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Shabriel Lopez

The Eddy County Sheriff’s Office Detective Division and Crime Stoppers of Eddy County are seeking the public’s assistance in locating an Artesia woman wanted in connection with the murder of a Roswell man.

Shabriel R. Lopez is currently wanted on an outstanding warrant for her involvement in the murder of Danny E. Mendes.

Mendes, 49, was found deceased early Sunday morning near the intersection of Haystack and Four Dinkus roads south of Artesia. The cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma to the head.

The ECSO issued a release Tuesday saying Mendes had last been seen leaving Dexter in a 1990s-model green Ford Taurus with an unidentified male and female.

Michael A. Jimenez, 26, of Artesia was arrested late Wednesday afternoon on an open count of murder in the first degree after investigators were able to match his footprints to prints found near Mendes’ body.

Shabriel Lopez

He was booked into the Eddy County Detention Center on a $100,000 bond and now awaits preliminary examination at 2 p.m. Thursday, March 23, in Carlsbad Magistrate Court.

Jimenez was one of the individuals detained Wednesday following a standoff with ECSO task force agents and Artesia Police Department officers at 405 W. Cleveland Ave. Law enforcement remained on scene for an additional two-plus hours calling for Lopez, whom they believed to also be inside, to exit, but after utilizing a flashbang device and gaining entry to the home, Lopez was not found.

According to the criminal complaint, that operation was the result of a tip received Wednesday from an individual who told investigators Jimenez had admitted to killing Mendes and had also been looking for a hammer authorities believe could be the murder weapon.

Anyone with potential information as to Lopez’s whereabouts is urged to contact Det. Robert Navarrette at 575-887-7551 or, anonymously, Crime Stoppers of Eddy County at 1-844-786-7227; by texting the code word StopACrime plus the tip to CRIMES (274637); or via the Tipsoft link at cityofcarlsbadnm.com/police.cfm.

Information leading to an arrest could result in a reward of up to $1,000.