Hourslong SWAT standoff at Las Cruces apartment ends in arrest

Ruben Trujillo is charged with one count each of battery upon a peace officer, concealing identity, and resisting, obstructing or evading an officer. (Credit: Las Cruces Police Department)

A man who prompted a SWAT standoff at an apartment complex in Las Cruces on Thursday night has been identified.

The standoff happened around 9 p.m. at an apartment complex at 1900 North Solano Drive.

Police said they responded April 13 to a report of a suspicious vehicle in the area of Neleigh Drive. When officers arrived, they found SUVs in the roadway with 29-year-old Ruben Trujillo standing between the vehicles, said police spokesman.

Police said Trujillo punched a police officer and then ran away, leading officers on a brief foot pursuit. The officers lost sight of Trujillo near Second Street.

A warrant was issued for Trujillo’s arrest. The warrant was being served Thursday at an apartment at 1900 N. Solano Drive. A woman left the apartment and confirmed that Trujillo was inside. Officers tried to make contact with Trujillo but did not receive a response. LCPD’s SWAT and hostage negotiation teams ware called out at about 9 p.m. but Trujillo continued to refuse commands to exit the apartment.

Tear gas was thrown into the apartment by SWAT, said police. It was later learned that Trujillo entered the crawl space in the apartment’s ceiling and moved through several apartments in an attempt to escape.

An LCPD K-9 unit was lifted into the crawl space and caught Trujillo, who tried to fight the dog. Trujillo was eventually taken into custody at about 5 a.m. Friday. He was taken to Memorial Medical Center for injuries he sustained in the fight with the K-9.

Once Trujillo is released from the hospital; he will be booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center.

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