Farmington police to conduct DWI checkpoints in September

Farmington, N.M. – Many Farmington police officers will be out throughout the month of September participating in DWI enforcement. This will include sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols all month long. The Farmington Police Department, in conjunction with other law enforcement agencies, continues to work hard to keep drunk drivers off our roads. As always, FPD wants to remind citizens to drink responsibly and always use a designated driver.

PRESS RELEASE: Suspect in fatal stabbing charged

Farmington, NM – Detectives with the Farmington Police Department have identified the suspect in yesterday’s fatal stabbing as 26-year-old Derrick Charley. Officers were dispatched around 6:22 p.m. to 1205 River Road in reference to a stabbing. When officers arrived on scene they located a male who had been stabbed. The man has been identified as 37-year-old Hector Luna-Holguin. Medics transported him to San Juan Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. Charley was located in the area and taken into custody. A warrant was issued for his arrest on an open count of homicide. Charley was arrested on the warrant and booked into the San Juan County Detention Center.

This incident remains under investigation. Further details will be released as they become available.

PRESS RELEASE: Farmington police investigating fatal stabbing

Farmington, NM – Farmington police are investigating a fatal stabbing that occurred this evening at Berg Park East. Officers were dispatched at approximately 6:22 p.m. to 1205 River Road in reference to a stabbing. When officers arrived on scene, they located a 37-year-old male who had been stabbed. The man was transported to San Juan Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. The suspect, a 26-year-old male, was located in the area and taken into custody. The incident remains under investigation. Further details will be released as they become available.

PRESS RELEASE: Farmington police seeking public assistance in missing person cold case

Farmington, NM – The Farmington Police Department is seeking information on the disappearance of Melanie James. James was last seen by her sister on Sunday, April 20, 2014 walking on Butler Avenue near McKinley Elementary School with an African American male. James’ sister did not recognize the male who was with her. By the time her sister was able to turn her vehicle around, James was gone. Family has not seen or heard from her since.

Family and friends would sometimes go days or even weeks without hearing from James, but by June it had been close to two months since anyone heard from her, which was out of character to go that long without phone contact. James’ mother called the Farmington Police Department on June 12, 2014 to report her daughter as a missing person.

It’s been nearly five years since anyone has seen or heard from James. Detectives followed up on tips and conducted interviews, but nothing led them to her. Over the years, leads in the case have been sporadic and investigative leads have been exhausted. The Farmington Police Department is reviewing this case again to determine if there are any other investigative avenues to follow.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Melanie James is urged to contact Detective Heather Chavez at (505) 566-2370 or non-emergency dispatch at (505) 334-6622. Anonymous tips may be submitted through the Farmington Police Department Detective Tip Hotline at (505) 599-1068.

The family of Melanie James is holding a community prayer vigil for Melanie and all the missing and murdered indigenous women and men on Saturday, April 20, 2019 from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at Orchard Park located at 105 N. Orchard in Farmington.

PRESS RELEASE: Nationally recognized speakers to present in San Juan County, advocates for cell-free roads

Hang Up and DriveFarmington, NM –  Nationally recognized speakers, Jacy Good and Steve Johnson, are coming to San Juan County to share their story and encourage others to hang up and drive. A free public presentation will take place on April 3 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the San Juan College Henderson Fine Arts Center. During that same week Jacy and Steve will also be speaking at area high schools.  The presentations were organized by the 11th Judicial District Courts, Farmington Police Department and the San Juan County Office of Emergency Management.

Jacy and Steve graduated from college in May 2008. A tragedy struck hours after receiving their diplomas. About halfway back to her childhood home in Lancaster, Pa. the car carrying Jacy and her parents was struck head-on by a tractor trailer as both entered an intersection with green lights. The truck had swerved to try to avoid a man coming from the intersecting road who attempted to turn left through a red light. That man was talking on his phone at the time.

