Sheriff’s Helicopter Locates Burglary Suspects Within Minutes Of Call


Date: 03/01/2011

San Juan County, NM – On February 29, 2012 at approximately 1615 hours, the San Juan County Sheriff’s helicopter was conducting a routine patrol in the Farmington area, onboard were Deputy Gross (Pilot) and Deputy Roberts (Tactical Flight Officer).

While in the air they heard dispatchers call out Farmington Police to a breaking and entering in progress at an apartment building located across the street from Tibbets Middle School in Farmington, NM. The helicopter happened to be flying over that area and began searching the area for the suspects.

Dispatch provided a description of the suspects as being two males, both wearing hoodies and blue jeans, and armed with a six-inch knife. As a precaution, Tibbets Middle School was placed in lockdown while police officers searched for the suspects.

Within approximately two minutes of hearing the description of the suspects the San Juan County Sheriff’s aircrew was able to locate two subjects matching the suspects’ description in an alley near Tibbets Middle School. Roberts directed responding Farmington PD units to the subjects, who were taken into custody without incident.

Both suspects were arrested and booked for aggravated burglary. The arrest was recorded by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office helicopter’s FLIR camera.