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Man arrested on sexual assault charge

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Chaves County deputies arrested a man early Sunday, hours after he allegedly held a woman in a motel room and sexually assaulted her.

Larry Dean Gillard, 59, was arrested at 1:15 a.m. Sunday on one count each of criminal sexual penetration and kidnapping, according to an affidavit filed Monday in Chaves County Magistrate Court.

A motion for pretrial detention of Gillard has been filed by the District Attorney’s Office and a hearing has been scheduled for Friday in New Mexico’s 5th Judicial District Court in Chaves County to determine whether he will remain detained without bail up through trial.

Chaves County deputies responded Saturday at 3:51 p.m. to a call from an employee at a 2300 block of North Main Street business regarding a possible domestic violence incident, according to court documents.

Deputies later learned while en route to the location that the incident was possibly a sexual assault involving a suspect with a weapon.

The victim, a woman, later interviewed by deputies, fled from a nearby motel where she claimed to have been held against her will and sexually assaulted by a Black male in his 50s wearing a white muscle shirt, but whose name she did not know.

When deputies went to the motel to try and question the suspect, he was not there.

He was later identified as Gillard via a copy of his Mississippi driver’s license. According to court documents, the motel manager later confirmed Gillard had rented a room and showed deputies surveillance camera footage of him doing so.

The woman, who is unfamiliar with Roswell, was emotionally shaken and walking along Union Street earlier in the day while attempting to find the police station, when Gillard pulled up in a black pickup truck and offered her a ride, court documents state.

The woman had told Gillard she was involved in a domestic violence incident and asked him to take her to the police station, and he agreed to do so.

Court documents state the woman later told police Gillard then began driving with her to various motels and exhibiting suspicious behavior.

Gillard then allegedly took the woman to a motel in the 2300 block of North Main Street, rented a room and said he would take her to the police after she had relaxed.

The woman later told deputies that after they entered the room, Gillard locked the door, ordered her to sit down and made it clear he wanted her to pay him back for the room through sexual activity.

After he smoked some marijuana, court documents state he again said he wanted her to pay him back for the room through sexual activity, which she said that she did not want to do. He then allegedly pinned her down on the bed with one arm and began to grab and sexually assault her.

The woman later informed deputies Gillard also told her he had a gun. Deputies though did not find a firearm in the motel room when they executed a search warrant.

Following the alleged assault, she then ran away after having convinced Gillard to let her step outside the room to smoke a cigarette.

She ran to a nearby business and hid as she saw the black pickup traveling around searching for her. A male employee of the business then spotted the panicked woman and, at her urging, called 911.

Through research, deputies later learned of a 100 block of Calle Del Sol residence in Roswell where Gillard might be located.

According to court documents, deputies found a black pickup at the residence registered to Gillard and a woman.

Gillard was later transported by deputies to the sheriff’s office and interviewed.

Though at first he denied ever having been with a female in the motel room, Gillard later admitted to having stopped to help the female on Union Avenue after she had flagged him down.

Gillard told deputies he rented her a room at the motel and went into the room with her.

According to documents, he said she brought up the idea of paying him back for the room through sexual activity.

According to court documents, although Gillard said he touched the woman’s breasts on the outside of her shirt, he denied having touched her “skin to skin” or sexually assaulting her.

Gillard said the woman then left the room and ran across the street.

He admitted to driving around after the woman left the room, but said that he was “cruising” and not searching for her.

Gillard informed deputies that he then went home and was planning to go check on the woman the next day, according to court documents.

Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext, 301, or breakingnews@rdrnews.com.