By Carlos Padilla
An Elephant Butte resident who admitted to stealing electrical utilities and admitted to being in possession of stolen property is facing criminal charges for violations of the Controlled Substance Act as well as burglary, larceny and receiving stolen property.
Documents filed in Seventh Judicial District Court on Wednesday, Sept. 10, by Sierra County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Joshua Baker detail the events that led to the arrest of 30-year-old Jesse J. Clements of the 100-block of Camino Encantado in Elephant Butte.
On Sunday, Aug. 31, Sheriff’s Deputy Clay Cheney took a report of a burglary from a resident in the 100-block of Camino Encantado. The man reported that his camper had been burglarized, and reported a 30-gallon Craftsman air compressor as well as an inner tube had been stolen from a shed on his property. The man told Deputy Cheney that the Sierra County Electric Co-op electric meter had been stolen from his property as well.
Deputy Cheney followed drag marks left by the air compressor to the northwest corner of the property toward a neighboring residence located directly west of the man’s property.
On Tuesday, Sept. 9, Sierra Electric Co-op personnel contacted Deputy Cheney, stating that the residents of 190 Camino Encantado were possibly stealing electricity. A crew member from the company told Deputy Cheney that the electricity had been shut off and the meter pulled from the residence due to non-payment of their utility bill. The crew member also reported that he noticed an electric meter in use at 190 Camino Encantado. When the company’s personnel checked the meter, they noted the electric meter – No. 474 – was the stolen meter from the neighboring property.
A search warrant was requested for 190 Camino Encantado and officials identified a number of individuals associated with the property.
Upon entering the residence, with the search warrant in hand, Investigator Baker made contact with Mr. Clements, who was secured in handcuffs and escorted out of the home.
Clements admitted that he had gone to the neighboring property and stole the electric meter from his neighbor to use at his residence because his electricity had been disconnected. Clements denied stealing the air compressor and inner tube from the property. Clements admitted that a small red generator located in his shed may have been stolen. Clements would not tell Investigator Baker where he had obtained the generator, but stated that he believed it was stolen due to who had given it to him.
An amended search warrant was obtained after Investigator Baker discovered a homemade pipe with a burnt residue located in the bulb portion of the device. Clements reportedly stated that it was his and probably was used for smoking methamphetamine.
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