A woman who was wanted on two outstanding arrest warrants is now facing additional criminal charges after she allegedly sped away from police Wednesday with two children seated in the backseat of the vehicle she was driving.
Diana Rae Ortega, 25, of Roswell, now faces two counts each of abandonment or abuse of a child, does not result in death or great bodily harm; along with one count each of aggravated fleeing a law enforcement officer and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer, court documents filed Thursday in Chaves County Magistrate Court state.
The incident occurred Wednesday at about 3:07 p.m. when a Roswell Police officer and two members of the U.S. Marshals Service were searching for Ortega near the 1600 block of West Summit Avenue location listed as her residence.
Court documents state that two bench warrants were issued for Ortega: one on Oct. 30 for failure to appear in New Mexico 5th Judicial District Court on charges of shoplifting, over $2,500 but less than $20,000, and two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
The second bench warrant was issued for Ortega for failure to appear in Magistrate Court on Aug. 28 for a case in which Ortega is charged with one count each resisting, evading, or obstructing an officer and unlawful use of a telephone.
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Ortega was allegedly spotted by the Roswell officer while she was driving a red Toyota and wearing a surgical mask. The officer recognized the woman as Ortega based on past encounters with her.
Ortega then looked towards the police unit and allegedly sped off, court documents state. After checking the plates on the Toyota, the vehicle was found to be registered to a relation of Ortega.
The officer followed Ortega and then conducted a traffic stop at the area of West McGaffey Street and South Wyoming Avenue. The officer then approached the Toyota and instructed Ortega to exit the vehicle due to the outstanding warrants for her arrest. She reportedly did not comply.
A U.S. Marshal’s vehicle then pulled up in front of Ortega’s vehicle in an attempt to keep her from driving away. Ortega though then reportedly drove past the officer and around the U.S. Marshal’s vehicle at an accelerated rate of speed.
The officer pursued Ortega, according to court documents, as she weaved around vehicles and failed to stop for a traffic light at the intersection of West McGaffey Street and South Sunset Avenue.
Ortega proceed to head east at a high rate of speed, swerving around other vehicles in the roadway, and turned south onto Union Avenue. Court documents state Ortega continued to travel south, without regard to stops signs or the presence of other vehicles on the road.
Court documents state the pursuit ended when Ortega parked at a 700 block of Jaffa Street residence, and then allegedly ran to the door and tried to enter the home while allegedly holding one of her children.
The officer grabbed her and told her to get onto the ground, which she did not do, according to court documents. The officer did get her down onto the ground though she continued to physically resist.
Once she was placed in handcuffs and was on the ground, court documents state, Ortega tried to kick her feet, leading to her being placed in leg shackles to restrain her.
When later asked why she had driven away during the traffic stop with the children in the car, court documents state Ortega said she did because she was scared.
Electronic court records show Magistrate Judge E.J. Fouratt on Friday set bond for Ortega at $50,000 cash or surety.
Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301 or email@example.com.