Body found in Nevada confirmed to be missing New Mexico woman

Suspect Jerry Jay

Farmington, N.M. – The body of missing New Mexico woman, Cecelia Finona, was identified in Clark County, Nevada. Farmington police detectives have been working closely with several law enforcement agencies, including Sparks Police Department and Las Vegas Metro Police Department, in their search for Cecelia since she went missing in late May of 2019. The primary person of interest in the case, Jerry Jay, is still in custody on charges in Nevada from June of 2019. The Farmington Police Department filed the charges of Murder in the 1st degree, Kidnapping 1st degree, and Tampering with Evidence against Jay on July 2, 2021.

Cecelia was last seen by family members on May 30, 2019, and was reported missing on June 1, 2019. Her boyfriend, 59-year-old Jerry Jay, was also missing from the residence, and evidence found at the home led Farmington detectives to be very concerned for the safety of Cecelia. Sparks PD arrested Jay on June 5, 2019, on charges of Possession of a Credit Card without Owner’s Consent and Fraudulent Use of a Credit or Debit Card. Remains were located in Clark County, Nevada, by a citizen in February of 2021; those remains were identified as Cecelia through DNA on June 30.

Farmington Police Chief Steve Hebbe issued the following statement regarding this case, “Today we have very mixed feelings. This marks the ending of two years of searching, and we’re deeply saddened at the outcome. We will continue working as we have since the day she disappeared to ensure the person responsible for this is held accountable. We offer our most heartfelt condolences to Cecelia’s family and friends.”

Cecelia was a US Army veteran. Family and friends describe her as a good-hearted person who cared about people and a leader in the community who made a difference. 

The Farmington Police Department would like to thank Sparks Police Department, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, the Clark County Coroner’s Office, the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office Forensic Division, and the 11th Judicial District Attorney’s Office for their assistance in the case. FPD would also like to thank the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office for their help with multiple searches in the area.

Farmington Police Department’s Reverse Trick or Treating

Farmington, N.M. – The Farmington Police Department is bringing a fun, new Halloween activity to the community — reverse trick-or-treating! Parents can download and print FPD’s pumpkin coloring page at or pick up a copy in FPD’s lobby Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Kids are invited to use their imaginations to create spooktacular jack-o’-lanterns then hang them on their front door.  While Farmington police officers are out patrolling, they’ll also be hunting for those pumpkins! The officers will leave a bag of treats and a sticker on each pumpkin they find.

Chief Hebbe explained, “Halloween looks a little different this year due to the pandemic, but that doesn’t mean it’s been canceled or we can’t have fun. It’s important for our community to continue to be positive for our kids and show them that we can still have a fun and memorable time.”  

Farmington officers will be delivering goodies to homes displaying their decorated pumpkins from Wednesday, October 28, until Wednesday, November 4.  FPD asks that everyone only decorates one pumpkin per child in the house, so they’re able to get treat bags to as many children as possible. 

The community’s safety is of the utmost importance to FPD, therefore, candy deliveries will include little to no contact, and FPD employees and volunteers will prepare all treat bags in accordance with COVID-Safe Practices.

For citizens who live in more rural areas, FPD is asking them to bring their decorated pumpkins into the police department lobby at 900 Municipal Dr.

And don’t forget to show off those decorated pumpkins! FPD wants to see them posted on social media with the hashtag #FPDpumpkins! For questions or concerns, please contact Public Information Officer Nicole Brown at


Farmington Police respond to shots fired

Farmington, N.M. – Farmington police officers have one man detained after firing several gunshots from his yard and inside his home late Saturday night. Multiple calls from residents in the area of 16th St. and Farmington Ave. of shots fired were reported Saturday evening. On arrival, officers learned that a man, 60-year-old Jack Pryor of Farmington, was experiencing a crisis and firing rounds from several different guns in the front and back yards, and inside his home. Officers set up a perimeter of the area, and the SWAT team responded. While attempting to communicate with the man, he fired a single shot in the direction of a SWAT vehicle. The round struck an object near the vehicle, and injured no one. Officers spoke with the man until they detained peacefully. He was transported to San Juan Regional Medical Center for treatment, and detectives are still investigating the incident.

The Farmington Police Department wants to encourage anyone experiencing a crisis to call 800-273-8255 or find a local behavioral health provider at

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


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

TBL 3.jpg

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



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!