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Apologetic shoplifter pulls out firearm in Walgreens

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A repeat offender was charged with a total of four fourth-degree felonies after allegedly revealing a handgun to store personnel and leaving a room after being caught for stealing alcohol.

Gomez

According to a criminal complaint filed in Chaves County Magistrate Court, on Oct. 18, an employee working in the liquor section of Walgreens at 1200 S. Main St. saw 45-year-old David Roy Gomez enter the store and walk around a section as a means to hide from the employee’s sight.

Detective Alberto Alba of the Roswell Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division was told by the employee that she was able to see Gomez concealing bottles of alcohol by looking at the mirrors along the drugstore’s wall.

The employee then rang the store’s alarm, to which Gomez replied, “Yeah, push the code 99, f— you,” as he passed the store counter and walked out.

Manuel Roman, store manager of the Walgreens, told police he was with another employee when they heard a call over their radio in reference to a shoplifting.

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“He mentioned they walked outside and observed that the subject was outside near his bike,” Alba wrote. “(Roman) mentioned that the subject had dropped a bottle of Fireball — which was the item taken.”

After speaking to Gomez and escorting him back inside, Roman told police that the suspect continually apologized to them.

An employee told police that the suspect was getting uneasy, appearing to be nervous.

After Gomez had been informed police had been contacted, he stood up, appearing to be upset, and produced a firearm from his hoodie, according to the complaint.

“(Roman) was unable to describe the gun, only that it was black and had a green dot on it,” Alba wrote. “He said the subject had rushed out. … (Roman) was in fear for his life and the safety of his employees.”

Police said while reviewing surveillance footage of the incident, they were able to make a positive identification on Gomez based on their previous encounters with him, as well as his distinctive hairline and apologetic mannerisms when he gets into trouble with law enforcement.

“The video showed that they did have a brief conversation, and then Mr. Gomez stood up,” Alba said. “You are unable to see the firearm because it appeared that it gets covered by (another employee) when Mr. Gomez attempts to leave. It appears that they did try to stop him just before he walked out.”

Another employee told police that Gomez smelled of alcohol, almost appearing drunk when he and Roman originally approached the suspect outside the store.

Gomez was later arrested and charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a firearm, one count of firearm possession by a felon, and for unlawful carrying of a firearm in a licensed liquor establishment.

Police said Gomez has had at least one prior felony conviction within the last 10 years.

According to online court records, Gomez was charged 12 different times in magistrate and district court from January 1992 to January 2017.

A preliminary examination was set for 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday before Chaves County Magistrate Judge K.C. Rodgers, but was later cancelled.

Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.