Taos County Crime Stoppers (TCCS) is a non-profit organization which works in concert with local law enforcement and different media outlets to enhance safety within our community. TCCS post pictures and data on individuals that are wanted for various crimes or failures to comply with Court orders which have resulted in a warrant being issued for their arrest. The program solicits "Tips" from anyone having knowledge of the whereabouts of the fugitive or information that may lead to solving a crime. "Tipsters" are totally anonymous and cannot be traced by any means. In 38 years of operation involving literally thousands of tips, there has never been an instance wherein the Tipster`s identity was revealed. The Tipster calls, e-mails, or texts the tip to an anonymous call center in Canada, (i.e. 758-HALT). If the tip leads to the apprehension of a wanted fugitive or the solving of a crime, the Tipster may be entitled to a reward ranging from $100 to $1000, depending upon the severity of the situation leading to that individual`s alleged crime or the severity and type of crime involved. The reward is not contingent upon the individual being found guilty at trial, but rather upon the successful apprehension of the fugitive.
In the month of August and through September 6, 2016, TCCS received a total of 19 tips, four of which led to the apprehension of fugitives having open warrants issued by local Court officials.
On August 2nd., TCCS received an anonymous Tip regarding the location of fugitive Devin Archuleta in Taos. This information was immediately relayed to Town of Taos Police officers who located Mr. Archuleta at the residence where he was arrested. He was wanted on a District Court Bench Warrant, two Magistrate Court Bench Warrants and a Municipal Court Bench Warrant. His charges included; Battery Upon a Household Member, Driving on a Revoked License (DWI related), Minor in possession or under the influence of liquor and Failure to comply with Drug Court Program Requirements.
On August 10th, while officers of the New Mexico State Police (NMSP) were actively searching for fugitive Mario Z. Rael in the Cabresto area, TCCS received an anonymous Tip describing Mr. Rael`s location. The Tipster`s information was immediately relayed to NMSP and this additional information resulted in him being located and arrested. Mr. Rael was wanted on charges of Trafficking a Controlled Substance (1-2nd Degree felony). possesson of a controlled substance, to wit Methamphetamine (4th Degree felony), Possession of a Controlled substance, to wit; Hydrocodone (4th Degree felony); Possession of Drug Paraphjernalia (2 counts); Possession of a Firearm by a Felon; Harboring a Felon (4th Degree felony); and Aggravated Fleeing from a Law Enforcement Officer.
On August 23rd, TCCS received a Tip giving a specific address for fugitive Joseph Frank Montano in Albuquerque. This anonymous information was passed on to agents of the U.S. Marshalls Service who were actively looking for Me. Montano. He was arrested early the next day at the address provided by the Tipster. Mr. Montano had been wanted for over a year on numerous charges including; Aggravated Fleeing a Law Enforcement Officer, Felony Criminal Damage to Property, Breaking and Entry, Assault, Aggravated Battery of a Household Member, Interference with Communications, and more.
On September 5th, TCCS received an anonymous Tip directing Town of Taos Police Officers to the Pinch Penny Wash-O-Mat in Taos, where they found and were able to arrest Javier C. Romero. Mr. Romero was wanted on a Magistrate Court Bench Warrant for Failure to Appear on a charge of Aggravated Battery (Misdemeanor) with No Bodily Harm.
The instances cited above prove that the Taos County Crime Stoppers program is effective. Citizens are encouraged to visit the TCCS website at taoscountycrimestoppers.org or on Facebook to see the current posting of Most Wanted Fugitives and to learn how to submit a Tip.