Probable cause fail

........................................................................................................................................................................................

Murder charges against Andrew “Smiley” Gallegos have been dismissed by the 7th Judicial District Attorney’s office, according to the Socorro County Magistrate Court clerk’s office.

Clerk Isabel Chavez said the DA’s office declared nolle prosequi on the case Friday afternoon based on the fact probable cause was not shown in court for Smiley’s brother Joe Gallegos during his Magistrate Court hearing Dec. 6. Nolle prosequi means the DA will not pursue charges against Andrew Gallegos wose preliminary hearing had been scheduled for this Friday.

Chavez said the charges against Andrew, as those against Joe, were dismissed without prejudice, meaning the DA can refile charges if more evidence against the brothers is recovered.

The Gallegos brothers were accused of murdering Adrian Burns and burning his body Nov. 12. Veguita Volunteer Fire Department firefighters found the charred body near a burning car that evening in a wooded area near Bernardo and called the Socorro County Sheriff’s Office, who in turn called New Mexico State Police to investigate the murder.

At the Magistrate Court hearing Dec. 6, Judge Jim Naranjo found the DA did not show probable cause to bind the case over to District Court for trial.

“And I’m sorry to say that,” he said after announcing his decision.