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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Former New Mexico State Police officer sentenced to seven years in prison for distribution of marijuana, methamphetamine

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, announced today that Daniel Capehart was sentenced on June 7 to seven years in prison. A federal jury convicted Capehart, 37, of Bloomfield, New Mexico, on July 22, 2021, of three counts of distribution of marijuana and methamphetamine, two of which occurred within 1,000 feet of a school or playground in San Juan County, New Mexico.

According to court records, on three occasions, Capehart, who at the time was a patrol officer with the New Mexico State Police, provided illegal drugs to people he had encountered during his duties as an officer. In all three instances, undercover officers were investigating Capehart’s conduct. On June 21, 2018, and again on June 23, 2018, Capehart delivered marijuana that he thought would be received by a 16-year-old girl he met during a traffic stop. On June 28, 2018, Capehart executed a plan to conduct a traffic stop, confiscate methamphetamine from the driver, and provide the methamphetamine to a woman he had met through is duties as a police officer. The driver, however, was an undercover officer. On June 29, 2018, Capehart drove to a local park and delivered more than five grams of methamphetamine. Capehart was arrested later that day.

Upon his release from prison, Capehart will be subject to eight years of supervised release.

The FBI, the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office and the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Region II Narcotics Task Force investigated this case. The HIDTA Region II Narcotics Task Force is comprised of officers and investigators from the Farmington Police Department, San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, Bloomfield Police Department and Aztec Police Department, and is part of the HIDTA program created by Congress with the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988.  HIDTA is a program of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) which provides assistance to federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies operating in areas determined to be critical drug-trafficking regions of the United States and seeks to reduce drug trafficking and production by facilitating coordinated law enforcement activities and information sharing.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Mexico prosecuted the case as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Press Release Number: 
22-132
Updated June 8, 2022