The Southern Ute Police Department has welcomed Lieutenant Juan Jose Martinez to the fold. He was brought on board thanks to his services and years of experience in the police force. He was joined by fellow police comrades inside the Southern Ute Tribal Courthouse on Thursday, Jan. 15 where he was officially sworn in by Judge Chantel Cloud.
Martinez grew up in Tierra Amarilla, NM where he then graduated high school from Escalante. He attended the University of New Mexico for a year before returning home, where he spent three years working at the Rio Arriba Detention Center. From there he entered the New Mexico State Police Academy in June 1995 and graduated in May the following year.
Martinez stated that his inspiration in law enforcement came forth during his high school years.
“My Kindergarten teacher’s husband was a state police officer,” he said. “When I was in high school, I did a ride-along with a state police officer who was stationed in Tierra Amarilla.”
Martinez has had a long history in law enforcement, branching out in various locations in the southwest. He spent five years as a patrolman in Las Vegas, NM with an additional eleven months added in Albuquerque.
Eventually he migrated to Santa Fe where he saw himself in the position as a patrol sergeant, public information officer, and Captain of the Investigations Bureau. Additionally, he has experience in the narcotics and drug task force.
Martinez commented that he came to the Southern Ute Indian Tribe to further his experience and mentorship in law enforcement.
“I have the opportunity to continue my law enforcement career and hopefully utilize my training and experiences to mentor the officers and sergeants of the Southern Ute Police Department,” he said. “I hope to continue to build on the foundation established by the officers and supervisors of the department in bringing professional police services to the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.”