The Latest: Hitchhiker with fugitives faces drug charges

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on the cross-state motorcade procession for a fallen New Mexico police officer (all times local):

2:40 p.m.

A hitchhiker who authorities say jumped into a car with two Ohio fugitives before one of them fatally shot a New Mexico police officer has been arraigned on drug charges.

Tony Jones made his first appearance Monday in a Las Cruces court, where his bond was set at $75,000. Jones was taken into custody Friday after the shooting death of Officer Jose Chavez in Hatch.

Jones, who is 44, has not been implicated in the shooting.

Authorities say one of the fugitives reached through a window and shot Chavez, who was standing on the passenger’s side of the car.

A Dona Ana County sheriff’s spokeswoman says the drug charges were filed against Jones after officers obtained a search warrant over the weekend and found a large amount of methamphetamine in a suitcase that Jones had with him Friday.


2:05 p.m.

Dozens of people have begun gathering in Albuquerque to pay their respects to a police officer who was shot and killed in a small New Mexico village.

Authorities say the body of 33-year-old Jose Chavez will be transported Monday to his hometown of Las Cruces from Albuquerque, where the fallen officer’s body was taken over the weekend for an autopsy at the state Office of the Medical Examiner.

The procession was set to begin at 2 p.m., with a motorcade traveling along Interstate 25.

Near a stretch of the highway that runs close to the Albuquerque airport, cars pulled over to the shoulder of the road, and people held up American flags. The group also included members of law enforcement agencies and fire crews.

Don Underwood, of Albuquerque, says he teared up when he heard about Chavez’s death on the news.


9 a.m.

Law enforcement agencies from around the state are scheduled Monday to participate in a procession for a Hatch police officer killed Friday during a traffic stop.

Las Cruces police said the body of Jose Chavez was transported to Albuquerque for autopsy and will return to his hometown of Las Cruces on Monday.

Funeral services are scheduled for later this week.

Officials say law enforcement agencies, fire departments and others along Interstate 25, from Albuquerque and Las Cruces, will join in the procession as the motorcade approaches.

Chavez, a New Mexico police officer in a small village famous for its green chile, was gunned down after pulling over two Ohio murder suspects.

Police have arrested 38-year-old Jesse Hanes and 36-year-old James Nelson in connection with the shooting.

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