A repeat Hobbs offender was sentenced to six years in federal prison after pleading guilty to being in possession of firearms and ammunition.
Ruben Flores, 41, was arrested on July 5, 2019 for receipt, transportation, or possession of a firearm or destructive device by a felon, a fourth-degree felony; and negligent use of a deadly weapon, a misdemeanor. He pleaded guilty on April 23, and was sentenced last week. Upon release, he will be on parole for three years.
Flores has previous felony charges from Dec. 14, 2016 for possession of a firearm or destructive device by a felon, and he was convicted on the charge in Jan. 2018.
On July 5, 2019 Hobbs Police Department officers responded to the 400 block on East Dunnam Street for a shots fired call, and when they arrived began searching for the alleged offender’s vehicle, a Ford F250.
Later on that same day, officers went to the 500 block on West Scharbauer in relation to the same incident, for additional information.
When officers arrived at the Scharbauer location, a witness told officers, “Ruben Flores came to his daughter’s house on Dunnam and shot multiple rounds through the house.”
The witness then told officers he located Flores’ truck at the 1000 block on East Chuska and would “lead officers to the location.”
When HPD officers arrived, they allegedly observed Flores sitting in the driver seat of the F250 and told Flores to exit the truck. Lea County Sheriff’s Office deputies also responded to the area on East Chuska.
Flores failed to comply and officers’ commands to exit the truck with his hands up.
“(Sheriff’s deputies and HPD) approached the vehicle,” the HPD criminal complaint states. “(HPD) opened the driver’s door and observed (the) barrel of a rifle sitting on the lap of the driver. (HPD) advised officers of the firearm. Officers moved back to cover.”
Having moved back to take cover, HPD officers told Flores to place his hands outside of the vehicle. He did. Flores then exited the vehicle and a “black rifle fell to the ground,” the report stated.
“Ruben was commanded to walk backwards with his hands in the air, which he complied. Ruben was placed into handcuffs. A strong odor of alcohol was emitting from Ruben’s person,” the report states.
HPD officers visually inspected the vehicle and found multiple ammunition magazines along with the butt end of a pistol stuck between the seats.
Flores was known to officers from previous encounters, and based on previous convictions they knew him to be a convicted felon, the report states. After finding the ammunition magazines and firearm butt, HPD officers secured a search warrant. Several guns, along with ammunition, were found in the vehicle when officers searched it.
“AR-15 rifle (no serial number); grey Glock 42 (serial number); silver American Classic 1911 (serial number); Raven Arms .22 Cal (serial number); two spent .45 cal casing; two .223 spent casing; one 40 round magazine; 31 live rounds of .556; six live rounds of .25 cal; seven live rounds of .45 cal; 10 live rounds of .40 cal; six live rounds of .380 cal rounds,” the report states.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives also investigated the case, because of firearms missing serial numbers, with assistance from HPD and LCSO. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joni Autrey Stahl and Richard Williams prosecuted the case.
Gabrielle Arsiaga may be reached at .