He was identified as 42-year-old Tobias Gutierrez and booked into jail overnight on charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, police in New Mexico’s largest city said in a statement Monday.
The stabbings appeared to have been committed at random and most happened along Central Avenue, one of the city’s main thoroughfares, said police spokesman Gilbert Gallegos.
One of the crime scenes included a homeless encampment and another was near a smoke shop where the suspect asked a victim for money and yelled obscenities before he started swinging a knife, according to a criminal complaint.
Gallegos said the stabbings appeared to be random.
“There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason” to the attacks, he said.
There was no immediate information on whether Gutierrez had a lawyer who could speak on his behalf.
New Mexico court records show Gutierrez had been charged over the years with burglary, drug possession, and driving while intoxicated.
In 2014, he failed to appear in court for driving on a revoked license, records show. He responded to the court with a handwritten note saying that he was in federal custody in another county and that he was making an effort to better himself while incarcerated.
The first stabbing report came in Sunday at about 11:15 a.m. Officers responded to a scene downtown and found a man suffering a laceration to his hand.
Then a few miles east, outside the smoke shop near the University of New Mexico, police received a call about a person who was stabbed in the arm by a man on a bike armed with a large knife.
Another stabbing happened in front of an apartment building, and a man was also stabbed nearby in the neck in another incident, police said.
Police said another call involved a suspect trying to stab customers at a convenience store. Officers arrived and found two victims with neck wounds. Additional calls came in about two more stabbings.
The victims were taken to different hospitals and while two suffered critical injuries, all of those hospitalized were in stable condition, police said. Some were treated for their injuries and released.
By Susan Montoya Bryan