Home Local News Texan attacks limo driver in Hobbs

Texan attacks limo driver in Hobbs

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Texan attacks limo driver in Hobbs

Andy Brosig/News-Sun

A Texas man was arrested late Tuesday amid allegations he attacked a limousine driver who’d been hired to bring him to Hobbs to gamble and stole his vehicle.

Rosario Portillo, 49, of Midland, Texas, was arrested and charged with unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony, and battery, a petty misdemeanor.

According to a Hobbs Police Department report, Portillo was a passenger in the limo and became angered when the driver would not stop to allow him to relieve himself.

The initial report indicated witnesses saw a man “acting crazy,” breaking windows on the limo in a parking lot in the 2800 block of N. Dal Paso St. in Hobbs. The caller then reported they saw the limo leaving the parking lot, headed north on N. Dal Paso.

The city’s video observation system, Eagle IC, reportedly tracked the car to the intersection of N. Dal Paso and Navajo Drive, where it pulled into a convenience store. Eagle IC operators informed responding officers the man, later identified as Portillo, entered the convenience store wearing a dark gray shirt.

Officers made contact with Portillo and noticed his face was swollen, and had fresh blood on his face and nose, consistent with being in a fight, the report stated.

Portillo told officers he was from Texas and had planned to go to the casino when the limo driver pulled into the N. Dal Paso parking lot and attacked him “for no known reasons.”

Portillo said the driver reportedly ran into a business at the location after the fight, according to the report. Portillo attempted to follow him but was forced to leave by employees of the business.

When contacted, the driver told police he’d been driving Portillo, who demanded the driver pull over so Portillo could relieve himself. When the driver refused, Portillo allegedly became irate, jumping into the front seat and attacked him.

The driver pulled into the parking lot and fought back, the report stated.
Portillo allegedly grabbed the keys from the ignition. The driver also told police Portillo repeatedly said, “I’m going to kill you,” according to the report.

The driver told police, once the fight was over, he ran into the nearby business and asked employees to call 9-1-1. The driver said he watched as Portillo got into the limo and drove away, according to the report.

Portillo made his first appearance in Lea County Municipal Court on Wednesday before Judge Clipper Miller. According to court records at the New Mexico Courts Secure Courts Access website, Portillo was released on $5,000 bond.

No further hearings were scheduled as of press time Wednesday.

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