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Drug bust in San Ysidro
Trafficking, possession, paraphernalia, open container

—JOHN PAUL TRUJILLO, SHERIFF, SANDOVAL COUNTY
In April, Sandoval County Sheriff’s Office detectives proceeded to San Ysidro to make contact with a suspect in reference to complaints of narcotics use. The suspect, who was employed with the Village of San Ysidro, was at the time working in the village park with a coworker. Upon contact, two open containers of alcohol were found in the village vehicle. Upon further investigation, a small container, which contained marijuana, was found in the vehicle. Both people were taken into custody and charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and open container. Upon further investigation, consent to search was obtained on the first suspect’s residence, on Avenida San Luis, in San Ysidro.

Upon searching the residence, five marijuana plants were found growing in the suspect’s bedroom. Numerous other drug-paraphernalia items were located and seized. A woman in the residence and the suspect were further charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.


New phone scam plays on victims’ emotions

Attorney General Patricia Madrid has issued a warning about a new scam that has victimized some New Mexicans in recent weeks. In each of the reported cases, the scammer has claimed to be the victim’s family member, in some sort of trouble, and in immediate need of money. Furthermore, the scammer actually names the victim’s family member.

Madrid urges New Mexicans who receive calls like this to first get more information from the person calling. “As desperate as the person calling may sound, remain calm and try to get as much information as possible. If the person calling claims to be a family member, ask them personal questions that only your family will know, such as your middle name or where he was born,” said Madrid.

The Los Lunas mother received a call from a person claiming to be a dispatcher from the Arizona Highway Patrol who said her name was Kathy Richardson. “Kathy” asked the mother if she had a son by the name of Andy. “Kathy” said there had been a bad accident and that Andy was unconscious, had lost a lot of blood and needed to be airlifted to “Tucson Memorial Hospital.” “Kathy” also put a “Lieutenant Johnson” on the phone, who confirmed the accident. “Lieutenant Johnson” informed the mother that an eighteen-wheel truck had sideswiped Andy’s car and that the driver of the truck was drunk.

The mother reported that “Kathy” kept repeating how much blood Andy had lost and how time-critical it was for the mother to wire the money. “Kathy” even gave the mother the address of the nearest Western Union outlet in Los Lunas.

Once the mother reached the Western Union, “Kathy” called the mother’s cell phone, which the mother had said to call. “Kathy” asked the code numbers for the wire transfer. Once the transaction was made, “Kathy” told the mother to stay off her phone and keep the line open so that a “Dr. Kim” from “Tucson Memorial Hospital” could update her on Andy’s condition.

Extremely worried, the mother told her husband about the call, and he called another son and told him about the accident. The husband and son tried to look up the address of Tucson Memorial Hospital on the Internet, only to discover that there was no such facility. They tried contacting the Arizona Highway Department to ask about the accident, only to be told that there was no such report. The Arizona Highway Department also said they had no dispatcher named Kathy Richardson, nor a Lieutenant Johnson.

The mother called Western Union and asked about the status of the wire transfer, which totaled $1,028.00 ($950 plus a $78 wire-transfer fee.) The money had been picked up at 3:54 p.m. that day.

Madrid said, “In an emergency situation, you will never be required to pay for emergency services before they are given. If a caller claims to be reporting an emergency, ask their name, title, and what agency they are with. Do not call a number given to you by the caller, because they could be lying or have an accomplice waiting for a callback. Call information to confirm that the agency actually exists, then try contacting them yourself. Do not reveal your bank-account numbers, credit-card information, or other personal information over the phone in response to an unsolicited call. As difficult as it may seem, when you get a call like this, you should remain calm and remain vigilant. The scammer expects you to panic and that’s where the scam succeeds.”

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