Police subdue unruly man

Navajo Times

WINDOW ROCK, May 24, 2012

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M cKinley County Sheriff's deputies responded to a call for assistance on May 22 in Yah-Ta-Hey, N.M., about a man who was intoxicated and being disorderly.

When they arrived, they talked to Julie Smith, the owner of the residence, who said Craig Chipman, 43, who was renting a room, had become destructive and had been drinking.

The officers saw Chipman outside the residence but when he saw them, he ran back into the house. He then went to a window and began yelling outside to police, saying he wasn't coming out.

After being asked several times to leave the building, officers went in through the front door and found Chipman in the hallway. He continued to be uncooperative and one of the deputies used a Taser to keep him from grabbing anything that could be used as a weapon.

He was then placed in handcuffs. A search of his room uncovered over an ounce of a green leafy substance and a stainless silver pipe.

He was charged with possession of marijuana and resisting, evading and obstructing an officer.


Bus crash injures students

A school bus crash on May 15 in Shonto, Ariz., sent several Kayenta Unified School District students to the Tuba City hospital for treatment for minor injuries.

Navajo Nation Police were called to the scene of the accident about 4:57 p.m. on Navajo Route 6320. The school bus had stopped to drop off a student when a pickup truck, driven by Sally M. Charley, no age given, of Shonto, collided with it from the rear.

Police said there were 26 students in the bus at the time. Some of the students were treated at the scene and released to their parents.


Police investigate death of 18-year-old

Navajo police are investigating the death of an 18-year-old girl in Beclabito on May 19.

When police arrived on the scene, they found Shantelle Benally dead at the scene.

An investigation revealed that her body had been found by the mother and that the father was under the influence of liquor.

Family members told police that the father, Stanford Benally, 40, had given the victim and minor children in the family hard liquor mixed with beer and energy drinks.


Man invades home

A home invasion in the Tuba City area on May 17 resulted in a man being taken to the hospital with a stab wound.

Police said they received a report about 2:30 a.m. that an unknown man had forced himself into the residence by going through a bedroom window and terrorized the family in the house until they were able to subdue him.

When police arrived on the scene, they found Kristopher Goldtooth, 22, of the Yellowman Trailer Court, being held down by members of the Spencer family.

They also discovered that one of the family members, Patrick Spencer, 47, had been stabbed in the throat.

Goldtooth was arrested for aggravated battery.


Woman battered in Crownpoint

On May 3, police in Crownpoint received a call from emergency room personnel at the Crownpoint hospital who reported that a woman had been brought in who was battered.

The woman, Charlene Johnson, 34, of Crownpoint, later told police that she was asleep at her home when she heard someone banging on the door about 2 a.m. and yelling.

When she went to the door, she discovered Eli Ramone, 26, of Pueblo Pintado. She went outside and told him several times to leave but he refused and got upset and grabbed her by the arm and then hit her in the face with an unknown object.

She told police she lost consciousness and fell to the ground. When she woke up, she had injuries to her face and body.

Medical staff at the hospital said she had bruises to her face, as well as to her elbow, knee and back area.

The case is still under investigation.


Rollover kills woman, injures baby

A rollover on Interstate 40 near Lupton, Ariz., on May 20 resulted in the death of a 33 year-old Mentmore, N.M., woman.

Navajo police identified the victim as Kimberly Jackson.

An investigation revealed that the vehicle, driven by Tasha Nazwood, 18, of Mentmore, was going west by mile marker 359 when it ran off the road onto the shoulder.

The left rear tire treads came off and the driver lost control and the vehicle rolled over several times.

The victim and a nine-month old baby in the back of the vehicle were ejected. The driver and her brother, Timothy Nazwood, were treated at the Gallup Indian Medical Center and released.

The baby was flown to the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque.


Car crash kills woman

Another vehicle fatality occurred on May 14 one mile west of the housing area at Querino Canyon near Sanders, Ariz.

The victim was identified by police as Daven Montgomery, no age given, of Pine Springs, Ariz.

An investigation revealed that the car, driven by Travis Begay, 24, of Pine Springs, was traveling east on a dirt road at a high rate of speed when the driver lost control and went off onto the shoulder, hit an embankment and then rolled over several times.

The victim was ejected from the vehicle. Police said alcohol appeared to be a contributing factor to the accident. The case is still under investigation.





N.M. high court upholds murder conviction

The New Mexico Supreme Court this week issued an ruling upholding the murder conviction of Harrison Largo for the May 20, 2008, murder of Frieda Smith.

