DOJ New Mexico Roundup Weekly Arrest and Conviction Report


A Zuni man pleaded guilty in federal court to assault with a dangerous weapon.

In his plea agreement, Brian Aragon, 35, an enrolled member of the Zuni Pueblo, admitted that on June 19, 2019, he beat Jane Doe with a candelabra. As a result of the assault, Jane Doe suffered bodily injury.

The Court ordered that Aragon remain in custody pending sentencing, which has not been scheduled. At sentencing, Aragon faces up to 10 years in prison. Upon his release from prison, Aragon will be subject to three years of supervised release.

U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez made the announcement today.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs investigated the case with the assistance of the Acoma Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brittany DuChaussee and Alexander F. Flores are prosecuting the case.

View the Plea Agreement

A federal judge handed down a 48-month prison sentence to a San Felipe man who was convicted by a federal jury of abusive sexual contact.

There is no parole in the federal system.

According to evidence presented at trial and other publicly available court records, between August 13, 2016, and February 13, 2017, Kyle Aguilar, while intoxicated, touched the victim's genitalia and breasts over her clothing. On one occasion, Aguilar unlocked the door to the room where the victim was watching a movie, came into the room, and began massaging the victim's back before touching her breasts and genitals over her clothes.

Upon his release from prison, Aguilar will be subject to 5 years of supervised release and must register as a sex offender.

U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez made the announcement.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorneys Nicholas J. Marshall and Mia Ulibarri-Rubin are prosecuting the case.

A Rio Rancho man was sentenced to 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to carjacking and using, carrying and brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence. This case was adopted from state prosecution in cooperation with the Second Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

According to court documents, in the early morning hours of January 6, 2021, Daniel Pacheco, 31,approached the victim, brandished a firearm, and struck her repeatedly. Pacheco stole the victim's purse and car keys before fleeing in her vehicle.

The victim’s car was equipped with a LoJack anti-theft GPS tracking device, allowing police to locate the vehicle at an apartment complex north of Old Town Albuquerque. When officers attempted to arrest Pacheco, he rammed police vehicles and fled on foot before being apprehended.

During the arrest, officers seized two loaded firearms, extra magazines, and various illegal drugs from Pacheco’s person. The victim positively identified Pacheco and the firearm used in the carjacking. Pacheco admitted to being present during the incident but denied brandishing a firearm.

After completing his term of imprisonment, Pachecowill be required to serve five years of supervised release.

There is no parole in the federal system.

U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez and Bernalillo County District Attorney Sam Bregman made the announcement.

The New Mexico State Police investigated this case with assistance from the FBI Albuquerque Field Office and Albuquerque Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Burkhead and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Haynes prosecuted the case as part of an agreement with the Second Judicial District Attorney’s Office.

Through the agreement, Assistant District Attorneys are designated Special Assistant United States Attorneys (SAUSAs) in the United States Attorney’s Office. The SAUSA from the Second Judicial District Attorney’s Office screens felony criminal complaints filed in Bernalillo County for federal criminal offenses, prioritizing federal charges against those who drive violence in the Albuquerque metropolitan area. Since 2020, the United States Attorney’s Office has reviewed almost 3,000 cases and has charged more than 300 criminal cases pursuant to this program.

The United States Attorney’s Office has similar agreements with the New Mexico Department of Justice and the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office and plans to expand the program throughout the state.

A man is facing federal charges for murder following a violent day-long crime spree in Gallup, New Mexico.

The criminal complaint alleges that on April 24, 2024, a family traveling south on U.S. Highway 491 reported to law enforcement that they had been followed, rear-ended, and shot at by someone sitting in the front passenger seat of a white SUV.

Further investigation revealed that earlier that day, Rydell Happyt, 30, and two others had been involved in a separate shooting incident in Gallup, New Mexico, where a third individual was shot at Happy'sdirection.

After the shooting on the highway, the group continued driving south, and one of the vehicle's occupants, John Doe, began to argue with Happy. Happy then ordered the group to get out of the car, and once they had done so, he shot John Doe. Happy then grabbed a baseball bat and began hitting John Doe in the head. Happy and one of the others then dragged John Doe's body over the edge of a nearby cliff.

Following reports of the earlier shooting on Highway 491, officers from the Navajo Nation Police Department were on the lookout for a white SUV. Officers later observed a vehicle matching the description and pursued. The driver fled, but eventually crashed the SUV, and three individuals, including Happy, were apprehended.

Through follow-up investigation, investigators were able to find John Doe's body, which showed signs of severe head trauma.

If convicted of the current charges, Happy faces up to life in prison.

U.S. Attorney Alexander M.M. Uballez, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Albuquerque Field Office, made the announcement.

The Farmington Resident Agency of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Albuquerque Field Office investigated this case with assistance from the Navajo Police Department and Navajo Department of Criminal Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Eliot Neal is prosecuting the case.

This case is being prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons (MMIP) Regional Outreach Program, which aims to aid in the prevention and response to missing or murdered Indigenous people through the resolution of MMIP cases and communication, coordination, and collaboration with federal, Tribal, state, and local partners. The Department views this work as a priority for its law enforcement components. Through the MMIP Regional Outreach Program, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify MMIP cases and issues in Tribal communities and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. This prosecution upholds the Department’s mission to the unwavering pursuit of justice on behalf of Indigenous victims and their families.

View the Criminal Complaint

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