Former NM GOP candidate slashed opponent's tires, police say

By Chris Ramirez, NBC News | Posted - Dec. 31, 2012 at 3:43 p.m.

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

ALBUQUERQUE — A former Republican candidate for New Mexico's First Congressional District is in jail accused of slashing his rival's tires at her home.

Janice Arnold-Jones, who was the 2012 Republican nominee for New Mexico's First Congressional District, turned over home surveillance video to the Albuquerque Police Department showing an older man slashing her tire with an ice pick on Dec. 20.

Arnold Jones suspected the man in the video was Gary Smith. In April 2012, Arnold-Jones's campaign sued Smith alleging he did not have enough petition signatures to get on the Republican Primary Election ballot. A judge agreed and the legal move paved the way for Arnold-Jones to run unopposed during the primary election. Arnold-Jones said she suspected Smith slashed her tires in revenge.

Albuquerque police Detective Lorenzo Garcia said he was able to verify the man in the video was Smith.

"I looked at Gary Smith's MVD photo and compared it with the video and it showed it did appear to be him," Garcia said.

Police said they believe Smith may also be responsible for slashing the tires of other Republicans who participated in the lawsuit against Smith.

Smith denies slashing the tires and says he is not the person seen in the video.

Chris Ramirez
    NBC News

      KSL Weather Forecast