Two Santa Fe men were charged with armed robbery late last week after police said they had beaten a man in his hotel room and stolen his wallet.

In a separate incident a day later, Santa Fe officers arrested an Oklahoma man on suspicion of crashing a car he had stolen while armed with a hammer and a sickle.

According to criminal complaints filed in Santa Fe County Magistrate Court, Joseph Gallegos, 25,, and Kobe Romero, 19, are charged with one count each of armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery in the hotel incident. Gallegos also is charged with possession of a controlled substance, while Romero is charged with possession of alcoholic beverages by a minor.

The accuser told police he and a friend were hanging out inside their hotel room Thursday when the friend let Romero, Gallegos and two women inside, the criminal complaints said.

Gallegos, who was holding a handgun, rushed the accuser and punched him in the head multiple times while he was on the ground, the complaints said. Romero took the man’s wallet, and the group fled in a gold Chevrolet Blazer, according to the documents.

Santa Fe County sheriff’s deputies arrested Romero and Gallegos early Friday morning.

Later that afternoon, officers were dispatched to St. Francis Drive and Zia Road for a welfare check on a man who reportedly was attempting to wave down passing cars.

The man told police he was from out of town and had his 2011 Subaru Legacy stolen by someone he had asked for help locating his hotel.

The suspect, later identified as 30-year-old Tylor Eich of Tulsa, Okla., agreed to help as long as the driver gave him a ride, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday in Magistrate Court.

Before they reached the hotel, Eich asked to be let out of the car. But when he pulled over, the man said, Eich wielded a hammer and what appeared to be a sickle and ordered him to get out.

An officer later spotted Eich driving the Subaru near the intersection of Zia Road and St. Francis Drive, the criminal complaint said.

The officer began pursuing Eich, who drove through a red light near the intersection of St. Michael’s Drive and Arroyo Chamiso Road, the complaint said. Eich then continued east on St. Michael’s Drive before traveling south in the northbound lanes of Old Pecos Trail at speeds of up to 100 mph.

He crashed as he attempted to get on Interstate 25. The Subaru hit signs and began rolling down a ravine, but Eich was able to get out and flee on foot, the complaint said.

He eventually surrendered and was arrested.

Eich is facing one count each of armed robbery, aggravated fleeing from a law enforcement officer, reckless driving and concealing his identity.

(3) comments

Rachel Thompson

I was also very disturbed by the New Mexican's failure to report the location of this incident. It seems to me there is a strong public interest in knowing this. I spoke with City of Santa Fe police spokesperson Greg Gurule and he said the incident occurred at the EconoLodge at 3752 Cerrillos Road, at 2:29 a.m. on the 17th. I did not ask for the name of the victim. Isn't journalism all about the Who What When Where How and Why? This story was missing at least two of those elements: The when (can't we do better than "late last week"? and the where. I wrote to Amanda Martinez, the reporter, and got this back: "Amanda Martinez no longer works at the Santa Fe New Mexican." And then there is an article this morning with her byline. What's going on?

Khal Spencer

A hammer and a sickle? Wow, a Marxist car thief!

Dan Frazier

Is there some reason that these two incidents are reported in a single article? Are they connected?It is more confusing for the reader. Shouldn't the name or location of the hotel be reported?

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