El PASO, Texas (KTSM) — New Mexico State Police are asking for assistance in locating a man who fled from the Las Cruces Police Department on Sept. 11.
Luis Enrique Franco, 28, of Las Cruces, is wanted on the following charges: receiving or transferring stolen motor vehicles and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer.
If you have any information regarding Franco’s whereabouts, contact the New Mexico State Police at (575) 382-2500, option 1.
Franco was arrested on Aug. 28, after leading police on a high-speed pursuit that ended on Doniphan Drive near La Tuna Federal Prison in Anthony.
The chase started in Las Cruces when an LCPD officer attempted to initiate a traffic stop on a black/grayish pickup truck towing a small trailer. The vehicle fled and a pursuit was initiated. The pursuit was discontinued after the vehicle proceeded south out of Las Cruces.
The driver was identified by LCPD as Franco, who was wanted for several thefts in the Las Cruces area.
A short time later, Dona Ana County Sheriff deputies located the vehicle traveling north on New Mexico 28, just south of New Mexico 182. DASO deputies attempted to initiate a traffic stop, but the vehicle fled and a pursuit ensued. During the pursuit, Franco drove in a manner endangering other drivers on the roadway by driving into opposing traffic and running several other motorists off the roadway.
New Mexico State Police assisted with numerous deployments of stop sticks at different locations in an attempt to bring the vehicle to a safe stop.
At around 8:30 a.m., New Mexico State Police Sgt. George Bernal engaged in the vehicle pursuit near Anthony. Bernal attempted several Pursuit Intervention Techniques (PIT), but was unsuccessful in stopping the vehicle. At one point in the pursuit, Franco backed his vehicle into Bernal’s unit, prompting Bernal to fire his service pistol at him. Franco was not struck by gunfire.
The pursuit ended near Doniphan Drive and La Tuna Federal Prison in Anthony, after a final PIT maneuver was utilized to stop the vehicle.
Franco was taken into custody and arrested. He was treated by emergency personnel on scene and transported to a local hospital. He was charged with non-residential burglary, breaking and entering larceny (over $2,500).
He was subsequently charged by NMSP with aggravated fleeing from a law enforcement officer; receiving or transferring a motor vehicle; resisting, evading or obstructing a peace officer 30-22-1B, Misdemeanor and criminal damage to property.
The PIT maneuvers and shots fired occurred in Texas and the investigation was turned over to the Texas Rangers. The New Mexico State Police Crime Scene Unit assisted in the investigation.
This is not the first time Franco has fled from law enforcement. On April 15, 2017, he was involved in a vehicle pursuit with a New Mexico State Police officer on Interstate 25 in Las Cruces. His vehicle struck a telephone pole on Triviz Drive and he fled on foot. He was arrested and subsequently convicted aggravated fleeing a law enforcement officer and embezzlement of a motor vehicle (1st Offense and knowingly leaving the scene of an accident (great bodily harm or death).