Tucumcari officer charged with breaking and entering

CMI staff An off-duty Tucumcari police officer charged with breaking and entering and criminal damage to property surrendered Monday to New Mexico State Police in Tucumcari, said State Police Lt. Lance Bateman. Bateman said Pete Vargas, 32, was taken into custody at 1:30 p.m. at the Quay County Magistrate Court. Bateman said Vargas was processed […]

Melrose man dies in car accident

CNJ Staff A 63-year-old Melrose man was killed Monday afternoon in a two-vehicle accident about five miles east of Melrose on U.S. 60/84, according to Patrolman Lance Bateman of the New Mexico State Police. Bill Bovell was driving west in a 1992 Mercury passenger car on a two-lane portion of the highway when his vehicle […]

Police handle large fry order

CNJ Staff A tractor-trailer accident early Friday morning near St. Vrain resulted in the drug-related arrest of a Salt Lake City man, according to state police. Around 4 a.m. a tractor-trailer carrying frozen french fries traveling east on Highway 60/84 overturned and caught fire, state police officer Lance Bateman said. The driver, Hank Breitenbugher, 41, […]

State police: No fault in fatal crash

CNJ staff A New Mexico State Police investigation shows neither driver was at fault in a fatal June 19 head-on collision involving a Clovis fire truck and pickup, Patrolman Lance Bateman said on Sunday. Bateman said a narrow road, low visibility and an extreme weight difference between vehicles were all factors in the accident. LaRoy […]

Lightning strikes officers

Staff and Wire Reports PORTALES — New Mexico State Police Officers Lance Bateman and Clint Varnell had just finished helping two women and three small children from a vehicle in a flooded ditch. “I heard a loud crack and felt the pain on my head then went down,” Bateman said Wednesday from his bed at […]

Child, mother thrown from car

By Michelle Seeber A 5-year-old boy and his mother, both of Clovis, were in critical condition Sunday at Covenant Medical Center in Lubbock after being thrown from a pickup truck. Authorities said the pickup rolled 1 1/2 times near Clovis Airport. Janice Lea, 39, was driving east from Clovis on 21st Street in a 1971 […]

Pursuit policy was followed

By Darrell Todd Maurina New Mexico State Police Capt. Oscar Gonzalez said Wednesday all proper procedures were followed during a 100-mph car chase Tuesday morning and subsequent apprehension of the driver who fled into Barry Elementary School. “Our pursuit policy is very basic,” Gonzalez said. “We do have a policy of pursuit in every case […]