‘Wobbly tire bandit’ to be held in jail until trial
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Albuquerque police believe Abie Chavez is the “wobbly tire bandit” who used two little girls to pull off a scam.
According to the allegations, the little girls grabbed purses while Chavez distracted drivers.
“Somebody tapped my window and they told me I had a flat tire,” a victim said. “I didn’t pay attention to him, and he said, ‘You have a flat tire, I’ll fix it for you.'”
Prosecutors say the women Chavez targeted trusted him, because he was accompanied by two young children. But instead, he would quickly go to charge items to the recently stolen credit cards.
“All of this is a danger to the community,” said Calvin Wells, prosecutor.
However, many of Chavez’s previous arrests ended with cases getting dismissed.
“The defendant’s criminal history is one of alleged property crimes, there are no weapons, there’s no violence, there’s no threats,” said Sarah Pepin, his defense attorney.
Judge Courtney Weaks noted that Chavez has a half dozen felony arrests since 2021. It also did not help his case that he is currently out on probation for a very similar crime in Valencia County.
“It shows a lot of calculation on Mr. Chavez’s part and it does pose a danger to the community because these types of interactions, similar to a residential burglary can escalate – um – into violence,” Judge Weaks said.
Chavez is getting held in jail on this charge, and he is also getting held on his Valencia County charge.