Las Cruces man accused of attacking stepfather with hammer now charged with murder

Las Cruces News

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — A Las Cruces man was charged with murder after the victim he is accused of attacking with a hammer on Nov. 20 died from injuries sustained in the attack, according to Las Cruces police.

Alejandro Nevarez, 28, was initially charged with attempted murder. Investigators upgraded the charge to murder after the victim died on Monday. Nevarez also faces one count of tampering with evidence.

About 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 20, Las Cruces police were called to a home on the 1100 block of Lees Drive to a report of a man who was critically injured by his stepson. Officers found 56-year-old John Padilla with severe injuries to his head. Padilla was transported to University Medical Center in El Paso.

According to the Las Cruces Police Department, Nevarez was challenging Padilla, his stepfather, to a fight, as well as threatening to injure him. Investigators believe that sometime prior to 5:30 p.m. the same day, Nevarez followed Padilla outside and hit him on his head multiple times with a hammer. Nevarez’s mother said she went to the backyard and saw her husband injured on the ground with her son standing over him and holding a hammer.

Nevarez fled the home before police arrived, however, he was found at a nearby abandoned residence. He was taken into custody without further incident. Investigators believe Nevarez discarded the hammer when he fled from the home.

Nevarez remains incarcerated at the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he is being held without bond.

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