ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A 56-year-old northern New Mexico rancher faces a year and a half in prison after being sentenced for a carjacking conviction stemming from an armed confrontation with utility company workers on his property.

Richard Howieson of Costilla in Taos County was sentenced Thursday after pleading guilty April 17 in the Feb. 19, 2013 incident.

Howieson acknowledged in a plea agreement that he brandished a loaded pistol after confronting the two utility workers who said they had permission to cut a lock and go onto his property to install fiber optic cable.

He also acknowledged he didn’t let the workers take their truck when he ordered them off his property and that he fired his pistol in another direction as they walked away.

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