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GPD capture Desiderio

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Suspect reportedly stabbed victim near Camille’s

By Bernie Dotson

Sun Correspondent

One of McKinley County’s most wanted is now behind bars at the McKinley County Adult Detention Center on an aggravated battery with a deadly weapon charge, officials said.

Marinda Spencer, public information officer at the Gallup Police Department, said Darrell Desiderio, Sr., was taken into custody Aug. 5 after a brief chase downtown. According to the arrest warrant, Desiderio is being held on a $10,000 cash-only bond.

“We were able to apprehend [Mr. Desiderio],” Spencer said. “He put up a short chase, but he is now in jail.”

Desiderio, 39, was the prime suspect in a downtown stabbing that took place Aug. 18. The name of the person stabbed was Andrew Garcia, Jr., age unavailable, who was flown by medical helicopter to an Albuquerque hospital where he was treated for life-threatening injuries. Garcia said at the time that he confronted Desiderio because he believed Desiderio stole his brother’s backpack.

According to witness statements, Desiderio and Garcia got into the fight about 9 am, and the incident moved from the McKinley Courthouse square to near Camille’s. A police report on the matter states that Gallup Police officer Douglas Hoffman spotted Desiderio in a vehicle on Aug. 24 near the intersection of Coal Avenue and Fourth Street.

Hoffman wrote in the report that he recognized Desiderio as someone who was wanted by the law. Upon seeing Hoffman, Desiderio bailed out of the car and ran south with Hoffman in pursuit. Hoffman and GPD Officer Dominic Molina caught Desiderio as he tried to scale a wall.