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Jail escapee returned to Pagosa

Jason Snow, 24, is again being held in the Archuleta County Detention Center, following more than six months in jail in New Mexico.

After escaping from the ACDC in July and being apprehended three days later across the New Mexico state line, Snow was taken to the Rio Arriba County Adult Detention Facility in Tierra Amarilla, N.M., where he was held until his extradition on Feb. 8.

After his return to Pagosa, Snow had an initial court appearance Wednesday, Feb. 9, concerning his most recent arrest warrant and was advised of possible charges included on the warrant, said Deputy District Attorney Alex Lowe.

Snow faces six counts related to his July escape, including escape, second-degree assault on a detention officer, aggravated motor vehicle theft, false imprisonment and two counts of robbery, Lowe said.

At the Feb. 9 appearance, Snow was also alerted to the existence of a mandatory protection order that protects witnesses from being harassed. Lowe said Snow is facing charges of tampering with a witness on a previous case in which he allegedly encouraged his brother to avoid being served a subpoena.

The charges concerning the escape are set to be filed on Feb. 24, at 11 a.m., Lowe said. A preliminary hearing would then occur within 30 days.

Before the escape, Snow was in the Archuleta County jail awaiting sentencing and an August jury trial to determine habitual criminal status — a determination that would affect the length of his sentence. He was found guilty in May of first-degree assault, leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious bodily injury, and tampering with physical evidence.

Snow is scheduled for a March 15 status and review hearing on both the sentencing and the alleged tampering with a witness, Lowe said.

Snow is still awaiting the habitual criminal trial, which will likely take place after his new attorney (Snow fired his previous attorney Tuesday) is caught up to speed, Lowe said.

Security protocol at the ACCD was stepped up following the escape to allow for, among other things, fewer inmates in corridors at one time, and more guards escorting inmates. A new jail captain, Greg Futch, was also hired following the retirement of Capt. Mencor Valdez.

“Obviously, part of my research into the job was looking at the escape and the causations and so forth that were identified in the investigations,” Futch said.

In addition to creating policies that increase jailwide security, Futch said the jail is following standard protocol for someone who has either attempted or succeeded in a jail escape.

Snow is in the highest custody level, meaning any time he leaves his cell he is in full restraints — ankle chains, belly chains and handcuffs — and is escorted by a minimum of two officers to go to visitation, recreation or to a court appearance.

Futch said that, per policy, Snow is allowed out of his cell one hour per day into the day room, unless he goes to visitation or the recreation room — the same as any inmate with the classification and history of escape would be handled.

At approximately 8 p.m. July 20, Snow and Clifford Todd Reseigh, 45, locked one detention officer in the jail facility’s visitor room and assaulted two detention officers, stealing keys from them.

Snow and Reseigh then used the keys to steal a jailer’s pickup truck from behind the jail before heading south on County Road 500 (Trujillo Road), according to authorities.

At about 4 p.m. July 22, four officers from the New Mexico State Police and Jicarilla Apache Police approached a camp trailer, where they cornered the two escapees.

Snow fled the RV, while Reseigh attacked officers with a knife. Reseigh was shot and killed during the confrontation.

On July 23, Snow was found in an outhouse about a mile from where Reseigh was shot and apprehended without incident and taken to the Rio Arriba County facility.

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