Law | Politics

Lawsuit blames county for arrest by Pojoaque Pueblo officers

A lawsuit blames Santa Fe County, New Mexico, for the actions of police officers from Pojoaque Pueblo.

Under an agreement with the county, the tribe can enforce state laws against non-Indians. But the county has failed to ensure tribal officers are properly trained, supervised or disciplined, according to the lawsuit.

“In essence, Defendants sought to create a situation where the Santa Fe County Sheriff got something for nothing while citizens … could be abused without consequence to Santa Fe County and its Sheriff," the complaint states, The Albuquerque Journal reported.

The lawsuit stems from the arrest of Luciano Trujillo by tribal officers in March 2011. Trujillo claims he was targeted by the officers because his son, who is now a state lawmaker, was a political rival of another lawmaker supported by the tribe.

The other lawmaker was Rep. Ben Luján (D), who died last year after a battle with cancer.

Get the Story:
State rep’s dad sues over 2011 pueblo arrest (The Santa Fe New Mexican 3/20)
Lawsuit challenges tribal authority (The Albuquerque Journal 3/19)

Related Stories:
Pojoaque Pueblo gets deal to restore police officer commissions (1/8)
Editorial: Officers from Pojoaque Pueblo help to keep the peace (10/4)
County revokes commissions for Pojoaque Pueblo police officers (10/2)

Join the Conversation