By Tim Binnall
Authorities in New Mexico have arrested a treasure hunter from Nevada for allegedly stalking author Forrest Fenn. Francisco Chavez was reportedly taken into custody yesterday after he visited Fenn's home over the weekend in the hopes of speaking to the man who famously claims to have hidden a massive cache of riches somewhere in the American southwest. Since it was first announced in 2010, the so-called 'Fenn Treasure Hunt' has led to the death of at least four people and given rise to a number of odd events.
The incident over the weekend saw Chavez drive a whopping nine hours from his home in Henderson, Nevada to Fenn's property in an attempt to meet the man behind the treasure. What made the unexpected visit particularly troubling is that Chavez was already convicted of stalking the author last year and was sentenced to three years probation. As such, when he buzzed the home via an intercom at the front gate and announced his arrival, Fenn responded by quickly grabbing a gun and venturing down to confront him! Fortunately for both men, Chavez had apparently fled the scene before Fenn arrived.
Lest one suspect that perhaps Fenn was overreacting to what appears to simply be an overzealous treasure hunter, a deputy chief of police in Santa Fe revealed that the man's interest in the hidden riches appears to have gone in a rather unnerving direction. Ben Valdez explained that Chavez "seems to be drawn to the belief that the treasure is Mr. Fenn's granddaughter, and he's been stalking her for quite some time." In fact, the man's behavior is so worrisome to authorities that Valdez observed that it is "very concerning for us anytime Mr. Chavez comes to Santa Fe" with plans to find Fenn and his family.
Incredibly, Chavez's arrest this week marks the second time in the last year alone that someone has been busted for an unauthorized visit to Fenn's home. Back in October, a Pennsylvania man was taken into custody after he broke into a guest house on the property because he was convinced that the treasure could be found there. That unfortunate individual recovered only a chest full of towels and linens. While one might think that these unsettling events would cause Fenn to consider ending the treasure hunt, such a scenario seems unlikely since the author has already rebuffed a request from authorities to do just that after a man died looking for the riches back in 2017.