‘All clear’ after W. Picacho shut down over mysterious item


The Las Cruces Police Department and the Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Office briefly shut down a portion of W. Picacho Avenue Monday after “an unknown item” was discovered at the Adult Probation and Parole office.

Police blocked traffic in both directions between Motel Boulevard and 17th Street “out of an abundance of caution,” a news release read. Agencies on scene included the Las Cruces Police Department, Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Office, New Mexico State Police and Homeland Security Investigations.

Shortly before noon, Dan Trujillo, a spokesperson for the LCPD, said that an ‘all clear’ signal was given after discovering that the suspicious box was empty.

According to the Department of Corrections website, the Adult Probation and Parole Office houses 73 employees and is a hub for several diversion courts and treatment programs in southern New Mexico.

The situation in Las Cruces came as New Mexico State Police also investigated potential threats near the magistrate court and probation office in Deming.

“A security incident occurred early today at the Luna County Magistrate Court building in Deming. Law enforcement is investigating. The magistrate court is closed for the day, and as a precaution, the district court in Deming is also closed today,” a Luna County Magistrate Count spokesperson said in a statement.

“At this time, there is no way to determine if this callout has any definitive connection to incidents reported elsewhere in New Mexico,” Las Cruces police said, referring to the situation in Deming. As a precaution, the Luna County Magistrate Court as well as the Sixth Judicial District courthouse in Deming were closed for the day. It is not clear whether the incidents were related. Police activity in Deming also closed Interstate 10 in both directions from milepost 81 to 85, with traffic diverted to Pine street, per a news release from the state Department of Transportation. Luna County also closed its offices until noon, citing law enforcement instructions.

This story will be updated as new information becomes available.