News and Press Releases

Santa Clara Pueblo Man Pleads Guilty
to Assaulting Intimate Partner

Defendant Prosecuted as Part of Federal Initiative to
Address the Epidemic Incidence of Violence Against Native Women

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 30, 2013

ALBUQUERQUE – James Allen Moquino, 31, a member of Santa Clara Pueblo, N.M., pleaded guilty this morning to a federal assault charge, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Steven C. Yarbrough and DuWayne W. Honahni, Sr., Special Agent in Charge of District IV of BIA’s Office of Justice Services.

Moquino was arrested on July 5, 2013 based on an indictment charging him with assaulting a woman and causing her serious bodily injury.  According to the indictment, Moquino committed the crime on Nov. 21, 2010, in Indian Country within Rio Arriba County. 

During this morning’s proceedings, Moquino entered a guilty plea to the indictment and admitted that he assaulted his intimate partner and the mother of his child by repeatedly striking her in the head and face causing her to suffer serious bodily injury.  Moquino further admitted that the assault occurred within Santa Clara Pueblo. 

Moquino has been in federal custody since his arrest and remains detained pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.  At sentencing, Moquino faces a maximum penalty of ten years in prison.

This case was investigated by the Northern Pueblos Agency of the BIA’s Office of Justice Services and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney David M. Adams.

The case was brought pursuant to the Tribal Special Assistant U.S. Attorney (Tribal SAUSA) Pilot Project which is sponsored by the Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women, and seeks to train tribal prosecutors in federal law, procedure and investigative techniques to increase the likelihood that every viable violent offense against Native women is prosecuted in either federal court or tribal court, or both.  The Tribal SAUSA Pilot Project was largely driven by input gathered from annual tribal consultations on violence against women, and is another step in the Justice Department's on-going efforts to increase engagement, coordination and action on public safety in tribal communities.

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