Two arrested, more sought in recent thefts

Staff Writer

While two arrests have been made in connection with a recent rash of thefts, other theft and burglary incidents within the town and county remain unsolved.

Now, due to the recent influx in thefts from vehicles, as well as other thefts and burglaries, area law enforcement are urging locals and tourists alike to take precautions.

“We are experiencing an increase in thefts from vehicles and ... residents are reminded to not leave valuables in vehicles, and secure their vehicles,” said Pagosa Springs Police Department Detective Scott Maxwell, who also urged that people report any suspicious behavior they witness.

“I think a lot of people are forgetting to lock their doors,” Archuleta County Sheriff’s Office Detective Jake Beach added, noting that law enforcement personnel are not seeing damage to vehicles involved with thefts, and further cautioning, “It is summertime; people are out walking around at all hours of the night.”

Two area men were recently arrested in connection with thefts reported involving vehicles.

According to Maxwell, at about 12:30 a.m. on May 13, an individual reportedly witnessed a man getting into two vehicles on the 100 block of Pagosa Street. The witness reported that the man was crouched by an open door of one of the vehicles, then watched the man go to a second vehicle.

Two of the thefts were believed to have occurred the night of May 15 or early May 16, Maxwell reported.

In the first incident, Maxwell said a purse (with contents including a passport, iPod and other items) was taken from a vehicle on the 200 block of Lewis Street.

In the second incident, Maxwell said a backpack and its contents were reported missing from a vehicle on the 600 block of Florida Street.

Following those three incidents, PSPD personnel arrested two men separately, with Maxwell noting the PSPD is unsure if the events are connected or not.

The first man was arrested on May 22, when officer Floyd Capistrant observed a male subject he knew to have a warrant, Maxwell explained. Capistrant then contacted that subject on 8th Street and reportedly found him to be in possession of the passport stolen from the vehicle on Lewis Street.

That subject, Dusten Johnson, 20, was taken into custody for failure to appear (for which the warrant was issued), possession of drug paraphernalia, theft-possession of stolen property and criminal possession of an identification document, Maxwell reported.

Maxwell added that a subsequent investigation by the PSPD led to the recovery of the backpack and some of the property that had been in it.

A second arrest relating to the thefts occurred on June 3, after the witness from the May 13 thefts was able to identify the alleged perpetrator, Maxwell said.

That man, Justin Apodaca, 20, was arrested on a warrant for first-degree criminal trespass, according to Maxwell.

Three other incidents, however, remain unsolved.

On May 30, ACSO deputies responded to a report of a theft from a motor vehicle in the Hatcher Lake area, with that theft believed to have taken place between 9 p.m. on May 29 and 8:30 a.m. on May 30, Beach said.

In that incident, Beach said items reported as stolen include a camera and lenses, a laptop, a backpack with firefighting equipment and other personal items.

On Tuesday, June 3, a green Honda four-wheeler was reported stolen from the grounds of Keyah Grande, Beach said, though the theft was believed to have taken place in March.

Also on Tuesday, a burglary was reported at a residential construction site on Cemetery Road, Maxwell explained. That incident is believed to have occurred sometime between 7 p.m. on June 2 and the morning of June 3.

Items reported as stolen from that site, Maxwell said, include a generator, power tools and other miscellaneous items such as work lights and extension cords.

Anyone with information on these or any other crimes is asked to call either Maxwell at 264-4151, ext. 241 or contact Archuleta County CrimeStoppers by calling 264-2133, visiting, or by texting “ACCST” plus your message to 274637 (CRIMES).