By Ryan Lengerich
TUCUMCARI — A man suspected of killing two Oklahoma residents on Saturday is known to have frequented eastern New Mexico in recent months, officials said on Wednesday.
Scott James Eizember, 42, is suspected of killing an elderly couple inside their home in Depew, Okla., officials with the Creek County (Okla.) Sheriff’s Department said.
Eizember “then attacked members of his ex-girlfriend’s family, severely beating a woman and shooting her 16-year-old grandson,” according to information released by the sheriff’s department.
The son is in critical condition, officials said.
A manhunt in the nearby Bristow, Okla., area was called off Tuesday and Eizember remains at large. Law officials said they consider him armed and dangerous.
San Jon Police Chief Ben Gates said Eizember was seen in May riding San Jon streets on a bicycle, claiming he was collecting money for Sept. 11 attack victims.
“The first time he came through, I believe it was a Sunday and he stayed for church,” Gates said. “Everybody thought he was an OK guy.”
Gates said Eizember returned to San Jon on Aug. 24 when he asked a local couple he had met at the church for money. Gates first encountered Eizember three days later when he arrested the man for possession of a stolen vehicle.
Eizember was held at the Quay County detention center from Aug. 27 to Sept. 9 when the charges were dismissed for a lack of evidence, court documents show.
Upon his release from jail, Eizember sought aid at the Casa De La Hope La, a transient rescue mission on First Street in Tucumcari. Shelter director Bill Bowman was informed of Eizember’s alleged killings by local law enforcement Wednesday afternoon.
“I know he has been here,” Bowman said when he was shown a wanted poster.
Bowman produced a file that indicated Eizember entered the shelter about 1 p.m. on Sept. 9 and said he needed to get to Detroit. Eizember presented a Michigan driver’s license with a Garden City, Mich., address.
Bowman said Eizember’s information was verified and he was given a bus ticket to Amarillo.
New Mexico State Police and local authorities are asking community members to call any law enforcement agency immediately if they see Eizember.
A warrant has been issued, accusing him of shooting with intent to kill and assault and battery, officials said.
“Do not approach him,” said New Mexico State Police Lt. Nathan Wallace.