Public Safety

  • ’Genesis’ nets drugs, arrests

    A four-month operation by Los Alamos Police Department netted 10 arrest warrants and 8 search warrants connected to drug trafficking and distribution in a recent operation.
    LAPD’s “Operation Genesis” began in October and raids on several local suspected drug houses have taken place in recent days. LAPD reported that its officers conducted hundreds of hours of surveillance and specialized investigations on suspected local drug dealers.
    According to information provided by LAPD, detectives have already seized methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, controlled prescription medications, marijuana wax and marijuana during Operation Genesis.
    “I want to thank all of the officers and detectives involved for their efforts in combating the illegal drug culture in our community,” said commander Oliver Morris. “Our investigators have information that several of these suspects have also been allegedly selling drugs to our community’s youth at Los Alamos High School and Los Alamos Middle School. I also want our citizens to realize our youth have access to almost any type of drug imaginable.”
    Morris said LAPD has worked hard and is committed to combating the local drug problem with “every resource available” to help provide a safe community for youth.

  • LAPD honors its finest

    Monday was a busy day for the Los Alamos Police Department during ceremony at Magistrate Court.
    Magistrate Court Judge Pat Casados officiated a special swearing-in ceremony for five of Los Alamos’ top officers.
    During the ceremony Detective Sergeant Oliver Morris. Morris, a veteran of LAPD, was promoted to Commander.
    Tom Beyer also received promotion to public service aide.
    Also, a pair of officers were sworn into the force Monday, including Cpl. Matt Lyon and Officer Gabriel Nieto and former jailer David Bradshaw became a new police officer on the force.

  • More embezzlement cases go to LA court

    Suspects with same last name are accused of committing different crimes in a rash of embezzlement cases around Los Alamos County.
    A Cordova resident allegedly tried to steal a car from a Los Alamos rental car agency via paperwork recently. However, the woman who made the initial complaint, Martha F. Romero, was eventually accused of the crime herself and has a preliminary hearing in Los Alamos Magistrate Court Jan. 27.
    Her hearing will determine whether or not if her case will be continued on to district court.
    In July, Romero, 39, allegedly took possession of a 2014 Hyundai Elantra from the Enterprise Car Rental, located at the Los Alamos Airport.
    The car was paid for through Romero’s insurance company while her own car underwent repairs. According to court records, she was only to have the car until Sept. 12.
    When Romero failed to appear at the agency on that date, the agency tried to make contact with her on numerous occasions via telephone and regular mail, but to no avail.
    When police made contact with the claims adjuster, the claims adjuster said Romero opted to meet him in another location that was not her residence, so he did not actually have an address for her on file. All the agency had was a P.O. box and a phone number.

  • Police Beat 1-9-15

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, server a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Jan. 1

    5:06 p.m. — Martha Romero, 39, of Cordova was arrested for embezzlement (more than $2,500 less than $20,000) at the Los Alamos Airport at 5:06 p.m.

    11:50 p.m. — Jonathan Wilke, 34. arrested for assaulting a police officer at 42nd Street and Urban Street. On Jan. 7, Wilke was also brought in on a municipal court warrant at 1:31 p.m. on Jan. 7.

    Jan. 2

    10:51 a.m. — Davy Sparks, 41, of Los Alamos was arrested for assault against a household member in the 4000 block of Alabama Avenue.

    6:06 p.m. — Renee Cata, 41, of Española was arrested on a magistrate court bench warrant at the Los Alamos Justice Center.

    Jan. 4

    11:26 p.m. — An 86-year-old Los Alamos man reported to police one of his firearms were stolen, a firearm that is estimated to be worth less than $2,500.

    Jan. 6

  • Police Beat 1-4-15

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, server a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Dec. 20
    1:24 p.m. — Police arrested a 15-year-old Los Alamos boy for criminal sexual contact with a minor, another 13-year-old boy.

    Dec. 27
    1:10 p.m. — Police reported that a 60-year-old Bethesda man was injured in a car accident at the intersection of 20th Street and Central Avenue.

    Dec. 28
    7:44 p.m. — A 25-year-old Los Alamos woman reported to police her car was broken into on Capulin Road.

    Dec. 29
    11:34 a.m. — Benjamin Herman, 40, of Chamisal was arrested through a misdemeanor warrant from another jurisdiction at the Los Alamos County Probation Office. The original charges were for marijuana possession on Oct. 4 at the intersection of 36th Street and Arizona Avenue.

