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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 14, 2014

Non-Indian Man from Chama Pleads Guilty to Assaulting Jicarilla Apache Woman

ALBUQUERQUE – Gabriel Armas, 30, pleaded guilty on March 14, 2014 to a  misdemeanor information charging him with an assault offense under a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office. 

Armas, a non-Indian man from Chama, N.M., entered his guilty plea to an information alleging that he threatened to physically harm a Jicarilla Apache woman on May 12, 2012, in a location within the Jicarilla Apache Nation.  In his plea agreement, Armas admitted assaulting the victim by placing her in fear that she was in danger of an immediate battery. 

At sentencing, Armas faces a maximum penalty of a year in prison.  Armas was released under pretrial services supervision pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.

This case was investigated by the Jicarilla Apache Tribal Police Department and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney David Adams.  It was brought pursuant to the Tribal Special Assistant U.S. Attorney (Tribal SAUSA) Pilot Project in the District of New Mexico which is sponsored by the Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women under a grant administered by the Pueblo of Laguna.  The Tribal SAUSA Pilot Project 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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Updated January 26, 2015