TPD issues release on an early-morning warrant arrest in Daley Estates

Jon Johnson File Photo/Gila Herald: The Thatcher Police Department (with assistance from officers from the Safford Police Department and deputies from the Graham County Sheriff’s Office) located a wanted man barricaded in a travel trailer early Saturday morning – resulting in an hours-long standoff.

Subject had been barricaded in Daley Estates

Contributed Article/Courtesy Shaffen Woods Chief of Police Thatcher Police Department

THATCHER – Early this morning around 2 a.m., Thatcher Police Department officers located a male subject by the name of Robert Merino, AKA Bobby Merino (35 Years old) inside a travel trailer behind a residence on Woods Avene. Merino was wanted on felony warrants.

Officers obtained a warrant to enter the property to take him into custody. Officers from the Safford Police Department and deputies from the Graham County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene to assist. Due to the information we had obtained, a decision was made to use Safford PD’s MRAP (Armored vehicle) to provide cover for officers. The MRAP was then deployed to the scene as well.

Just after 6:30 this morning, officers and deputies attempted to get Merino to surrender with no success using a loudspeaker. After several attempts to get Merino to comply, officers breached the travel trailer which was found to be barricaded.

Merino was found hiding inside the trailer and taken into custody without further incident. Merino appeared to be under the influence of an unknown substance at the time of his arrest. He was taken to the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center for evaluation.

Officers obtained a second warrant to search the trailer for illegal items based on plain-view observations inside the trailer. During this search officers located several firearms and ammunition as well as controlled substances and drug paraphernalia inside the trailer.

Merino will be booked into jail on his felony warrants as well as drug and weapon charges upon his release from the hospital.

I want to thank the Safford Police Department and the Graham County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance in this matter. We also appreciate the patience and cooperation of residents in the area who helped us keep this situation safe for everyone.

Shaffen D. Woods/Chief of Police