Skip to main content
Press Release

Canoncito Man Pleads Guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office, announced today that Landen Toledo pleaded guilty in federal court to voluntary manslaughter. Toledo, 20, of Canoncito, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, will remain in custody pending sentencing, which has not been scheduled.

According to publicly available court records, on May 27, 2022, Toledo, Cole Ray Shorty and Keon Apachito went to the home of John Doe to retrieve Shorty’s backpack. The group approached John Doe while he was seated in the driver’s seat of his car.  When Shorty opened the back door of the car to look for his backpack, John Doe got out of the car with a baseball bat. Toledo grabbed John Doe by the wrists and threw him to the ground and kicked him in the stomach several times, causing John Doe to drop the baseball bat. Shorty picked up the baseball bat and hit John Doe on the head with the baseball bat. Others in the group hit John Doe’s with a golf club and stomped on his leg. John Doe fell to the ground and tried to crawl away.  Shorty hit John Doe in the head again, then the group left John Doe unconscious on the ground. The Office of the Medical Inspector’s found that the cause of John Doe’s death was blunt head trauma.

Cole Ray Shorty pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter on January 19, 2024, and faces up to 15 years in prison. Apachito remains out of custody pending trial, which is currently scheduled for June 10, 2024.

At sentencing, Toledo faces up to 15 years in prison.

The FBI Albuquerque Field Office investigated this case with assistance from the Navajo Police Department and Navajo Department of Criminal Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Brittany DuChaussee is prosecuting the case.

# # #


Updated February 5, 2024

Indian Country Law and Justice
Press Release Number: 24-54