Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Former N.M. sheriff’s deputy pleads guilty to sexually assaulting woman he arrested

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun11,2024

DOÑA ANA COUNTY, N.M. (TCD) — A 34-year-old former sheriff’s deputy recently pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a female arrestee in his patrol vehicle in 2023 and then trying to destroy footage of the incident.

The U.S. Department of Justice announced Tuesday, April 23, that Michael Martinez pleaded guilty to violating the civil rights of a female arrestee by sexually assaulting her and to obstructing justice after trying to destroy recorded footage of the assault. Martinez faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and up to three years of supervised release. He’ll be sentenced at a later date.

According to the Department of Justice, on April 30, 2023, Martinez, who was a deputy for the Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Office at the time, responded to a vehicle accident and arrested a woman for allegedly driving while intoxicated and reckless driving. Martinez brought the woman to a medical center for clearance. Afterward, prosecutors said he handcuffed the victim, led her to his patrol car, and then sexually assaulted her before bringing her to the Doña Ana Detention Center.

According to the Department of Justice, Martinez tried to destroy his patrol car’s WatchGuard DVR system shortly after to conceal his crimes. The system reportedly contained the car’s internal video camera, which showed the assault.

Records show Martinez was initially arrested on Sept. 20, 2023, and charged with deprivation of rights under color of law and obstruction of justice. If he went to trial and was convicted, he could have faced up to life in prison.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division said, “Police sexual violence targeting women in their custody are heinous crimes that have no place in our society.”

U.S. Attorney Alexander M. M. Uballez for the District of New Mexico added, “Being accused of a crime does not deprive you of the basic human right to dignity and respect. If you abuse your position of authority and betray the oath you swore to the public by sexually assaulting those in your charge, your badge will not shield you from justice.”

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Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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2 thoughts on “Former N.M. sheriff’s deputy pleads guilty to sexually assaulting woman he arrested”
  1. It’s utterly disturbing to hear about such a breach of trust by someone in a position of authority. Actions like these not only harm the victim but erode the faith people have in law enforcement. Justice must be served swiftly and decisively in cases like this to ensure accountability and prevent such abhorrent acts from happening again.

  2. What a despicable act of abuse of power and betrayal of trust. It’s horrifying to think that those sworn to protect and serve would commit such heinous crimes. Justice must be served to the fullest extent of the law to ensure accountability and prevent such atrocities from happening again.

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