Doña Ana County



A grand jury has indicted seven Doña Ana County Detention Center inmates following an affray that happened on the evening of Sept. 23, 2012 inside two dayrooms at the detention center.

Ezequiel Gonzales, Jonathan Garcia, David Benavidez, Jarvaughn Coleman, Cornelio Holguin, Marcos Barela and Arnold Hofeldt were all indicted on charges of assault on a jail, escape or attempt to escape from a jail, arson (over $1,000), criminal damage to property (over $1,000) and conspiracy.

The riot broke out reportedly over some clipping shears that were issued to cut inmates’ hair. Detention administration officers on duty said inmates in one of the dayrooms were given until 5 p.m. to finish using the hair clippers that had been given to them earlier that morning.

When their deadline came, inmates refused to return the clippers and were given a half-hour extension to complete their haircuts.

At 5:30 p.m., inmates were reportedly still refusing to return the shears and became combative, breaking several windows in the pod using a broom handle and a piece of metal that was broken off of a desk inside the pod.

One inmate also set fire to a mattress inside the dayroom. No injuries were reported in the incident.

The affray damaged doors, windows, mattresses and other miscellaneous items in the dayroom. Costs to repair the area were estimated at a minimum of $10,000.

The dayroom that sustained the most damage has been completely repaired and is in use. The other dayroom is expected to be back in use within 10 days, when painting and cleaning will be finished by a team of inmate workers.

Through the course of the investigation, the remaining inmates that were housed in each dayroom at the time of the affray were determined to have only been guilty of not following orders by jail staff and being unruly.

Their behavior did not result in criminal charges, and will be handled by jail administration through disciplinary action.
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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call Doña Ana County Sheriff's Department Public Information Officer Kelly Jameson at (575) 386-4302 or after hours at (575) 635-7168.