Rio Rancho police arrested an Albuquerque man on charges of fleeing in a chase in which he reached 100 mph in a residential area and crashed through a block wall.
Jeremy Chavez, 23, is charged with aggravated burglary, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, receiving a stolen firearm, aggravated fleeing from a police officer, possession of burglary tools, accident involving damage to a vehicle, resisting or evading police, possession of stolen property and unlawful carrying of a firearm. About half of the charges are felonies.
According to Rio Rancho Police reports, an officer checked the license plate of a black Ford F-350 traveling north on NM 528 about 4:20 a.m. April 1. The license plate was registered to a stolen vehicle, so the officer called for backup and followed the truck.
According to the reports, once other officers had arrived, he tried to pull it over near the intersection of NM 448 and Grande Vista Road. The truck sped away.
The F-350 turned right off the road, crashed through a cement-block fence around a backyard on Rio Norte Court, drove through the yard and crashed through another portion of the fence, dragging a lawn mower under the truck. It then went down an embankment to continue southbound on Rio Vista Drive, according to reports.
A sergeant was close enough to see the driver and give a description.
The truck drove through the residential area on Rio Vista Drive at speeds in excess of 100 mph, according to reports. The sergeant stopped the pursuit because of the high speeds.
Another officer turned back to check on the residents who owned the block fence and informed them he would file a crash report.
Police set up a perimeter and searched for the truck. After about 10 minutes, they found it unoccupied and stuck on an embankment on the shoulder of Don Julio Road.
Rio Rancho and Corrales police officers and Sandoval County deputies searched for the driver.
According to reports, police found Chavez in the backyard of a home in the 4900 block of Nickel Drive. Chavez went in the back door, came back out and was speaking to the resident in the backyard when a Rio Rancho officer ordered them both to get on the ground.
Instead, according to reports, both men ran back into the house. The suspected driver ran through the house and out the front door.
The officer detained the other man. The man told the officer he woke up to Chavez standing in the living room.
Chavez asked to use the phone, the man said, but he told Chavez to leave and led him to the backyard. The man said he didn’t listen to the officer’s commands because he was nervous.
Deputies located Chavez in the driveway and arrested him after deploying a stun gun on him. According to reports, they found a loaded handgun concealed in his pants pocket, and pliers on his person.
The sergeant confirmed Chavez was the man he’d seen driving the truck, according to reports.
When an officer checked the serial number on the gun, he found it had been stolen.
Police contacted the owner of the F-350, who said the truck had been gone for three weeks. The owner came to the scene, said nothing in the truck was his and gave permission to search the vehicle.
In the truck, police found three flathead screwdrivers with the tips filed down, Ford model keys and gloves. Those items and pliers are commonly used to break into vehicles, according to police.
The truck’s owner said a lift kit and brush guard had been removed from the truck since it has been stolen, and the sliding back window had been replaced with a solid one. Parts of the truck had been spray-painted black as well.
Police took Chavez to the hospital for a medical evaluation and then to Sandoval County Detention Center.