A Rio Rancho man is accused of stealing a Corrales Fire Department truck and taking it for a westward ride on Interstate 40 Tuesday morning.

Dennis L. Chavez, 35, was later arrested that day. He is charged with transferring a stolen motor vehicle, aggravated fleeing from a law enforcement officer, criminal damage to property and resisting, evading or obstructing a peace officer.

CFD responded to a medical emergency call around 7:13 a.m. at a home in Corrales, according to Tanya Lattin, CFD fire commander. The truck was stolen while at the residence around 7:55 a.m.

New Mexico State Police were contacted by the Laguna Police Department at around 8:06 a.m., saying they had located and were pursuing the stolen truck, according to a State Police news release. The truck was headed west on I-40 near mile post 135.


The driver of the truck – later identified as Chavez – drove over tire deflation devices placed by State Police and Laguna Police near mile post 114. He then crashed into a wall in the parking lot of the Dancing Eagle Gas Station before getting out of the vehicle and being arrested, the release said.

State Police said Chavez had an outstanding felony arrest warrant from the 2nd Judicial District Court in Albuquerque. He is being held at the Cibola County Correctional Center Core Civic in Milan.