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Arizona man gets three years in prison for stabbing man in throat in Shiprock

The felon will also have three years of supervised release

Joshua Kellogg
Farmington Daily Times
  • Travis Clitso, 25, Pinon, Arizona, was sentenced to a three year and one-month prison sentence during a Jan. 22 hearing in Albuquerque federal court.
  • Clitso pleaded guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon in Indian Country in a plea agreement filed on Oct. 8.
  • The victim was initially transported to Northern Navajo Medical Center in Shiprock then to University of New Mexico hospital in Albuquerque for treatment.

FARMINGTON — An Arizona man has been sentenced to more than three years in federal prison for stabbing another man in the throat at a Shiprock gas station in 2019 while hitchhiking from Colorado.

Travis Clitso, 25, of Pinon, Arizona, was sentenced to a three year and one-month prison sentence during a Jan. 22 hearing in Albuquerque federal court, according to a U.S. Department of Justice press release.

Clitso pleaded guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon in Indian Country, a felony, in a plea agreement filed on Oct. 8.

Crime: Man admits to embezzling $59,000 while working at Smith's gas station

The investigation was launched on Feb. 6, 2019, when the FBI Farmington office was notified of a stabbing earlier that day, according to court documents.

Interviews with Clisto and the victim described a violent crime stemming from the male driver picking up Clitso while he was hitchhiking.

The victim was not identified in court documents but his year of birth was listed as 1949.

Clitso was hitchhiking south of Cortez, Colorado, in an attempt to get home to Arizona.

The victim saw him on the side of the road and decided to pick him up, as it was getting dark outside and the weather got colder.

The victim drove Clitso to Shiprock and stopped at a Giant gas station as he realized his route of travel would not take Clitso toward his destination.

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Clitso said he was extremely tired from walking and did not want to get out of the victim’s vehicle. While parked, Clitso said he stabbed the driver in the throat out of frustration.

The driver was able to exit the vehicle while applying pressure to the wound and sought help from a gas station employee as Clitso fled the scene.

The defendant was arrested later that night and said he regretted the incident during an interview with investigators.

The victim was initially transported to Northern Navajo Medical Center in Shiprock then to University of New Mexico hospital in Albuquerque for treatment.

Law enforcement found the knife and a red substance consistent with blood in the vehicle.

The plea agreement also included three years of supervised released after Clitso completes his prison sentence.

Crime: Farmington Police Department blotter for Jan. 22, 2021

Joshua Kellogg covers breaking news for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627 or via email at jkellogg@daily-times.com.

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