TORRANCE COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – Deputies have questions for a man they say ran from a scene where another man was found dead but first, they’ll have to find him. Torrance County Deputies spotted the man next to a truck on the side of the road outside of Edgewood but, when they went to talk to him, he ran away. They’re calling the circumstances of the man’s death extremely suspicious but, this isn’t a homicide investigation yet and the man isn’t a suspect yet, but deputies are still eager to track him down.
What started as routine patrol ended in a multi-agency manhunt. A Torrance County deputy was making his rounds Friday night near Ballenger Ranch and Martinez when he stumbled across a man and a truck in the trees.
“They stopped to contact that person to see what’s going on. The male subject took off running into the woods,” recalls Torrance County Sheriff Heath White.
The scene only became more bizarre when deputies took a closer look at and around the truck.
“They discovered a body in that area, so we locked down that scene and actually pursued the male subject that was running,” says White.
The Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, APD and State Police all helped Torrance County in the search to no avail.
White says they know who the man is and they have a few questions for him, but they’ll have to find him first.
“He’s where? You don’t know? I don’t know either, but I don’t like it,” says 20-year Moriarty resident Ruth Roberts.
It makes Roberts uneasy. Though the death has not yet been ruled a homicide and the mystery man is not yet considered a suspect, she wants him found.
“It does concern me a lot. I live in the country by myself with a couple of dogs and a couple of old ladies around me,” explains Roberts.
She’s not the only one. Roberts is just one of many locals eager for answers.
“You don’t hear much of that out here in this small town of Moriarty. It’s pretty quiet out here,” says resident Juan Nieves.
Nieves says he’s not too concerned just yet but he is on alert.
“I am worried that they haven’t caught him but, not enough to be scared,” Nieves says.
Staying alert is something Sheriff White is asking of all residents- if you see anything suspicious, anyone asking for a ride or a hand-out, call deputies.
He says they’re in the early stages of this investigation and are staying tight-lipped until they’re able to interview everyone who might be involved.
White says they have a rush on the autopsy and will know more once it’s done. That could happen as soon as tomorrow.