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Crime Corner

Local father charged with child neglect

A pair of concerned citizens helped Nye County Sheriff's deputies nab a Pahrump man on child neglect charges.

Jaime Esparaza was arrested Oct. 21 for preliminary child neglect charges after his 11-year-old son was found in a local park at night.

Late last month the duo spotted a juvenile, well past curfew, sitting with what deputies described as a vagrant at Petrack Park.

On subsequent nights, the pair witnessed the same juvenile with the same male at the park, well past 11 p.m.

According to the deputy's arrest report, the pair decided to approach the individuals.

"They advised me that they pretended to bum a smoke off of the vagrant in order to strike up a conversation," the deputy's report stated. "They advised me that the child told them that he often hangs out at the park by himself and seemed to brag about stealing stuff from Walmart with the vagrant at 3 a.m. in the morning at times."

Upon making contact with the juvenile, the deputy quickly suspected the child may possibly be a victim of neglect.

"He stated that he doesn't talk to his mother and added that his father was at home sleeping," the deputy's report stated. "I asked if his father knew where he was and he advised me that he told his father where he was going and also advised me that his little brother and he walk to the park several times a week by themselves from their address to hang out with the vagrant, sometimes until three in the morning."

The deputy also noted the vagrant became somewhat of a caretaker to the children.

"He also advised me that the vagrant had also been feeding him food with his food stamp card," the report stated. "Upon making contact with the vagrant, he stated that he had in fact been taking care of both brothers by feeding them periodically throughout the week. He stated that he does hang out with both kids, but he did not know the father of the children."

When deputies made contact with the father of the children, identified as Esparaza, their suspicions were confirmed.

"Another detective arrived at the juvenile's address and made contact with the father and younger brother," the report noted. "The detective stated when he asked the father if he knew where his son was, he stated that he didn't know, adding that he ran off around 3 p.m. The detective asked the father why he didn't call the sheriff's office to report a missing child and the father replied that he always runs off."

During the investigation, deputies learned the juvenile was the subject of an earlier investigation where he was involved in drug use with two adult males.

"I was contacted by a deputy who advised me that he had just pulled a case number on the 10th of October," according to the report. "The investigation revealed that the father let his son hang out with two male adults who ended up getting him high on methamphetamine later on that day. The deputy further stated that the juvenile was assaulted by one of the adults after a meth pipe was passed around."

As a result, Esparaza was subsequently arrested and transported to the Nye County Detention Center on child neglect charges.

Bad memory, bogus birth certificate, deports felon

A routine traffic stop led to the deportation process of a local resident late last month.

Mario Meza-Bautista was arrested Oct. 26 and booked on preliminary charges of possession of drug paraphernalia, use of another's identification to avoid prosecution, driving with a suspended registration and no proof of a driver's license and insurance.

Nye County Sheriff's Deputies patrolling the south end of town stopped a vehicle with a suspended registration.

Though deputies initiated the stop at the intersection of Navajo and Quarterhorse, the suspect vehicle proceeded to the parking lot of a local convenience store before pulling over.

According to the arrest report, the driver told officers he did not possess a driver's license, but he did have a birth certificate in his possession.

"He identified himself as Shaun Miller who stated that he did not have an ID card, but he did have a birth certificate. Upon viewing it, it did show the name of Shaun Miller."

Deputies soon learned the driver was not who he claimed to be after asking a few routine questions.

"Upon asking the driver what year he was born, he stated 1985, but the birth certificate showed 1983," the report stated. "The detective advised that Miller told him he was born in 1987. Miller was taken into custody for the traffic violations and possession of drug paraphernalia."

Additionally, deputies were able to determine the true identity of the driver as Mario Meza-Bautista when his girlfriend and another individual arrived at the scene.

"After speaking with both individuals it was found that Miller's real name is Mario Mesa-Bautista," the deputy stated. The male individual, advised that Mario was in the United States illegally, and Nye County Sheriff's Office dispatch advised that Mario is a deported felon through Immigration Customs Enforcement."

A female passenger in the vehicle, Marjorie Jimenez, was also arrested and taken into custody after a metal pipe with marijuana residue along with a glass pipe containing methamphetamine residue was discovered under the driver's seat by deputies.

After arriving at the detention center, deputies located a baggie containing suspected methamphetamine in Jimenez' bra.

She was charged with possession of a controlled substance.

Warning shot from firearm lands Beatty man in jail

A Beatty man learned quickly that discharging a firearm in the air to break up a bar fight will result in an arrest.

Cecil Wayne Teague was arrested Oct. 31 on preliminary misdemeanor charges of discharging a firearm in public and resisting a public officer. He was held on $1,920 bail.

The bizarre incident took place at the Sourdough Saloon last Saturday when sheriff's deputies were summoned to the business after a man walked into the establishment and began assaulting a 66-year-old man, according to deputies.

"Upon arrival I observed one male, Mark Lee, lying on his back with blood coming out of his nose and another male, Cecil Teague, kneeling next to him," the deputy stated in the arrest report. "I was advised by several bystanders that Teague discharged a firearm during the altercation."

The deputy went on to state that Teague was the victim of the assault, when Lee tried to break up the altercation.

"I spoke with a witness who stated she observed a Hispanic male come into the saloon and started striking Teague in the face with both of his hands," the deputy stated. "The witness stated Lee tried to intervene by placing the Hispanic male in a headlock. She further advised me that she began to call the sheriff's office when she observed a Hispanic male on top of Lee striking him repeatedly in the face with his fist. The witness stated the Hispanic male stopped striking Lee when Teague discharged his firearm into the air."

The report also stated Teague showed little interest in being handcuffed and carted off to jail by the deputy.

"I approached Teague to place him in wrist restraints for officer safety and in doing so, he became aggressive and combative," the deputy stated. "He began to tense up his right arm as I was placing it behind his back and he tried to tuck his right arm underneath his stomach to keep me from restraining him."

After ignoring several commands to comply, both the deputy and Teague fell to the ground, where Teague was eventually placed in restraints.

He then felt compelled to talk to the deputy.

"Teague advised me that he discharged this firearm one time during the physical altercation to keep the fight from escalating further," the deputy said. "It should be noted there were approximately five people outside while he discharged his weapon. The firearm was located approximately five feet away from where he was standing with one round discharged from it."

Teague was placed under arrest and transported to the Nye County Detention Center.

Deputies said the Hispanic male, identified as Francisco Mendoza-Ochoa, admitted his involvement in the physical altercation with Lee and Teague.

Mendoza was placed under arrest for gross misdemeanor battery times two and elder abuse. He was held on $3,780 bail.

Deputies did not indicate a motive for the altercation.

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @sharrispvt.

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