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Police Blotter: NM State Police officer shot near Laguna


An Arizona man has been arrested for allegedly shooting and wounding a New Mexico State Police officer on I-40 near Laguna, authorities said Sunday, resulting in a traffic jam at least 22 miles long in the east-bound lanes.

Police said the female officer suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was treated at a hospital and released.

They said 28-year-old Robert Nelson of Scottsdale was booked into the Cibola County Detention Center on suspicion of attempted murder, aggravated battery upon peace officer, shooting from a motor vehicle and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer.

Nelson was the driver of a pickup truck that was stopped on I-40 about 9:30 a.m. Saturday, according to police.

They said Nelson appeared to fire multiple rounds at the police officer’s head as she approached his vehicle. The officer was struck by bullets, but was able to return fire.

Police said Nelson fled the scene on I-40 and the officer, despite her injuries, got back into to her vehicle and chased him.

After a short pursuit, Nelson stopped on the highway near the pueblo of Laguna, some 47 miles west of Albuquerque.

Laguna police officers arrived on scene and Nelson was arrested.

Navajo Co. Sheriff’s report – Aug. 30 to Sept. 10

HOBROOK – The Navajo County Sheriff’s Office reports the following activity from Aug. 30 to Sept. 10.

  • On Sept. 7, deputies made a traffic stop in the area of Holbrook. While conducting their investigation it was discovered the driver, Noel Ruiz-Jimenez, 39, of Los Lunas, New Mexico, was under the influence of alcohol. Deputies discovered an open container and a usable amount of cocaine. Ruiz-Jimenez was arrested for DUI, open container and possession of a dangerous drug.
  • On Sept. 7, a deputy conducted a traffic stop at State Route 260 and State Route 277 in the Heber-Overgaard area. Clinton Anderson, 58, was issued a criminal citation for excessive speed.
  • On Sept. 7, deputies and detectives received domestic dispute report in the area of Buffalo Ridge Lane in Snowflake. Andrew Thomas, 34, was arrested and booked in the Navajo County Annex for kidnapping and aggravated assault.
  • On Sept. 7, a deputy conducted a traffic stop on State Route 77 at milepost 345 in the Show Low area. Faustino Yonnie, 26, was issued a criminal citation for possession of drug paraphernalia.
  • On Sept. 9, deputies were called to the jail in Holbrook for a report of assault. Cynthia Benally, 44, of Kykotsmovi, Arizona, was arrested for assault on a corrections officer and assault with a dangerous instrument.
  • On Sept. 10, a deputy conducted a traffic stop by State Route 77 and White Mountain Lake Road in the White Mountain Lakes area. Jacob Freeman was arrested and booked into the Navajo County Annex for an outstanding warrant.
  • On Sept. 10, a deputy conducted a traffic stop in the area of US 60 and 8th Avenue in Show Low. Joshua Thomas, 26, was arrested and booked into the Navajo County Annex for DUI.



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