DA: Federal drug charges complicate murder case
FARMINGTON —The case against a New Mexico couple accused of murdering Daniel Boone nearly two years ago will face delays due to unresolved federal charges, a San Juan County District Attorney's Office official said Wednesday.
Tiki Marez and Kenneth Burrows were charged on Oct. 27 in Aztec Magistrate Court with murder in the slaying of Boone on Jan. 18, 2014.
Boone, 28, was lured out of his home at No. 5 County Road 3235 to help a woman jump start her vehicle, according to an arrest warrant affidavit. While assisting the woman, a man stepped out of the disabled vehicle and shot Boone to death, the affidavit states.
Sheriff's detectives say, after a year-and-a-half investigation, that they determined Marez, 32, of Albuquerque, and Burrows, 45, of Rio Rancho, were the couple involved in the slaying.
Typically, a preliminary examination hearing is scheduled within two weeks of charges being filed.
However, Chief Deputy District Attorney Brent Capshaw said Wednesday he did not expect the preliminary examination hearing for either Marez or Burrows to be held for at least another month due to the federal charges.
Marez and Burrows are currently in federal custody in New Mexico on methamphetamine trafficking charges stemming from a drug bust conducted by the Region II Narcotics Taskforce on May 16, 2014, in Farmington, according to court records. In March 2014, the couple also was charged in the U.S. District Court of Southern Florida with trafficking methamphetamine in Broward County, Fla., records state.
"I have to talk with the federal prosecutor to see when I can get them down here," Capshaw said, adding later, "Sometimes the feds are really helpful. Other times, not so much."
U.S. Department of Justice spokeswoman Elizabeth Martinez said in an email that Marez and Burrows are set to appear at a jury trial in the New Mexico trafficking case on Jan. 25.
She said she had no information on the Florida trafficking case and the federal prosecutor handling that case did not respond to a request for comment.
Burrows' attorney, Kari Converse, filed a motion on Aug. 11 asking that a September trial date in the New Mexico trafficking case be delayed because Marez and Burrow were negotiating a plea bargain that would resolve both the New Mexico and Florida federal cases.
Converse said in the motion that due to the multi-jurisdictional nature of the case, negotiations were proceeding slower than usual.
Converse said in an interview Wednesday that Capshaw could file a writ requesting that both defendants be made available for prosecution in the murder case.
"The writ system would be available to the prosecutor if they chose to use it," Converse said.
She declined to comment on the plea negotiations.
Marez's attorney, Martin Lopez III, did not respond to a request for comment.
Steve Garrison covers crime and courts for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4644.