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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Arizona Woman Pleads Guilty to Federal Assault Charge in New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Maraintoinette Lynn Yazzie, 26, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Lukachukai, Ariz., pleaded guilty this morning to an assault with a dangerous weapon charge under a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Yazzie, 26, and her brother Antonio Yazzie, 22, also of Lukachukai, Ariz., were arrested in April 2014, on a criminal complaint alleging that they attacked a Navajo man at his home in Tohlakai, N.M., on Feb. 26, 2014.  The two subsequently were indicted in May 2014, and charged with one count of assault with a dangerous weapon and two counts of robbery.  According to court filings, Yazzie and her brother assaulted the victim by restraining him and striking him repeatedly in the face and head with a rock and a coffee mug.  The two then allegedly robbed the victim of cash and his truck.

During today’s plea hearing, Yazzie pled guilty to Count 1 of the indictment, charging her with assault with a dangerous weapon.  Yazzie admitted that she and her brother struck the victim in the head and the face with a rock and a coffee mug with the intent to do bodily harm. 

Antonio Yazzie previously entered a guilty plea to Count 1 of the indictment on Sept. 9, 2014.  Both siblings have been in federal custody since their arrests and remain detained pending their sentencing hearings, which have yet to be scheduled.  At sentencing, each faces a statutory maximum penalty of ten years in prison.

This case was investigated by the Crownpoint office of the Navajo Nation Division of Public Safety and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul H. Spiers.

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Updated January 26, 2015