By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer
A Hereford man is in custody in connection with nearly two dozen auto burglaries Tuesday in north Clovis.
Balentine Martinez Murillo Jr., 25, was arrested by Curry County Sheriff’s deputies around 7 p.m. Tuesday following a high-speed pursuit, according to police.
He is being held on a $50,000 cash only bond, jail officials said.
Charges include burglary, larceny, aggravated battery and drugs. More charges are pending, according to police.
Police are looking for a second suspect, who they believed escaped sometime during the pursuit.
There were 22 reports of auto burglaries in the parking lots of retail centers on north Prince Street, police said.
Initially located by police about 6 p.m. in the parking lot behind Leal’s restaurant on Prince Street, the two suspects fled from police, according to the release.
Sheriff’s deputies later spotted Murillo’s vehicle on Norris Street and began pursuit, which ended when Murillo crashed in the area of Curry Road 12 and Curry Road G and fled from the vehicle, Undersheriff Wesley Waller said.
Records show the suspects’ vehicle was involved in a traffic accident in the 1000 block of Marvin Hass Boulevard.
Clovis Police Capt. Patrick Whitney said Murillo’s vehicle rammed another vehicle at least twice, and as a result of the crash a child’s arm was broken.
Whitney said police recovered numerous items — everything from purses to gifts — and were busy Wednesday morning documenting the items found in Murillo’s vehicle and returning them to their rightful owners.
Whitney said the incident serves as a reminder residents should be extra careful during the holiday season, when burglary incidents are at higher levels.