Published: 12:05 am, Sun. Dec. 1st, 2019
ARTESIA — An Artesia man was arrested on DWI and assault upon a peace officer charges after attempting to resist officers after he was pulled over last week for erratic driving.
An Artesia Police Department officer was on patrol around 12:14 a.m. Nov. 24 in the area of First Street and Richey Avenue when a vehicle heading west on Richey was observed turning abruptly south onto First at a high rate of speed, swerving across the dividing lines.
The officer was driving approximately 65 mph and was unable to catch up to the vehicle until the First and Main intersection, at which time the vehicle turned west onto Main, travelling faster than the 25- mph speed limit and serving from side to side.
The officer engaged their lights to perform a traffic stop, and the vehicle turned into a parking spot at Fifth and Main streets.
According the criminal complaint, the driver immediately exited.
The officer could smell an odor of alcohol on his person and was able to recognize the driver as Juan Antonio Rivera, 30, of Artesia.
The complaint states Rivera told the officer he was driving poorly due to being behind the wheel of a new vehicle and having just been in a fight with his wife. The officer observed Rivera’s behavior to be erratic.
After being asked to submit to a field sobriety test, which he refused, Rivera began walking toward the intersection of Fifth and Main streets, at which time he was handcuffed. According to the complaint, he then told officers he would submit to a field sobriety test if the handcuffs were removed.
Officers, however, did not feel it was safe to remove the handcuffs, and Rivera became argumentative, threatening an assisting lawenforcement officer in Spanish. He was subsequently placed under arrest and placed in a patrol vehicle, the window of which he began banging his head against.
Upon arrival at the Artesia Detention Center, Rivera reportedly attempted to headbutt an officer after he was removed from the patrol vehicle. Rivera refused a breathalyzer test and was escorted to a detox cell, where he began to push against officers as they attempted to remove his handcuffs.
After one handcuff was removed, the complaint states, Rivera lunged at an offer and threatened to fight him.
Rivera was subsequently charged with aggravated DWI, speeding, failure to maintain traffic lanes, assault upon a peace officer, and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer. He was arraigned Nov.
25 in Artesia Magistrate Court and is scheduled to appear before Judge Jimmy C. Foster for pretrial hearing at 1 p.m. Jan. 8, 2020.