Jacy’s parents never left the scene but an astounding series of fortunate events and unequalled medical care kept Jacy alive in the crumpled car, the ambulance ride and through 8 ½ hours of surgery. She was given a 10 percent chance of survival as she lay comatose and nearly unrecognizable in intensive care that first night. Steve spent 12 hours a day by her side through four months of hospitalization. Jacy’s laundry list of injuries have managed to heal through time and a healthy dose of titanium rods, plates and screws. Due to a traumatic brain injury, she is unable to use her left arm or lower leg and has minor lingering cognitive issues.

Less than a year after that life-altering tragedy, Jacy began to campaign for a cell phone ban in her native Pennsylvania. This unexpectedly triggered an avalanche of interview requests and public appearances. Since April 2010, Jacy has been on The Oprah Winfrey Show, a guest of Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon at the United Nations, a “Hero Among Us” in People Magazine, a speaker at Maria Shriver’s Women’s Conference, on NPR’s Car Talk and has been featured in dozens of articles, television news pieces and press conferences nationwide.

Since 2011, Jacy and Steve have spoken at over 850 events across the country to over 250,000 people. They encourage drivers to make safer choices, companies to develop and enforce cell phone policies and legislators to pass necessary laws to protect the public.

For more information about Jacy and Steve, visit hangupanddrive.com

 

Thin Blue Line Tree at the Festival of Trees, honoring fallen officers

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If you plan on attending this year’s Festival of Trees, be sure to stop by and see the Thin Blue Line Tree. The tree was created by Kristalee Keeling and her mom, Sheila Keeling, both of whom work in law enforcement. Kristalee, a community service officer with the Farmington Police Department and Sheila, a reserve deputy with the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, chose the theme as a way of paying respect and remembering the officers who lost their lives this year. To date, a total of 133 officers were killed in the line of duty; sixty were from gunfire. Kristalee explained, “We are hoping this tree will bring some reality to the public as to how many lives have been lost.”

Kristalee also recruited her sister, Twila Gibson, and FPD code compliance officer, Marc Kennedy, to help with decorating. The names and photos of officers killed since Thanksgiving have been placed by the tree along with a list of fallen K9s. In addition, there is a poster explaining the meaning of the thin blue line.

The Keelings would like to thank the following businesses for their contributions to the Thin Blue Line Tree: Chili’s, Dickey’s Barbeque Pit, Lowes, Home Depot, Chick-fil-A, D&S Kennels, La Mesa Chiropractic, Octopus Car Was, and Los Hermanitos.

The Festival of Trees runs from November 30 to December 3. For more information about this event, visit staurolite.pmsnm.org/fot

fot-schedule-2016

 

PRESS RELEASE: DWI checkpoints to be conducted in December

Farmington, NM – The Farmington Police Department, in partnership with surrounding law enforcement agencies, will be conducting DWI checkpoints during the month of December. These checkpoints are part of a continuing effort to reduce the number of injuries and deaths related to drunk driving. The checkpoints are in addition to FPD’s ongoing RADD campaign, which encourages citizens to call 911 to report aggressive and drunk drivers.

Please remember to drink responsibly and use a designated driver. FPD wishes everyone a safe and happy holiday season!

MEDIA ADVISORY: No Shave November Finale

On Wednesday, November 30th at 2:00 p.m. Born Barbers and Buffalo Wild Wings will partner with the Farmington Police Department for a No Shave November Finale.

Earlier this month, FPD announced that their officers were participating in No Shave November. The department decided that in addition to raising cancer awareness, their participation would benefit a local cause. After learning the Shop with Your Cop program was in need of donations, they were chosen to be the recipient of funds raised.

The fee for officers to participate in No Shave November was $25 to grow a goatee and $40 to grow a beard. The Farmington Police Department is pleased to announce they raised over $1,300 for the Shop with Your Cop program.

Following FPD’s Facebook post about No Shave November, local barber shop, Born Barbers, reached out and offered to partner with them for an end of the month event. During the event, Born Barbers will shave and clean up the officers for a $5.00 donation, which will be covered by an anonymous donor. The donations will also go to the Shop with Your Cop program.

What:              No Shave November Finale                                

Who:               Farmington Police Department & Born Barbers

When:             Wednesday, November 30, 2016, 2:00 p.m.

