real sense of relief and getting some rest, which always helps. So the town is quiet this morning, and everybody’s beginning to get back to normal,” Mayor Calhoun said.

Amid everything, the mayor still made the tough call to shut vendors in town and encourage main street businesses to close for the weekend.

“Well, it’s our big kickoff to the summer season and so everyone depends on that weekend because we just come off a very slow offseason from ski season. And I know several businesses I talked to had record-breaking days on Friday and Saturday. So to have to shut down and lose all the income from Sunday is very difficult,” Mayor Calhoun acknowledged.

She says talks of next year will start soon.

“We’ll start looking towards next Memorial Day weekend and see how that might shape up and see how it might look different but I think it’s safe to say it will look different,” Mayor Calhoun said.

The mayor says they had a heads-up of about 500 Bandidos members heading into town. However, she says there was double that and Bandidos members haven’t even been at the rally since 2019.


According to New Mexico State Police, Jacob Castillo, from Rio Rancho, is the only person facing a murder charge right now. The shooting left Castillo wounded.

Christopher Garcia, from Texas, was also hurt. Police arrested him on unrelated drug charges.

Matthew Jackson, also from Texas, was arrested for unrelated charges as well.

Police identified all three people who died as members of the Bandidos or the Waterdogs from New Mexico.

Officials say they could charge more people down the line as well.

The three suspects will likely appear in Taos County court as early as Tuesday.