Ninth Judicial District Attorney, Brian Scott Stover, announced that on July 20th, Efrain Moreno age 26 of Clovis, was convicted of Aggravated Battery upon a Peace Officer with a Deadly Weapon, Aggravated Fleeing a Law Enforcement Officer, Injury to a Police Dog (Serious Physical Injury or Death), and Criminal Damage to Property over $1,000.00
On December 17th, 2020, at approximately 2 am, Efrain Moreno ran from police officers in a white SUV. Mr. Moreno during the pursuit pointed a laser at officers as well as a black in color pellet gun. During the pursuit, Moreno rammed one Sheriff’s vehicle. At one point Moreno stopped the vehicle and officers approached to apprehend him with the help of Clovis PD’s K9 Caster. Moreno fought with officers as well as K9 Caser who had been deployed and had engaged Moreno. Moreno, still in his vehicle put the SUV in reverse, shoving the officers and then driving away at a high rate of speed, dragging K9 Caster for several hundred yards seriously injuring the police K9. The pursuit traveled into Texas and then back into New Mexico where it was terminated using a PIT maneuver. This pursuit lasted over two hours.
The Honorable Drew Tatum presided over the sentencing hearing and sentenced Moreno to a total of five years in the Department of Corrections followed by two- and one-half years of supervised probation and two years parole. Mr. Moreno is not a U.S. citizen and may face deportation at the completion of his incarceration.
Judge Tatum stated, “It is a wonder officers did not use deadly force in response to Moreno pointing what appeared to be a weapon at them. The officer showed an extreme level of restraint. The Judge also commented on how horrific it was for Moreno to drag the police K9.”
The sentencing hearing was argued by Assistant District Attorney, Jon Harris, and Mr. Moreno was represented by the criminal defense attorney, Blake Dugger, of Lovington New Mexico.