Tucumcari man pleads to felony counts


December 18, 2019

A Tucumcari man will spend less than two years behind bars if he meets court-imposed conditions after being convicted of shooting at another man in a vehicle in April. The bullet hit a parked pickup truck down the street that was unoccupied.

Jacob Ramirez, 29, pleaded guilty in a Tucumcari district courtroom Dec. 10 to fourth-degree felony counts of shooting at a motor vehicle and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Other felony counts of assault with intent to commit a violent felony, shooting at or from a motor vehicle and possession of a firearm by a felon were dropped in a plea deal with prosecutors.

Ramirez remained at large for about a month after being charged until he was taken into custody without incident by a Tucumcari police officer as he walked down a city street. Quay County Crime Stoppers had offered a $1,000 reward for his arrest.

District Judge Albert Mitchell Jr. sentenced Ramirez to two 18-month prison terms that would run consecutively. Mitchell added a year in prison because of Ramirez’s history as a habitual offender from a conviction in 2009 for false imprisonment, but that term was concurrent and suspended a year.

A request for a furlough from his defense attorney was denied, according to online court documents.

Mitchell said in court Ramirez can be released in less than two years if he completes in-patient treatment program in prison and other conditions. Ramirez said he wanted treatment for methamphetamine use.

His attorney, Anna Aragon, said her client also had mental-health issues. Ramirez said he was on disability because of mental-health problems and hadn’t been taking medication.

Ramirez also must serve one year of parole and pay $5 to the domestic violence treatment fee, $75 to the crime victims reparation fee and $100 to the New Mexico Department of Corrections for submitting a DNA sample. He must also pay $215 in restitution.

According to the original complaint filed by Tucumcari patrolman Herman Martinez, officers the evening of April 28 were called to Jackson and Main streets on a shots-fired call.

After talking with Ramirez, who acknowledged having an argument with a man but denied hearing shots nor having a gun, officers found a bullet hole in the passenger-side window of a parked pickup truck in the 400 block of Aber Street. They later found the bullet in the truck’s driver’s seat and a spent brass casing from a .380-caliber pistol near the street.

The victim told police he and Ramirez had argued. Ramirez pulled out a handgun, pulled back the slide to place a round in the chamber and pointed it at him. Ramirez did not pull the trigger.

When the victim drove off towards his house, he said Ramirez shot at him. The bullet missed and hit the parked pickup truck.

A woman who knew Ramirez said he had a .380-caliber handgun. She said Ramirez contacted her by phone, and “he said he just shot at (the victim) and he needed her to come for him.” She said she also had text messages that referred to the shooting.


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