The Española Hospital was put on lockdown in the early morning hours of Aug. 21, following the beating of a couple at the Santo Niño Trailer Park, because they feared retaliation.
At 12:43 a.m., Española Police Officers Adrian Moya, Jose Lujan and Darren Cruz responded to a call regarding a fight in progress at the trailer park on Corlett Road. There were allegedly 10 people involved and they had weapons.
When the police arrived, they were unable to find anyone fighting or in distress, so they left. Another call came in around 1:30 a.m., and Moya was dispatched to the hospital because a man, later identified as Michael Lopez, 37, of La Mesilla, and a woman, later identified as Vanessa Martinez, 36, of Santa Fe, were there and had been beaten at the trailer park.
Moya saw that Lopez was bleeding heavily from his head and had cuts and bruises on his face.
“I observed a deformity on Michael’s left forearm and swelling,” Moya wrote in his incident report. “I asked Michael what occurred, Michael said he went to the Santo Niño trailer park because his niece Esperanza Aragon called him saying she needed help, and that ‘they hurt her.’”
Moya asked Lopez who “they” are but Lopez couldn’t give an answer. He did tell the officer that he was hit several times in the head with a shovel and didn’t remember anything but trying to protect his girlfriend, Martinez.
In speaking with Martinez, Moya saw she was bleeding from the face and also had cuts and bruises.
“Vanessa advised me the fight ensued because it was racially motivated,” Moya wrote. “Vanessa advised me she and Michael went to the Santo Niño trailer park to pick up her mother from a friend’s house. Vanessa said while proceeding to the residence approximately 15 Mexican nationals began to yell at her and Michael stating ‘(expletive) you, (expletive) Chicanos.’”
Lopez stopped the vehicle and told the group not to talk to them like that. Martinez got out of the vehicle and 15 people jumped them and began beating them. Martinez told Moya that the women in the group began handing the men blunt objects so they could hit Lopez.
“Vanessa said she lost consciousness several times and just remembers Michael putting her inside the vehicle before leaving the area,” Moya wrote. “I asked Vanessa if she recognized any of the individuals around and she said no.”
The emergency room nurses told Moya that Lopez might have a broken or fractured skull and a broken forearm. They told the officer they put the hospital on lockdown because Lopez and Martinez were in fear of their lives and were afraid of retaliation.
Moya took a report and wrote that he will forward it to the Criminal Investigations Division for review.