ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - State Probation and Parole Division officers fanned out at the New Mexico State Fair Friday night in search of sex offenders, absconders and offenders who are on probation but behaving badly.
"I'm from the Sex Offender Unit; I have two recent absconders who are out who are missing," Officer Haven Scogin said. "Both of them I'll be checking for tonight."
Scogin is one of about eight or so PPD officers walking the fairgrounds scanning the crowds for familiar faces, but she said it's not just sex offenders they are looking for.
The officers have a list of most-wanted absconders, which includes 60 offenders who've skipped out on their reporting requirements. Most of them are not sex offenders.
"They're violent offenders, they are gang offenders, lots of drug charges," said Scogin.
These are offenders that might just turn up at the fair because they do not expect anyone to be looking for them there.
"It's a good place to catch them that's not at their residence where they already know we'll be looking," Scogin said.
In years past it's proven successful. Scogin said last year they caught two absconders in just one night.
Another perk of having probation and parole officers actually at the fair is that they are very familiar with their clients, so they can spot them easily in a sea of people.
"We have people from Intensive Supervision, we have people from Sex Offender Unit, Standard Supervision, so we all know a different set of faces, which makes it a good team because then we can see offenders from all genres that are missing," she said.
There are offenders who are allowed to come to the fair with their families and in fact Scogin said the department encourages them to do so as long as that is why they are actually there.
"We're wanting to make sure that the ones who don't always behave properly and have gang ties, gang associations, are not coming here with their friends and causing trouble," said Scogin.
As 10 p.m. Friday the officers had not arrested anyone.
Three Albuquerque veterans remember vividly the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the U.S. into World War II 72 years ago Saturday.
A high school football player caught on camera punching an opponent and giving him a concussion during the state semifinals will not be suspended from the championship game by the New Mexico Activities Association.
The Sandoval County sheriff's sergeant struck by a car during a crash investigation on snow-slickened Interstate 25 Thursday has died.
After getting out of federal prison early this week it looks like former state Sen. Manny Aragón isn't at a halfway house after all. He's back at his own house in the South Valley.
The owner and an employee of a local smoke shop are in federal custody accused of selling spice at the Rio Rancho store.
The New Mexico State Police officer who fired his weapon at van filled with kids during a traffic stop gone bad has been fired.