Alamogordo, N.M. – The New Mexico State Police rescued 14 hostages, including a three year old, from a pistachio farm in the southern part of the state Sunday afternoon.
The State Police identified the suspect as Caleb Scroggins, 21, from Alamogordo, N.M.
Law enforcement authorities said they were looking for Scroggins because he was a suspect in a shooting earlier in the day, reported Fox News. While police canvassed the area, they found Scroggin’s vehicle and a chase began.
Scroggins traveled west on Dog Ranch. He failed to yield to northbound traffic on a Highway 70/54. Consequently, he was hit broadside by another vehicle.
Following the collision, Scroggins got out of the car, exchanged gunfire with police, and ran into McGinn’s Pistachio Farm store. Once inside the business he held 14 hostages.
Shortly thereafter, law enforcement from multiple New Mexico agencies arrived. During negotiations, the State Police Tactical Response Team secured the perimeter. Eventually, the tactical team rescued all the hostages and Scroggins surrendered peacefully not long after.
The Alamogordo DailyNews reported the standoff last four hours.
Police believe Scroggins may have been armed when he took the hostages, but he was not armed when he surrendered.
“The Sheriff’s office worked very swiftly to talk the suspect out. He gave himself up. Didn’t have a weapon on him at the time but we’re going to go through the scene and see what’s in there,” said New Mexico State Police Chief Pete Kassetas.
— Alamogordo DailyNews (@alamogordonews) June 18, 2017
None of the hostages were injured, but they were evaluated at the hospital. Scroggins was treated for injuries from the car crash during the police pursuit.
The man has a long criminal history, according to Fox. Prior charges include battery of a household member, concealing identity, burglary, possession of a controlled substance, and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer.
Charges against Scroggins for Sunday’s crimes are pending.
(Photo: Alamogordo DailyNews Twitter)
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