Coffee helps end early morning standoff

PNT Staff

A cup of coffee helped end a two-hour standoff, and an arrest was made early Tuesday morning on drug and weapons charges, according to the Portales Police Department.
Dorenda Teston, 41, of Portales, faces charges of possession of methamphetamine and negligent use of a deadly weapon following an incident in which she barricaded herself in a vehicle with guns, according to an arrest affidavit filed Wednesday morning.
Police responded to the 1000 block of West 15th Street just after midnight on reports of a broken window, according to the affidavit. The person who called the police, Portales Police Capt. Lonnie Berry said, was in the house where Teston had been living.
Police found Teston barricaded in the back of a white van with a gun, according to the report. Berry said he and Sgt. Fred Smith tried for the next few hours to talk Teston out of the vehicle, and she refused each request.
Berry said officers ultimately found the van contained at least four rifles and a BB gun.
“We were concerned about her safety and obviously the people around her,” Berry said. “We were trying to get her to come out, first of her own (free will). If we had to take her out, we wanted to do so in a way that would cause a minimal amount of injury.”
Berry said he and Smith discussed the possible use of mace and tasers, among other ideas, but police got the opportunity they needed by offering Teston some coffee about two hours after the first response.
“I just stepped into the van and kept (the coffee) really close and made her reach towards me,” Berry said. “As she reached towards me, I dropped the coffee and got a good hold of her hands.”
According to the affidavit, Berry gained access through the side door of the van, where he pulled Teston out of the vehicle about 2:15 a.m.
While doing an inventory of a duffle bag Teston had left on the street, officers found a substance that later tested positive for methamphetamine, according to the affidavit.
On Tuesday, Teston was in the Roosevelt County Detention Center on a $5,000 bond.
Attempts to contact Teston’s family members or the person who called in the incident were unsuccessful Tuesday night.