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For Immediate Release

July 22, 2011 DUSM James Badway, District of New Mexico (505) 462-2344
U.S. Marshals Arrest the “Demon”

Roswell, NM – On July 21, 2011, United States Marshals and police officers from Odessa, Texas, arrested Christopher Nathan Martinez in a motel in Odessa, Texas. Martinez was on parole for Shooting at or From a Motor Vehicle and Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon. Martinez has a history that includes: Shooting at or From a Motor Vehicle, Battery on a Police Officer, Armed Robbery, Attempted Robbery, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Unlawful Carrying of a Deadly Weapon, Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Bribery/Intimidation of a Witness, and Resisting or Evading Arrest. Martinez is known by law enforcement officers in the Roswell area due to his significant criminal history and propensity for violence. He is a known member of the Varrio Placasos Surenos gang operating in Artesia, NM.  Martinez is known on the street and has a gang moniker of “Demon”. 

On July, 2, 2011, a 24 year old father was killed in a drive-by shooting in Artesia, NM.  Witnesses at the scene identified the suspect as Christopher Nathan Martinez.  The suspect was not charged with murder at that time. On July 3, 2011, NM Probation and Parole issued an arrest order for Martinez for violating his conditions of release.  On July 7, 2011, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) obtained a warrant for Martinez for possessing a firearm. The United States Marshals Service South West Investigative Fugitive Team (SWIFT) task force was asked by State of NM Probation and Parole and the Artesia Police Department to assist in locating Martinez because it was believed he had fled the state of NM. Law enforcement officers believed Martinez was moving between Midland/Odessa, TX and Artesia, NM. Law enforcement officers were aware Martinez had made threats indicating he would shoot officers rather than go back to prison.

On July 21, 2011, an Odessa Police Department Patrol Officer discovered a stolen vehicle out of Artesia, NM in a motel parking lot in Odessa, TX.  Through investigation the Odessa Police Department learned of the connection between the stolen vehicle and Christopher Nathan Martinez. When Odessa PD was made aware of Martinez’s federal warrant they contacted U.S. Marshals in Midland, TX. Deputy Marshals and local law enforcement officers set up surveillance on Martinez’s motel room. When Martinez exited the motel he was immediately taken into custody without incident.  Martinez admitted to having a firearm in his luggage. Odessa PD seized the luggage and applied for a search warrant. United States Marshal for the District of New Mexico, Conrad E. Candelaria, stated ““an extensive and exhausting coordinated effort by local law enforcement, in partnership with the Marshals Service from New Mexico and Texas led to the arrest of this dangerous fugitive which will bring to an end a reign of terror and violent criminal behavior; no longer will this fugitive harm our citizens in the many communities throughout New Mexico and Texas, as is always the case, the Marshals Service, in step with local, county, state, federal and tribal law enforcement agencies, collectively will pursue those that violate the law and bring them to justice.”

Martinez was arrested on his federal warrant and will receive an initial appearance in federal court in Midland, TX. Martinez is also awaiting extradition back to New Mexico to be seen on his local charges.

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals can be found at


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