Police search for suspect who fled into river

The Daily Times staff
Ron Paquin, a school resource officer with the Farmington Police Department, searches on Friday along the Animas River near the Farmington Museum at Gateway Park for a man suspected of trying to run over an officer with a vehicle.

FARMINGTON — Police are seeking information about a suspect who led officers on a chase for several hours this afternoon in and around the Animas River.

As of 5 p.m., officers had called off the search for the man because of safety factors, said Farmington police spokeswoman Georgette Allen.

According to police dispatchers, officers arrived at the Safeway on East Main Street in Farmington at 1:45 p.m. today after reports of a shoplifter.

When police arrived, a man driving a red Ford Fusion allegedly fled the scene in the vehicle, nearly striking an officer, according to police dispatchers.

Law enforcement officers search along the Animas River in Farmington on Friday for a man suspected of trying to run over a police officer with his car.

The suspect abandoned the vehicle near the Panda Express parking lot and then fled on foot south toward to the Animas River with a shiny object in his hands, according to police dispatchers.

At one point, the suspect attempted to escape to an island in the middle of the river.

According to police dispatchers, the suspect eventually traveled back to the river bank and continued to flee.

Allen described the suspect as a white man who was 5 feet, 8 inches tall and was wearing a white tank top and black shorts. Allen said he is heavy-built and bald.

Allen said people with information should call the detectives tip hotline at 505-599-1068.

San Juan County Sheriff's Office Deputy Russ Bradford talks with fellow officers on Friday during a manhunt along the Animas River in Farmington for a suspect accused of trying to run over a police officer with a car.