According to police reports, Largo and Smith had a 20-year long on-and-off again relationship when he showed up at her trailer still drunk from the night before.

The two had a confrontation after which Smith was shot and later died of gunshot wounds.

But before she died, her mother had called 911 while Smith's neighbor, Stevic Jim, tried to help control the bleeding.

While talking to the 911 operator, the mother gave the phone to Jim who asked Smith who shot her and she said "Harrison."

Smith was still alive when McKinley County Sheriff deputies arrived on the scene and told them that Largo was headed to Thoreau High School to shoot her kids. The high school immediately went into lockdown.

Smith also told deputies that Largo was the one who shot her.

While the district court refused to allow anything about Thoreau High School into the trial, the statements given by Smith that Largo was the shooter was allowed.

Largo received a life sentence for the murder and three years for tampering with evidence.

Largo's attorney filed an appeal, arguing that the court should not have allowed the statements from Smith identifying Largo as the shooter into evidence because it was viewed as testimonial and violated Largo's constitutional right to confront his accusers.

The Supreme Court, however, ruled against him, pointing out that when Smith made the statements she was in considerable pain, bleeding from a mortal gunshot wound to the abdomen and had difficulty breath and talking.

"Such a severely injured victim suggests that the answers to the questions were merely reflexive, with no purpose at all, much less a testimonial one," the ruling stated.


'Operation Yé'iitsoh' defendants sentenced

ALBUQUERQUE - On May 14, a federal judge sentenced three defendants to prison based on their drug trafficking convictions, according to the U.S attorney's office.

The defendants were among nine individuals who were arrested on Oct. 18, 2010, as a result of a five-month investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and Bureau of Indian Affairs, Office of Justice Services, that was initiated in May 2010 at the request of the Navajo Nation's Division of Public Safety and for the purpose of combating the growing drug trafficking problem in and around the Navajo Reservation.

Georgia Goodson, 37, of Prewitt, N.M., was sentenced to 10 years in prison, while her husband Michael Goodson, 48, received a five-year prison sentence. They pleaded guilty in January 2012 to all seven counts of distribution of marijuana, methamphetamine and maintaining a place for the distribution of controlled substances.

Lance Rochlitz, 29, of Grants, N.M., was sentenced to three years based on his guilty plea in December 2011 charging him with distribution of methamphetamine.

Two other defendants are awaiting sentencing. Jason Jaramillo, 33, of Grants, N.M., pleaded guilty conspiracy to violate the federal drug laws and two distributions of methamphetamine. Gilbert Aragon, 34, also of Grants, N.M., pleaded guilty charging him with conspiracy to violate the federal drug laws and distribution of methamphetamine.

The arrests were the result of "Operation Yé'iitsoh," an investigation brought pursuant to the Native American Project, an initiative sponsored by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy's High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program and is supported by the DEA's Albuquerque District Office in partnership with the BIA and the NNDPS.


Red Valley man sentenced for rape

ALBUQUERQUE - Derrick Ivan Jim, 29, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Red Valley, Ariz., was sentenced May 16 to 30 years in prison for his rape conviction, according to the U.S. attorney's office.

Jim, a person previously unknown to the victim, arrived with one of the friends. The victim's friends observed that Jim seemed to be following the victim in and out of the residence during the course of the evening and into the night.

At one point in the early morning hours of Aug. 13, 2010, when the victim went into the residence, Jim followed her into the house and locked the door. He then dragged the victim into a back bedroom where he forcibly raped her.

During the assault, the victim attempted to fight Jim off while yelling out to her friends. After Jim escaped out the back door, the victim alerted her friends.

The victim and her friends reported the sexual assault to the Navajo Nation Department of Public Safety, and thereafter identified Jim as the rapist from a photo lineup.

During the defense case, Jim took the stand and denied raping the victim. Instead, Jim claimed that he and the victim had consensual sex.


ALBUQUERQUE

On May 18 in federal court in Santa Fe, N.M., Warren R. Dooley, 52, a member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Pinehill, N.M., entered a guilty plea to an assault with a dangerous weapon charge under a plea agreement with the U.S. attorney's office, according to a news release from the U.S. attorney.

At sentencing, he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years of imprisonment, a $250,000 fine and up to three years of supervised release.

Dooley remains on conditions of release under pretrial supervision pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.

Dooley pleaded guilty to assaulting a police officer for the Ramah Navajo Chapter on May 4, 2011, by repeatedly ramming his car into the patrol car occupied by the police officer in Pinehill.

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