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Man accused of murder faces new charge for allegedly stealing gun used in shooting

The firearm used in the murder case has not been located

Joshua Kellogg
Farmington Daily Times
  • Ronald Long, 40, is accused of stealing a .22 caliber revolver from a woman between Feb. 13, 2020 and March 11, 2020, at a residence west of Bloomfield.
  • The defendant has been charged with a fourth-degree felony count of larceny of a firearm, according to the criminal complaint.
  • The next court hearing for Long in the murder case is set for March 15 in Aztec District Court. A four-day jury trial is set to start on April 19.

FARMINGTON — A Farmington man accused of murder is facing a new criminal case for allegedly stealing the handgun investigators believe was used in the fatal shooting.

Ronald Long, 40, is accused of stealing a .22 caliber revolver from a woman between Feb. 13, 2020 and March 11, 2020, at a residence west of Bloomfield, according to court documents.

The defendant has been charged with a fourth-degree felony count of larceny of a firearm, according to the criminal complaint.

The arrest warrant did not appear to have been served to Long as it was still active on the morning of Feb. 6, according to online court records.

Long is being held without bond at the San Juan County Adult Detention Center.

Ronald Long

The defendant is accused of killing 56-year-old Michael Gagnebin, of Farmington, on March 29, at a residence on County Road 1639 in the area of La Plata, according to The Daily Times archives.

Long allegedly showed up to the residence and shot Gagnebin once in the back of the head.

The arrest warrant affidavit for the murder case does not state what kind of weapon was used or what happened to the firearm.

The court documents for the larceny of the firearm case were filed on Jan. 29 in Aztec Magistrate Court.

A San Juan County Sheriff’s Office detective spoke to the woman in March and April at a residence along U.S. Highway 64 west of Bloomfield.

The woman told the detective her .22 caliber revolver had gone missing in the days prior to the death of Gagnebin after Long had visited her residence asking for money.

More:ATF joins Farmington police shooting investigation after explosives found

She told Long and a man not charged in the case to do chores to earn some money.

Long allegedly saw the firearm on the woman’s bed while doing chores. The woman believes Long faked a seizure in an attempt to lay on the bed with the firearm.

She said multiple days had gone by before she realized the gun was missing.

The detective spoke to an employee of the New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator regarding Gagnebin’s autopsy.

It was determined the weight of the projectile found in Gagnebin weighted 33.4 grams. The OMI employee not explicitly state the projectile came from a .22 caliber round.

The detective determined .22 caliber rounds can weigh from 29 to about 36 grams, according to court documents.

More:Farmington murder suspect agrees to stay in the county jail without bond

He wrote in the affidavit that the weight of the projectile found in Gagnebin shows it was from a .22 caliber round.

During an April 27 interview, the woman told the detective two people who visited her residence “eluded” to the fact the firearm used in Gagnebin’s death was in fact her stolen firearm, according to the affidavit.

The detective wrote the information in the larceny case may lead to the location of the handgun used in the murder case.

The next court hearing for Long in the murder case is set for March 15 in Aztec District Court. A four-day jury trial is set to start on April 19.

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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