Crime Beat

New Trial To Be Scheduled for Accused Murderer Darian Bashir

Bail Reform Led to Murder of UNM Baseball Player.

Everyone has heard or read a story about a criminal in New Mexico that has been released from jail, only to commit another crime (probably while on parole/probation from an even earlier crime). It’s an all-too-common occurrence in New Mexico.

Our villain of the moment is Darian Bashir. He is currently facing an open count of Murder in the 1st Degree. On May 4, 2019, he allegedly killed UNM baseball player Jackson Weller in the Nob Hill area of Albuquerque, NM.

Bashir’s trial was set to begin this past week. The case ended in a mistrial because the attorneys could not sit the required 12 jurors. The court will now pursue a new trial date, although the timing is unknown.

This tragic event could have been avoided. Bashir was not new to crime when this murder occurred. He should have been in jail pending earlier charges.

In November 2019, he was charged with shooting another man in the stomach after fighting over a woman in Downtown Albuquerque. The case was dismissed when the prosecution did not deliver information to the defense and did not complete interviews on time.

In February 2019, Bashir was charged with shooting from a moving vehicle. While it seems the intention was to shoot another car, the bullets flew in the direction of nearby Albuquerque Police Officers. That case was pending when our favorite former Judge Richard Brown released Bashir on his own recognizance.

If Bashir had been in jail while waiting for his trial, he would not have been free to murder Jackson Weller. The criminal Rap Sheet is long.

Bashir Rap Sheet, via New Mexico Courts

2015: Criminal Damage to Property; Driving With Less Than Two Headlamps; No Driver’s License; Criminal Trespass; Resisting, Evading or Obstructing an Officer; Disorderly Conduct; No Proof of Insurance; Traffic-Control Signal Legend/Failure to Obey Signal 

2019: Aggravated Assault (Deadly Weapon); Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Assault (Deadly Weapon); Shooting At or From a Motor Vehicle (No Great Bodily Harm); Tampering with Evidence; Aggravated Assault (Deadly Weapon); Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor; Possession of Marijuana or Synthetic Cannabinoids (8 oz. or More); Negligent Use of a Deadly Weapon (Near Dwelling or Building); Distribution/Possess w/ Intent to Distribute Marijuana/Synthetic Cannabinoids (1st Offense); Open Count of Murder in the First Degree 

Bail Reform was a legislatively referred constitutional amendment put on the November 08, 2016 ballot that received overwhelming public support, 87.23% of voters.

According to the New Mexico courts website, the vote gave judges new authority to deny release to proven dangerous defendants – no matter how much they can pay for a bail bond – and ensuring that defendants who are neither a danger nor a flight risk may not be kept in jail before trial only because they cannot afford to buy a money bond.

Determining that a known criminal is not a danger to the public must be a very difficult job. Bashir had already been charged with shooting someone in the past. He was being charged with shooting from a motor vehicle in the direction of police officers. The warrant stated that police found videos of Bashir with associates, waving guns around and flashing gang signs.

Put the entire picture together.

It was only a matter of time before he committed another crime. Pretrial release has been dangerous for New Mexico. Darian Bashir is a criminal and should have never been out of jail. Perhaps young Mr. Weller would still be here if Bashir had been in jail, where he should have been. 

This is an ongoing story.

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