Cop is suspect in burglary

-A A +A

Veteran officer placed on leave

By Carol A. Clark

Longtime Los Alamos Police Det. Shari (Sharon)  Mills, 53, is the prime suspect in an aggravated burglary case at the home of her former husband, Lt. Scott Mills, also a Los Alamos police officer.

Officers took photographs and dusted for fingerprints at Lt. Mills’ home at 1415 41st St., Thursday evening.

LAPD Chief Wayne Torpy called in New Mexico State Police to investigate the case after Det. Mills became a suspect.

“I can’t comment as to an ongoing investigation that is being conducted by the state police, however, I have placed Det. Mills on administrative leave while that investigation is going on,” Torpy said.

“The LAPD is conducting a parallel administrative investigation into the alleged misconduct of Det. Mills and we will take the appropriate action at the conclusion of both investigations.”

Officers obtained a search warrant from Magistrate Court Judge Pat Casados Thursday evening to enter Det. Mills’ doublewide mobile home at 90 Sherwood Blvd., in White Rock.

According to the search warrant affidavit, LAPD Sgt. Andrew Goldie contacted detective division supervisor Sgt. Frederico Rascon at 6:30 p.m. Thursday informing him that Lt. Mills’ home had been burglarized. Rascon responded to the scene where Lt. Mills and other officers were gathered.

Rascon stated in the court document that he canvassed the area, speaking with neighbors and workers. They reported seeing various people near Lt. Mills’ house in recent days. One neighbor mentioned seeing a woman near the home Monday.

Lt. Mills had been out of town for a couple of weeks. According to the affidavit, there was a marked police unit parked in the driveway of Lt. Mills’ home in front of his carport. The burglar gained entry through the door on the north side of the home, beneath the carport. The bottom left corner window of the door was broken and it appeared that someone reached in and unlocked the door to gain entry.

Items listed in the search warrant affidavit as stolen from the home include firearms, computers and other electronic equipment, knives, money, documents and other items identified as belonging to Lt. Mills.

Lt. Mills is listed in the affidavit as stating that three handguns were missing from his bedroom — a Glock 31 .357, a Taurus 5 shot hammerless .38 special in a tan leather holster that also was taken, and a Glock 22 .40 in a black leather holster. The three handguns are valued at an estimated $500, according to court documents. Also reported stolen from the bedroom was an estimated $400-$500 cash in an envelope.

A UV Brown Gateway UC73 laptop computer with an estimated value of $1,200 was reported stolen from a table in the living room of the home. A handmade knife also was reported stolen.

Police confiscated a white board 55 MPH sign Lt. Mills had on his refrigerator, which he stated had been given to him by Det. Mills. It had two indentations in it that were not there before the burglary.

Rascon stated in the affidavit that he received a text message from Det. Mills at about 8:20 p.m. Thursday, which said, “I remember breaking the glass at Scott’s door but I don’t remember anything after that except walking around his house.”

According to court documents, Rascon contacted his supervisors and then drove to Det. Mills’ trailer to question her about her text message.   

“On my arrival to the residence I made contact with Sharon Mills who was crying and told me she wanted to be honest about the whole thing and told me that she had a gun in her home that was a small 9mm Glock … I stopped her from making any more comments and read her (her) Miranda Rights, which she invoked and did not want to say anything further,” Rascon said.

Court documents further state that Det. Mills gave her duty weapon and shotgun to Deputy Chief Kevin Purtymun earlier that day, at which time she reportedly told him there were no other guns in her home.

In setting forth reasons why a nighttime search of Det. Mills’ home was necessary, the affidavit stated, “If the search is not conducted tonight there is a strong possibility that any evidence located at 90 Sherwood will be destroyed or discarded.”

The night search was granted and police confiscated the following property from Det. Mills’ home pursuant to that warrant:

• Glock 26 9mm with a leather holster and one full magazine of ammunition;

• Glock 22 .40 with a leather holster and one full magazine of ammunition;

• Taurus .38 with five rounds of ammunition;

• Glock 17 9mm with plastic case and one full magazine of ammunition and one empty magazine;

• One box of 9mm ammunition; and

• A 10-inch homemade knife with a leather sheath.