New Mexico: Body cam shows a disoriented District Attorney Francesca Estevez on a DWI stop who was allowed to drive away by officers


From KOB

06/24/2016 — KOB has obtained shocking video of what appears to be a drunk driver dangerously swerving across narrow county roads near Silver City. When police arrived, they soon realized that driver is a popular elected official.

It might surprise some to learn that the elected official drove away free not long after she was pulled over.

Francesca Martinez District Attorney for Grant, Hildago and Luna Counties New Mexico

She is Francesca Estevez, the district attorney for Grant, Luna and Hidalgo counties.

After pouring through lapel camera video, it’s hard to say Estevez was treated like anyone else during the stop. According to officers she was acting strange, stumbling, and even practicing a field sobriety test on her own.

It all started with a 911 call and cell phone video taken by a concerned driver. The video catches a Dodge sedan weaving and swerving all over Highway 180 near Silver City.

That driver called police. When they caught up to that driver, everything gets surreal.

“How are ya?” Silver City Police officer Leticia Lopez said as she approaches the car.

“I have a flat! And I kept going over, and over!” Estevez said from inside the car. “I was coming in from Deming and the car kept swinging this way!”


It might surprise some to learn that the elected official drove away free not long after she was pulled over.


She told the Silver City officer she was in Deming, and just moments later changed her story.

“You were in Deming?” Lopez asked.

“No, I was coming from Lordsburg,” Estevez said.

Lopez appears to play along with the flat tire story, getting a jack from Estevez’s cluttered trunk. She had won re-election to the DA’s office just days earlier.

“There you go, Francesca. How are ya? Congratulations,” Lopez said.

“Well, I’m very nervous. Cause I couldn’t control the car,” Estevez responds.

Lopez and a rookie Kyle Spurgeon seem to be delaying the traffic stop. They seem to be using the flat tire to keep Estevez in the parking lot.

Eventually, they called over a corporal as Estevez started to weave a tale, struggled with her phone, and went on a strange rant about her bad relationship with police.

“We don’t want the U.S. Department of Justice to start looking down here,” she said. “It’s gotten to that point. Most of you are good.”

Her speech was slurred as she spoke to the officers.


New Mexico State Police Chief Pete N. Kassetas

“How’s Deming doing?” Lopez said.

“Deming’s doing great,” Estevez responded in a sing-song voice.

Estevez fell into the passenger seat of her car twice.

At some point, police reports indicate Silver City cops called in New Mexico State Police to take over the stop. Officer Alyssa Carasco arrived.

“I smell just perfume, but I don’t know if she’s on prescription meds,” Lopez said to Carasco.

But Carasco seems completely disinterested in performing a DWI stop. Lopez seemed okay with it, and Estevez randomly asked if she’s a bad person. ....MORE

New Mexico State Police patrol car

New Mexico State Police patrol car