Man accused in 2013 Farmington home burglary

Steve Garrison
Zackary D. Rodriguez

FARMINGTON — A 27-year-old man has been accused of stealing almost a dozen firearms from a Farmington residence in 2013.

Zackary D. Rodriguez was charged Jan. 4 in Farmington Magistrate Court with two counts of aggravated burglary, 11 counts of firearm theft and one count of felony larceny.

Rodriguez was being held at the San Juan County Adult Detention Center on a $80,000 bond, according to court records.

His attorney, Steve Murphy, said Rodriguez was previously charged in 2014 with breaking and entering and petty misdemeanor vandalism on similar allegations and successfully completed the pre-prosecution diversion program to have those charges dismissed.

He said he was not certain why Rodriguez was being charged again in connection to the same burglary.

"We thought all these charges were resolved," Murphy said.

Farmington police officers were dispatched Aug. 17, 2013, to a home in the 2300 block of East 17th Street in Farmington after receiving reports of a burglary, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

The homeowner's mother told detectives she was watering the lawn for her son, who was out of town on business, when she noticed a living room door was open, the affidavit states. She told detectives she remembered shutting it the day prior and suspected a break-in.

Detectives entered the residence and discovered clothing thrown on the floor, drawers pulled out of dressers and an empty gun safe lying on the bed, according to the affidavit.

The homeowner later told detectives 10 firearms were stolen, along with tools, jewelry, clothing and $500 in cash, the affidavit states.

A neighbor told police he saw Rodriguez outside the residence the night prior and asked him what he was doing there. Rodriguez allegedly told the neighbor he was getting ready to leave for Albuquerque, according to the affidavit.

The neighbor said Rodriguez called him later and offered to sell him guns, which were "very hot," the affidavit states.

The homeowner told detectives he suspected Rodriguez committed the robbery, according to the affidavit. The home's owner said Rodriguez had asked him if he could rent a room at the home several times, but Rodriguez was abusing narcotics and the owner did not trust him, the affidavit states.

The homeowner called detectives the day after the robbery was reported and provided them several items he found at his residence, including a bandanna and a screwdriver. The homeowner said he also found one of the missing shotguns in the bed of his truck, the affidavit states.

The case went cold until July, when the New Mexico Department of Public Safety contacted the Farmington Police Department regarding DNA evidence found on the screwdriver, according to the affidavit.

The state agency told police that the DNA on the screwdriver matched a DNA profile in their database for Rodriguez, the affidavit states.

Rodriguez is set to appear at a preliminary examination hearing on Wednesday.

Steve Garrison covers crime and courts for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4644.