ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Two men thought they would cap off the holiday weekend with a barbecue. The only problem is they decided to grill out in the Bosque.
It is a move that landed them in jail.
New Mexico has heard it for weeks now. The Bosque is closed due to extreme fire danger, but police say two guys chose to ignore the warning signs.
"We get calls all day long about people that are in here," Anthony Martinez, an officer with Albuquerque Police Department's Open Space Unit said.
Just before 8 p.m. Sunday, 45-year-old Curtis Endischee and 46-year-old Manuel Chavez allegedly decided to have a campfire.
Martinez says they were called to an area about 100 yards south of Central on the west side of the Rio Grande.
Officers could see smoke when they got there. As they approached the two men, they quickly tried to extinguish the campfire and then they ran off. Their getaway didn't last very long.
A trail of trash and a line of footprints led right to them.
"They were located hiding, laying down in this thick Salt Cedar trying to avoid us," Martinez said.
Endischee told officers he and Chavez started the fire to cook steaks.
Martinez was one of the officers that responded to the call. He says this is a problem that happens far too often.
In the few minutes KRQE News 13 followed him, we came across yet another campsite.
He says Sunday night's Bosque barbecue could have ended much worse.
"It just takes one little piece of cotton to catch on fire, float up in the air and land on a dry spot and ignite the whole thing," Martinez said.
One of the officers with Martinez said Monday he saw a man that looked just like Manuel Chavez back in the Bosque. He was released Sunday night.
Both of these men are facing multiple counts. They've been hit with charges of criminal trespassing, starting a fire in an open space area and littering
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