Albuquerque, NM – The individual suspected of a hit and run,
killing a seven-year-old boy in December has been arrested by the United
States Marshal Service and the Albuquerque Police Department. Sergio
Almanza surrendered to/was arrested by the United States Marshals
Service-Southwest Investigative Task Force (USMS-SWIFT) on January 31,
2022. Almanza is suspected in the fatal hit-and-run that killed
seven-year-old Pronoy Bhattacharya.
On December 12, 2021, Bhattacharya was with his
family as they walked in the crosswalk at Central Ave. and Tingley Dr
S.W., after attending the River of Lights show, at the Albuquerque
Albuquerque Police Department Investigators determined
Almanza was driving an illegal off-road vehicle along Central Avenue as
he sped through a red light and struck Bhattacharya and his father. The
driver fled the scene going westbound on Central.
The investigation was initiated by the
Albuquerque Police Department and an arrest warrant was issued for
Almanza’S arrest. The fugitive apprehension case was recently turned
over to the United States Marshals Service. Crime Stoppers also played a
pivotal role, by generating tips from the public that enabled
investigators to identify Almanza as the suspect.
Shortly after the incident, investigators served
a warrant at Almanza’s home in Belen and determined he had fled. He was
considered a fugitive until he turned himself in. This arrest is the
result of joint efforts involving the USMS-SWIFT, including the
Albuquerque Police Department, Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, the
New Mexico State Police, New Mexico Department of Corrections-Probation
& Parole (STIU), and the United States Marshals Service.
“This arrest is the result of a lot of teamwork –
within APD, and with our partners at the U.S. Marshals Service, the
District Attorney’s Office,” APD Chief Harold Medina said. “I promised
Pronoy’s parents we would do everything possible to bring this suspect
to justice.” “Taking this defendant into custody is a testament to great
teamwork with all our partners and our hope is that it will give the
victim’s family a sense of peace, “said Sonya K. Chavez, U.S. Marshal
for the District of New Mexico. “Sadly, nothing will ever bring their
son back, but our hope is that they will find some comfort,” she added.
The United States Marshals Service, as the first
Federal Law Enforcement Agency in the United States (1789) continues to
serve our Nation in unseen, but critical missions to include protecting
the Federal Judicial process, managing seized assets (acquired by
criminals, thru illegal means), housing and transporting federal
prisoners and enforcement operations. By combining the resources of
multiple agencies, the identification, investigation and apprehension of
fugitives wanted for egregious crimes against the community, is
accomplished while ensuring the application of equal Justice, Integrity,
and Service for all.
Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found
First Federal Law Enforcement Agency