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Press Release

Malcolm Torres Sentenced to 35 Years in Prison for the Death of His Stepdaughter

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office, announced today that, per the terms of his plea agreement, Malcom Torres was sentenced to 35 years in prison. Torres, 30, of Española, New Mexico, pled guilty to second degree murder on April 10, 2023.

According to court records, on Sept. 7, 2019, Torres was home with his five-year-old stepdaughter, Renezmae Calzada, and eighteen-month-old son. Torres had been drinking excessive amounts of alcohol that day and during the preceding week and was not fit to supervise the children. On the afternoon of Sept. 8, 2019, Renezmae’s grandparents returned home and were informed by Torres that Renezmae had been missing since that morning. Renezmae’s grandmother immediately alerted Renezmaes mother, who contacted law enforcement. Over the next three days, Torres refused to assist in and impeded first-responding officers’ efforts to locate his stepdaughter by providing false and misleading information to police and campaigning against the truthful efforts others made to assist police. Torres’ deceitful efforts lengthen the wide-spread and vigorous efforts of law enforcement and the Santa Clara Pueblo community to locate Renezmae

On Sept. 11, 2019, law enforcement located Renezmae’s body in the Rio Grande River on the Santa Clara Pueblo. It was determined that Renezmae died from blunt-force trauma to her head, torso, and extremities on Sept. 7 and that Torres had driven to the area 5.5 miles from his home and left Renezmae’s body there on Sept. 8. After he was arrested, Torres insisted that Renezmae had sustained the injuries when she fell out of her bed or that a house guest killed Renezmae and that person was still at large. Torres refused to take responsibility for what happened to Renezmae for almost four years.

“Renezmae’s legacy is bringing together community, fighting for life, and protecting our children,” said United States Attorney Alexander Uballez. “Today we received a first apology, a final justice, and an opportunity to more forward together. All children are all of our children. When someone brings harm to one, we will respond together to deliver certain justice.”

“Four years ago, a precious young life was taken in an act of senseless violence by the person who was supposed to protect five-year-old Renezmae, leaving a community in anguish,” said Special Agent in Charge Raul Bujanda. “Although the defendant tried to cover his tracks and lead investigators astray, the unified efforts of federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement officials resulted in justice being served. Today’s sentencing reaffirms the commitment of the FBI and partner agencies to seek justice for victims of violent crime on Native American tribal lands.”

Torres’ sentencing guidelines were calculated at 360-365 months, however Torres agreed to the sentence of 420 months in exchange for the United States agreeing to forgo a charge of first-degree felony murder, which carried a potential penalty of life imprisonment or death. Upon his release from prison, Torres will be subject to five years of supervised release.

The Santa Fe Resident Agency of the FBI investigated this case with assistance from the Pueblo of Santa Clara, Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s Office, New Mexico State Police, Espanola Police Department, U.S. Marshals Service, Pueblo of Pojoaque Police Department, Pueblo of Ohkay Owingeh Police Department, Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, Albuquerque Police Department, New Mexico Game & Fish, and the Bureau of Land Management. Assistant United States Attorneys Jack Burkhead, Brittany DuChaussee and Zachary Jones are prosecuting the case.

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Updated October 30, 2023

Press Release Number: 23-254