Police arrest eight in San Juan County crime ring

San Juan County Sheriff's Office says 14 suspects stole taxidermy mounts, ATMs and firearms

Joshua Kellogg
  • Police have arrested eight suspects in connection to a possible crime ring. Six people are still wanted.
  • The suspects are accused of stealing from homes, businesses and government agencies over the last few months.
  • The San Juan County Sheriff's Office has not yet determined the total worth of all the stolen property.
The San Juan County Sheriff's Office has released these photos of taxidermy mounts recovered from residence in Albuquerque on Tuesday.

FARMINGTON — A nearly six-month law enforcement investigation into a possible crime ring has led to more than 160 charges against 14 suspects in connection to the thefts of items that include taxidermy mounts, ATMs, firearms and vehicles.

The San Juan County Sheriff's Office and Farmington Police Department served 14 arrest warrants and five search warrants on Tuesday, according to a press release from the Sheriff's Office. The U.S. Marshals Service and FBI helped execute the warrants.

The suspects allegedly committed burglaries and larcenies at homes, businesses and government agencies in and around the county, according to the press release.

Police have arrested eight of the suspects, and six more were still wanted this afternoon.

According to police, the suspects were involved in stealing a wide range of items that included more than $100,000 worth of taxidermy mounts, hundreds of firearms, thousands of dollars in jewelry and a number of vehicles, according to detective Lt. Kyle Lincoln with the Sheriff's Office.

He said police have not yet determined the total worth of all the stolen property.

Lincoln added that the Sheriff's Office was "honored" to put a dent in a criminal organization that targeted San Juan County residents and businesses.

The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office has released this image of suspects who have been arrested and others who are still wanted in connection to a racketeering ring.

Among the suspects who are in custody is Travis "Shine" Brewton. He faces 53 charges, including 44 felonies, according to court records. He is currently being held at the San Juan County Adult Detention Center on a $800,000 cash-only bond.

Two other suspects are facing more than 20 felony charges each in connection to the investigation.

Zachary Goar has been charged with 29 felonies, and Marcos Herrera is facing 24 felony charges, according to court records. Goar is being held on a $150,000 cash-only bond, and Herrera on a $300,000 cash-only bond.

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Also in custody is Daniel Tarango, Estella Maria Tarango, Jeremy Davis, Troy Pope and Aaron Brown, according to the press release.

David Berryhill Jr., Raymond Turnbull, Brandon Yates, Paul White, Joshua Alcon and Jerry Sharski are wanted on outstanding warrants. Anyone with information is asked to call San Juan County Dispatch at 505-334-6622 or San Juan County Crime Stoppers at 505-334-8477.

Police say the burglaries and larcenies took place throughout the county over the last several months.

Several U.S. Post Office locations and county solid waste dump stations were burglarized, according to the press release.

Four ATM thefts were allegedly committed at county businesses between July and November 2016, according to Brewton's arrest warrant affidavit.

Farmington police Detective Sgt. Matthew Vieth said his agency's detectives have worked with the Sheriff's Office on the investigation.

"I felt that the operation went really well," Vieth said.

He said Farmington police plan to use information from this case to conduct follow-up investigations into other possible crimes.

Joshua Kellogg covers crime, courts and social issues for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627.

UPDATE: This story has been updated to correct the spelling of the name of Farmington police Detective Sgt. Matthew Vieth.