Where:           Born Barbers 2012 N. Hutton

PRESS RELEASE: Farmington police officers to undergo change in appearance, change will cost them

Farmington, NM – During the month of November, the community may notice a change in our officers’ appearance…

And the change is all for a good cause! The Farmington Police Department will be participating in No-Shave November. This is a time when individuals stop putting a razor to their face and grow out their hair to help raise cancer awareness. Money that’s typically spent on shaving and grooming products is instead, donated to cancer related organizations.

Farmington chief of police, Steve Hebbe, approved officers to take part in this initiative, with one caveat: they must pay to participate. The department’s involvement in No-Shave November will benefit not one, but two causes: cancer awareness and the local Shop with Your Cops program.

The idea was raised after one of FPD’s shift sergeants learned the program was looking for sponsors. Shop with Your Cops is an annual, multi-agency law enforcement event that helps create memorable Christmases for children in our community. The event is organized and managed by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office Foundation. The foundation’s 2016 goal is to provide EVERY child referred to the program, with the experience of shopping with their cops.

“Our community, like so many others, is experiencing economic hardships,” explained Georgette Allen, public information officer. “No-Shave November is close to the holidays. By participating in this initiative in such a way, we can help increase cancer awareness and provide assistance to families right here in San Juan County.”

Officers were informed of this fundraising event on November 4 and donations immediately came in, including from Chief Hebbe, who will be sporting a goatee. Minimum donations are $25 to grow a goatee and $40 to grow a beard. Officers must pay prior to growing their chosen facial hair.

Anyone who would like to make a donation to this year’s Shop with Your Cops event, can mail a check or money order to the SJCSO Foundation 211 S. Oliver Aztec, NM 87410. To make a donation with a debit or credit card, or for more information, email sjcsofoundation@gmail.com .

If you would like to make a donation toward a local cancer organization, visit sanjuanmedicalfoundation.com

PRESS RELEASE: Farmington Police Department to host women’s conference

Farmington, NM – The Farmington Police Department is working to support women in law enforcement. On November 9 and 10, FPD will host a conference aimed at providing quality training to female officers and non-sworn personnel who work in a law enforcement setting. The Southwest Women in Law Enforcement conference will bring together speakers from New Mexico, Colorado, Illinois and Texas. Topics at the two-day training will address issues faced by women working in a law enforcement setting. This is the first training of its kind to be hosted by FPD, and the department hopes to make it reoccurring. Chief Hebbe explained why the department decided to organize a conference of this nature, “In the United States, women account for approximately 12% of police, which is about where FPD falls. These numbers are not reflective of our population. There is a variety of reasons why women either don’t enter the field of law enforcement, or enter and leave prior to completing their careers to retirement.”

Some of the issues women in law enforcement face are the same as in any other profession: balancing family and career, gender bias and sexual harassment. Issues that are more prominent in law enforcement include a lack of peer acceptance, lack of mentors/role models and the perception that women have to “act like men” to fit in a male dominated field. Conference presenters will address such topics and share how they’ve overcome adversity, succeeding in their careers.

Law enforcement has evolved significantly over the last 50 years and is much more diverse than when women first entered the profession in the early 1900s. Farmington Police Department wants to see the profession continue to evolve. The department is actively looking to recruit more women and provide a work environment conducive to career success. “We are hosting this conference to provide support and encouragement to women who may be experiencing various challenges in their law enforcement careers,” said Chief Hebbe. “Women are an asset to the profession, and it’s time we recognize and appreciate their contributions. Studies have shown that female officers can be more effective in utilizing communication skills to defuse hostile situations. This is an area the department strives to improve on. In addition, women bring another perspective to the profession, making us (law enforcement) better as a whole and more reflective of our community.”

Eighty women from 18 different agencies throughout New Mexico and Colorado have registered to attend the conference. Sergeant Sierra Tafoya, lead conference organizer, said, “We are pleased with our first year’s registration numbers and hope to increase them in the upcoming years. We’ll be collecting feedback from attendees so that improvements can be made for future attendees.”

For more information about the SWWLE conference, visit swwle.org.

*Media is welcome to attend

Dates/Times:        November 9th (7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.) & 10th (8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)
Place:                     Farmington Civic Center