Albuquerque Police Department (APD) Chief Harold Medina announced the arrest of Solomon Pena during a press conference on Monday. Pena, a former GOP candidate for New Mexico’s state House of Representatives, is charged with contracting with four men to intimidate candidates and government officials by shooting at their homes.
APD Commander Kyle Hartsock said in Monday’s press conference that Pena paid four men cash to shoot at the homes of two county commissioners and two state legislators.
Pena lost his election bid to incumbent state Rep. Michael Garcia (D).
Pena has repeatedly claimed the election “was a fraud.”
Paul Cry noted Garcia’s past criminal history in a tweet.
The Albuquerque Journal also reported Pena’s criminal history, noting he had spent seven years in prison following a 2008 conviction “of large-scale stealing from retail stores.”
Pena was reportedly personally involved in acts of intimidation before and after the election. The Daily Caller reported Pena made “unannounced visits to the homes of three allegedly targeted officials, Democratic Bernalillo County Commissioner Adriann Barboa, former County Commissioner Debbie O’Malley and Rep. Linda Lopez.”
Commander Hartsock reported that the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s department “pulled over a car” connected to one of the shootings “40 minutes” after the crime occurred and “recovered multiple firearms.”
Authorities report having evidence that Pena was involved in one of the shootings.