The Jal Police Department arrested a man Friday on his reported eighth intoxicated driving offense and other charges after a shots fired incident near South 6th Street, involving a broken truck window.
Jesus P. Herrera, 46, of Jal, was charged with aggravated driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs (eighth offense), a second-degree felony; felon in possession of a firearm and shooting at dwelling or occupied building; shooting at or from a motor vehicle, fourth-degree felonies; resisting, evading or obstructing an officer, negligent use of a deadly weapon and open container.
He was also charged with speeding, no registration, no insurance and no driver’s license. Herrera was booked at the Jal City Jail.
Around 10:15 p.m. Friday, Jal police responded to a shots fired call in the area of 6th Street and Minnesota Avenue near where an officer later saw a vehicle traveling 42 mph in a 25 mph zone. According to the criminal complaint, the officer tried to pull over the driver, but it continued several streets before stopping on Alameda Street, where the driver got out and tried to go towards a house. The driver, identified as Herrera, denied driving fast.
“Mr. Herrera stated that he had been drinking and decided to drive home and was not speeding,” the arresting officer wrote. “Mr. Herrera argued that he didn’t do anything wrong, but drive home.”
The officer wrote he had bloodshot watery eyes and “very slurred” speech. Herrera was arrested after he allegedly became uncooperative during sobriety tests and he later refused a breath test. Police found a Seagram’s 7 whiskey bottle, described as “3/4 empty” and a 12-gauge shotgun inside the vehicle with shells.
“Upon review of his criminal history, he was charged with his 7th or subsequent driving while under the influence by Hobbs Police Department in November of 2009,” the officer wrote. “The vehicle he was driving had a registration suspended/expired and no insurance since June 2017.”
It also notes Herrera holds driver’s licenses in New Mexico and Texas that are both currently invalid/revoked.
The police department additionally investigated a broken truck window at the 600 block of South 6th Street on Friday where the owner reported finding his window was shot out after arriving home. Police stated the damage was “consistent” with being shot with a shotgun and its direction was from the street.
On Monday, Jal Police Chief Mauricio Valeriano said a judge set a “no bond” on Herrera before his arraignment, which is scheduled for today. Herrera remained at the Jal City Jail as of Monday.
Kelly Farrell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.