Video shows traffic stop that lead to New Mexico police chief being charged


CARLSBAD, N.M. (KRQE) – We’re now getting a look at what led up to a New Mexico police chief using a taser on a driver during a traffic stop in another city. The video shows the tense back and forth, and the driver calling the chief out for overstepping his bounds. The District Attorney’s Office ended up agreeing with the driver and charged the police chief with impersonating a peace officer and battery.

Loving Police Chief Frank Methola’s dash camera started rolling as he tried to pull over Cody Hill in his Ford in August, as the driver entered Carlsbad. Video shows him calling for Carlsbad Police as he followed Hill.

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“It almost hit me and then almost hit another vehicle at a high rate of speed. It’s got two inside. If you could send CPD over here that would be great,” said Methola in lapel video.

After a short chase, Hill finally pulled over. “You need to step out of the vehicle now,” said Methola. Hill stepped out, flipping off Methola and walking toward him yelling.

“Doesn’t f***ing matter. I’m licensed in the State of New Mexico. You almost hit me and another person,” yelled Methola. They go back and forth until Methola has enough.

“Get back right now. Get f**king back now…you almost hit me and someone else. Get on your knees now,” said Methola. Then he tases Hill. Soon after, Eddy County Sheriff’s deputies arrive on the scene.

Deputy: “Hey, hey, hey, hey, relax dude. I’ll, I’ll hear you out. I’ll hear you out.” 
Hill: “When I got to his car, he dropped the taser for no reason.”
Methola: “I told him to get back and he wouldn’t get back.”

Hill was detained as deputies talked to him, his brother who was in the passenger seat, and Methola.

“I passed him, which is not illegal. But he’s a Village of Loving. He should not be able to do this bulls***,” said Hill as he was getting detained.

Deputies watched Methola’s police video and said he was driving 47 mph in a 45 mph zone. Hill said he was going about 57 mph. Hill’s brother told deputies they had about six beers each before hitting the road.

“I’m going to tell you right now, you cannot drive. At all. Ok? If it had been me pulling you over, you’d be going to jail for DUI,” said one deputy who gave Hill a field sobriety test. He and his brother called a ride to pick them up.

As for Methola pulling him over in Carlsbad, deputies told Hill he’d have to take that issue up with the Village of Loving. KRQE News 13 reached out to the mayor’s office on Methola’s job status but did not hear back.

Hill is not facing any charges. Methola is being charged with impersonating a peace officer and battery. His trial is set for September.

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