Blood bank customer accused of stealing ‘prize’ TV, making getaway in taxi

Samuel Aguilar

Las Cruces Police Department

Las Cruces police arrested a customer of a Las Cruces blood bank who is suspected of breaking into the business and stealing a television that was prominently displayed as a promotional giveaway, police said.

Samuel Aguilar, 27, is charged with one count of non-residential burglary, a fourth-degree felony. Aguilar was booked into the Doña Ana County jail with bond set at $10,000.

Around 1:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, Las Cruces Police were dispatched to a silent burglary alarm at Las Cruces Biological at 805 S. Main Street. Officers found the front glass door of the business had been smashed, and it appeared that someone had entered the building.

The manager of the business arrived and immediately noticed that a 51-inch flat screen TV with a “Win This” flyer taped to its box was missing. The TV had been displayed in its original box on top of soda machine near the front door.

Store management checked the store’s security video, which showed the suspect smashing the window, entering the business and stealing the TV. The manager recognized the suspect as Aguilar, a customer of the business, who had donated blood on Wednesday, police said.

About 45 minutes after the initial call a Las Cruces police officer on El Paseo Road saw a yellow taxicab with a large TV box sticking out of its trunk. The officer stopped the vehicle and recognized Aguilar as one of the passengers in the back seat.

The TV stolen from Las Cruces Biological, still with its “Win This” flyer taped to its box, was found in the trunk of the taxi, police said.

The driver of the taxi and its two other passengers have not been charged in this case.



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