Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

Woman jailed on felony counts


August 7, 2019

Police jailed a New York woman on multiple felony counts after she was accused of threatening and holding a Tucumcari hotel employee against his will at knifepoint.

Kelsey J. Killian, 26, of Buffalo, New York, was booked July 28 into the Quay County Detention Center on complaints off second-degree kidnapping, false imprisonment, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and misdemeanor larceny.

Second-degree kidnapping is second-degree felony that can lead up to nine years in prison and a $10,000 fine. The imprisonment and assault counts are fourth-degree felonies that can lead up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine.

According to a complaint filed July 29 in Tucumcari magistrate court by Tucumcari patrolman Max Farren, officers received a report at 3:49 a.m. July 28 of an employee at Holiday Inn Express being held at gunpoint. The employee had locked himself into a restroom.

Officers found Killian in the hotel’s main hallway and ordered her to approach, show her hands and sit down against a wall. Farren said Killian had a larger Gerber knife on her hip. The employee approached and told officers Killian was the suspect. She was handcuffed and escorted into a police vehicle.

The employee said Killian’s parents had called and made a reservation at the hotel. Killian arrived, checked into the room and went to use the lobby restroom.

Upon returning, the employee told police Killian walked behind the counter and began “rummaging around” next to where he stood.

“Ms. Killian then drew her knife and nodded to the rear office area of the hotel,” Farren wrote in his complaint. The employee walked to the rear office, followed by Killian. She began to look through drawers and cabinets as the employee stood against a wall. She asked where the cameras were.

The employee was forced to remain in the back office as Killian tried to open management offices. She took a stack of green plastic cups and a set of master keys.

Killian appeared to be on her cellphone during the incident and said the phone’s charge was about to die. The employee showed Killian where a charger was and grabbed his cellphone at the same time.

The employee asked whether he could use the restroom. Killian followed him there, “covering her face using a boonie cap and pulling her shirt up while doing so.” As the employee pretended to use the restroom, Killian walked out. The employee waited to hear her walk away before he called his fiancé, who in turn called 911.

When officers advised Killian of her right to remain silent, she said she was “scared and believed that there were bombs that (the employee) would set off.” She said that was why she held him at knifepoint.

The case was transferred to Tucumcari District Court last week. Killian remained in the Quay County Detention Center.

Public defender Anna Aragon was appointed as Killian’s attorney. She could not be reached for comment.


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