No iPad, but plenty of pot

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Burglary investigation leads to four arrests

By Martin Salazar

City police officers investigating a burglary last week stumbled upon a large amount of marijuana and ended up arresting two men on felony drug charges.

The next day, according to police, friends of the men arrested confronted the people who reported the burglary to authorities, calling one of them a rat and assaulting him. Those men are now in hot water themselves, facing felony charges.

It all started with the burglary of a residence on the 400 block of 11th Street, according to probable cause statements filed Tuesday in San Miguel County Magistrate Court. Various electronic devices where taken during the burglary, including an iPad with a GPS tracking mechanism.

The tracking device led police to a residence on the 1000 block of South Pacific. The four men in the home told police that they had heard about a burglary but they didn’t have any information about it.

Police asked Dante Terrell, 22, and Joshua Green, 23, for permission to search the home that they were renting for the stolen items, and they agreed.

“During the search of the residence for stolen property, suspected narcotics were located in the north bedroom in a plastic container, containing a large quantity of green leafy substance of suspected marijuana,” the court documents state. “Also located nearby in plain view were several packaging material and a scale.”

Police halted their search, secured the residence and obtained a warrant.

Terrell and Green were arrested, and each has been charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and conspiracy, both fourth-degree felonies, and with a misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

The two men with Terrell and Green when police first showed up at their residence were Molea Chris Patu, 23, who lives in East Kennedy on the New Mexico Highlands University campus, and Rudolph Suhren, 23, of the 2500 block of Collins Drive.

Arrest warrant affidavits filed in their cases state that the three burglary victims had just finished eating lunch last Monday at the Highlands cafeteria in Archuleta Hall when they were confronted by Patu and Suhren.

Police say Patu and Suhren surrounded the burglary victims. The male burglary victim told police that Patu lunged at him and called him a rat continuously. Police say Patu pushed the male burglary victim and told him he would kill him.

Suhren then swung at the male burglary victim, and the two began to fight, the affidavit states. It also alleges that Suhren repeatedly yelled “PIRU PIRU,” which police say is a gang affiliation, and that he told the burglary victim he would kill him.

Campus police intervened.

The male burglary victim told authorities he fears what Suhren and Patu are capable of doing.

Suhren and Patu have each been charged with retaliation against a witness, a second-degree felony, conspiracy a fourth-degree felony and assault with the intent to commit a violent felony, a third-degree felony.

All four men were booked into the San Miguel County Detention Center.

Terrell and Green were being held on $15,000 cash-only bonds, according to online court records. Suhren and Patu were being held on $25,000 cash-only bonds.