Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

Albuquerque man with history of stolen cars sentenced to 2.5 years in prison

ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KRQE) – John Benavidez, the man who keeps getting caught in stolen cars, is headed back to prison for a destructive rampage in 2021. Benavidez was driving a stolen pickup when he hit a car on I-40 and then took off. When police caught up to him, he rammed a police cruiser and fled, then hit another car at Carlisle and Menaul and knocked out a traffic light.

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Under the terms of a plea deal, Benavidez was facing one to four years in prison. Judge David Murphy split the difference and ordered Benavidez to serve two-and-a-half years and to take advantage of substance abuse and mental health treatment. Benavidez promised to shape up, “I’m just really grateful for another chance, I’ve learned a lot in prison and it’s ready to prove to myself and to you guys, to show that I’m ready to do good again.”

News 13 covered Benavidez back in 2017 when he and a friend took a stolen car right to the Metro courthouse so the friend could get his court-ordered ankle monitor put on. Benavidez pleaded guilty in that case and to driving another stolen car a few months later.

He was out on probation in those cases when he was arrested again in May 2021 and accused of driving a stolen car in Belen. That was just three months before his arrest in this latest case.

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