AP NEWS

Santa Fe police: Missing 12-year-old is suspect in armed robbery

November 20, 2018

Although it’s not unusual for law enforcement to post images of missing children or teens on its social media pages, it is far less common to see officials offer a juvenile’s criminal record and background, let alone photo.

But Marcus Isaiah Atencio, a 12-year-old suspect in a recent armed robbery in Santa Fe, apparently is different.

The Santa Fe Police Department posted a notice of the boy’s disappearance on its Facebook page Saturday, alerting the public that authorities consider him dangerous. Though he’s not yet a teenager, Atencio faces charges of armed robbery, assault on a household member, and cocaine possession and trafficking, according to the police department’s Facebook page.

Santa Fe police Deputy Chief Ben Valdez said Atencio’s situation made the department’s social media alert because “of what the suspect is involved in. We want the public to be aware of what he has been involved with so that if they do see him, they don’t try to apprehend him. We don’t want anyone injured, including Marcus.”

Atencio was last seen at his home on the 2600 block of Walnut Street. The search began Saturday afternoon, shortly after Atencio’s parents called police to say they found some narcotics in their home.

When police arrived, they discovered Marcus had left the premises, possibly through a bathroom window, leaving behind a note that said “See ya’,” along with some expletives, Valdez said.

Atencio has been identified as a suspect in a Nov. 13 robbery of the Tractor Supply Company on Oliver Drive in Santa Fe “where he was armed with a handgun,” according to the online police bulletin.

Valdez said police do not know if Atencio is still armed, but he said the situation is troubling.

“He’s 12 years old, although he’s very big for 12 and doesn’t look like a 12-year-old,” Valdez said of the 5-foot-7, 140-pound Atencio. “He’s pretty big, he looks pretty mature.”

A number of people who commented on the police department’s Facebook post about Atencio agreed.

“Only 12? How sad,” one wrote.

Valdez said others posters wrote Atencio “is a good kid who’s going through a bad time right now. We’re hoping we can help get him back on track.”

As of Sunday evening, police had not yet found Atencio.

“He’s a runaway, and his parents are worried,” Valdez said. “We want Marcus to come in.”

AP RADIO
Update hourly