  • Prescribed pile burns in Bayo Canyon are coming

    If you’re planning on walking off some pounds after the holidays, you might want to avoid the Bayo Canyon trailhead for a few days until things cool off.
    The Los Alamos Fire Department recently announced that it will have a prescribed burn in the area Jan. 9-10.
    According to LAFD’s Wildlands Division Chief Ramon Garcia, residents are still allowed to access the area, but they should be prepared for smoke.
    The LAFD, along with the fire crews from the U.S. Forest Service, have spent the last months clearing the area and have arranged dead wood and other flammable debris into 4-by-4 foot piles along the trail, and come Jan. 9, they’re all going up in smoke during a carefully monitored operation.
    The fire will happen during the day, Garcia said.
    Crews are waiting until Jan. 9 because the more snow and rain they get in the area, the safer the operation will be.
    The area comprises about 60 to 70 acres of scrub and trees.

  • Police Beat 12-19-14

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, served a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Dec. 16

    10:47 p.m. — Dustin Nelson, 25, of Los Alamos was arrested through a Los Alamos Municipal Court warrant at the Los Alamos Justice Center. The original charge was aggravated operating a vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor at Canyon Road on May 18.

    Dec. 11

    10:22 p.m. — Kenneth Hagedorn, 33 of Los Alamos was arrested for aggravated assault in the 1000 block of Sioux.

    Dec. 12

    12:06 p.m. — A 59-year-old Los Alamos man reported to police he was the victim of criminal damage to property (less than $1000) at Dogwood Street.

    9:46 p.m. — A 17-year-old Farmington teen was arrested on a misdemeanor warrant from another jurisdiction at the Los Alamos police station.

    10 p.m. — Gilbert Romero, 33 of Cordova was arrested for unlawful use of a license and driving when privilege to do so has been withdrawn. Defendant was arrested on Trinity Drive.

  • Two sought in separate embezzlement schemes

    Police recently issued an arrest warrant for an employee who worked at Smith’s Grocery on Trinity Avenue.
    The employee, a cashier named Theresa J. Watson that worked at the Los Alamos store, is accused of stealing about a thousand dollars through a scheme that involved voiding out items she scanned through her register, according to store management.
    Her managers caught onto her scheme in September, when they noted Watson was racking up a high number of voided transactions at her station.
    According to police, a videotape revealed how she carried out her plan. Watson would scan in all of the customer’s items, then she would then give that price to the customer.
    Then, when the customer was not looking, Watson would void out an item, but the customer would still pay the full price for their groceries and other items.
    The management also noted Watson only did this with cash transactions, allegedly in order to better cover her tracks.
    Another odd detail that gave away Watson’s embezzlement scheme is that Watson would total the transactions in such a way that the customers always seemed to have exact change. Management apparently recorded over a hundred transactions that occurred this way.

  • Police dept. honors its top performers of year

    The Los Alamos Police Department hosted its first awards banquet Saturday at Fuller Lodge to honor employees for their performance and service to the community.
    A total of 35 awards were handed out for those displaying outstanding customer service and initiative. Awards included recognition for developing programs to assist the homeless and victims of domestic violence, locating lost and injured hikers, solving several crime sprees, and maintaining excellence in various administrative duties.
    Further, LAPD recognized eight employees in seven different categories at the banquet for being the best in their fields for the year.
    Chief Dino Sgambellone, who handed out awards, said it was important to recognize those who went “above and beyond” while performing day-to-day operations.

    Here are the top awards given at the LAPD banquet:

    Civilian of the Year

    Connie Salazar, senior office specialist

    Public Service Aide of the Year

    Tom Beyer

    Detention Office of the Year

    David Bradshaw

    Dispatcher of the Year

    Angela Cordova

    Detective of the Year

    Ben Hinrichs

    Officer of the Year

    David Boe

    Supervisor of the Year

    Kate Stoddard, consolidated dispatch center and Sgt. Oliver Morris

  • Cash stolen from charity collection

    They don’t know when or how it went missing, all the owner and the employees of the Manhattan Project restaurant know is the money is gone.
    Sometime last week, someone helped themselves to the Manhattan Project’s “Horses For Heroes” contribution jar. According to restaurant owner Victor Medina, the jar was sitting at the hostess desk when someone discovered all the fives 10s and 20s were missing.
    According to Medina, about $200 was taken.
    “You left all the dollar bills and for this we are thankful, but you took all the $5, $10 & $20s out of the jar at the hostess station located at the front of the restaurant. Please consider returning the money, “ wrote Medina in a letter to the local media.
    Medina, who’s been around horses all his life, said he first got involved with the Horses For Heroes program when they did a presentation at the Rotary Club of Los Alamos. At one point, Medina and some other volunteers went down to the Santa Fe ranch where the HFH program is based and cleared land for them as well as doing other chores.
    Medina and the others also donated tools and other equipment the ranch may need.
    For Medina, a disabled Vietnam veteran, the organization and what its trying to do for veterans just made sense to him.