For Immediate Release
July 8, 2022
State Police Officers in Los Lunas Make Drug Arrest
Los Lunas, NM – On June 28, 2022, at around 8:30 a.m., two State Police officers were patrolling in one marked State Police patrol unit on West Brazaro near Monterey Boulevard in Los Lunas. While patrolling the officers saw a silver Infinity sedan parked facing the wrong way on the road in front of a residence with the doors and hood open. Two males were standing in front of the vehicle with a couple of backpacks and containers on the ground outside the driver’s side door.
The officers stopped and the passenger officer got out of the patrol unit and approached the two males. The males slammed the hood shut and ran to get inside the Infinity. The male who got into the driver seat placed the vehicle in reverse and accelerated away from the officer in a reckless manner driving in reverse down westbound West Brazaro with the doors of the vehicle still open. The officer driving the patrol unit pursued and immediately tried to perform a pursuit intervention technique (PIT) on the vehicle which was still driving in reverse. The PIT was not successful, and the Infinity continued westbound on West Brazaro. The officer chose to terminate the pursuit due to the heavy morning traffic on nearby Monterey Boulevard.
The officer driving returned to the scene where the passenger officer had remained. The bags and containers that were laying in the middle of the road next to the Infinity before it fled were taken as evidence. While the officers were inventorying the items, they located 2 small scales consistent with drug distribution, over 425 dollars in cash, over 600 suspected Fentanyl pills, a bag of Marijuana, a bag of suspected Methamphetamine, two handgun magazines, 270 rounds of ammunition and a visa card with the name Armando Venegas on it.
Through investigation and driver’s license photo, officers identified Armando Venegas, 32, of Los Lunas as the male who ran and drove the Infinity away from officers. An arrest warrant was issued by the Belen Magistrate Court charging Venegas with Reckless Driving, Aggravated Fleeing, Distribution of Fentanyl, and Distribution of Methamphetamine. On June 30th, the New Mexico State Police officers tracked down Armando Venegas. He was arrested without incident and booked into the Valencia County Detention Center on his outstanding warrant.
“This is excellent community caretaking and fine police work by my officers,” said Tim Johnson, Chief of the New Mexico State Police. “Their diligence is an example of the dedication they have for taking drug dealers and those who would harm our communities off our streets.”
The drugs and ammunition have been sent to the State Forensic Laboratory for DNA testing. This case remains under investigation by the New Mexico State Police Uniform Bureau with assistance from the New Mexico State Police Auto Theft Unit.