The Taos Police Department confirmed early Friday morning (Oct. 26) that working with the U.S. Marshals Office they have arrested a Santa Fe man in connection with the Aug. 8 arson and possible murder of a homeless man.
Taos Police Chief Kenneth Koch said authorities arrested 23-year-old William Patrick Smith aka "Train-Hopper Red" in Santa Fe late Thursday night.
"The investigation is still ongoing with further witnesses to be identified and located," Koch said.
Authorities arrested 28-year-old Debra "Raven" Jaramillo in southern Colorado Monday evening. Both are being held for an alleged connection to the Aug. 8 fire that destroyed the old convent building on La Posta Road, which investigators believe was set to cover up the murder of 39-year-old Christian Payton, whose body was recovered from the building Aug. 23.
Koch said that due to the sensitivity of the investigation, details on Jaramillo and Smith's charges have been temporarily sealed.
Eighth Judicial District Attorney Donald Gallegos said Thursday that he obtained a court order to seal the case records prior to the arrests until the investigation is complete and to avoid other possible suspects from fleeing.
Under New Mexico State Court Rules, case records can be sealed from public access if a judge agrees that certain requirements are met, including "the existence of an overriding interest that overcomes the right of public access to the court record."
The Taos Police Department is still asking the public for any information in connection with the arson or homicide. Anonymous tips can be directed to Taos Police Department at 758-2216 or Taos County Crime Stoppers at 758-HALT.