Showing there's a romantic side to the law, New Mexico police allowed a parolee fleeing the country with his fiancé to get married at a roadside gas station before taking him to jail, KRQE News reports.
Caleb Rogers, 28, was scheduled to appear Wednesday at the state probation office in Albuquerque for a routine compliance check following his release on parole. But Rogers fled when correction officers told him to take a drug test, the station reports.
Officers immediately issued an arrest warrant for Rogers, who has a history of criminal charges including first-degree kidnapping, third-degree aggravated battery, and third-degree attempted sexual penetration, according to New Mexico University's Daily Lobo.
But when police caught up with him at a local gas station, they discovered he had more than one reason for running from the law: he was worried he wouldn't be able to get married.
Under New Mexico law, parolees are only allowed to marry with the consent of probation and parole officers, which means Rogers would have to cross into Mexico to tie the knot with his fiance, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
Luckily for Rogers, officers had sympathy for his situation and arranged for a simple wedding right there at the gas station, calling a Justice of the Peace to the pit stop so the pair could get hitched.
"He was standing there in handcuffs. They were all standing around and I thought, 'What's going on? This is very bizarre,' because they're just standing around talking," gas station cashier Ellen Coffman told KOAT News.
Albuquerque Police Department Officer Mark Aragon said officers took all precaution to make sure the ceremony was safe for authorities and gas station patrons.
"Obviously they had the compassion to go ahead and allow the ceremony, but we were also safe about it. He was under arrest and handcuffed," Aragon told the station. "I guess you could call it a love story."
Rogers is currently being held without bond in the Metropolitan Detention Center, according to a press release obtained by the Albuquerque Journal.
For more on this story, watch the video report from KRQE above.