ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – She could have caused serious damage and injured people. A woman accused of throwing rocks at cars, who it turns out is no stranger to the law, tried to wriggle out of the charges.
She tried to ignore officers as they tracked her down. Marissa Martinez was finally located at First and Central, after reports she’d been chucking rocks at cars.
Witness: “It could have killed my husband. She threw that big rock. Look at our car.”
At least four victims were waiting to report what happened to the officers.
Officer: “She hit your car too?”
Witness: “Yeah, she hit my car too.”
It happened in late July. Police said the 42-year-old was walking in the middle of Central while throwing the large rocks at cars, but Martinez would not admit to the crimes.
Officer: “Somebody said you were throwing rocks.”
Martinez: “It was the other girl. She went that way.”
Martinez has been in and out of jail since 1998, mostly for alcohol-related crimes, trespassing and damaging property. Her behavior in this latest incident concerned some of the victims.
Witness: “She needs Jesus.”
Officer: “She does, she needs help.”
The city, county and law enforcement say they’re actively working to help people like Martinez who cycle through the system, using the LEAD program for people with mental health problems or substance abuse issues who commit low-level crimes. Instead of pursuing criminal charges, they get help instead.
The county’s Behavioral Health Department says so far, the Albuquerque Police Department has six officers who can help determine which suspects are good candidates for the LEAD program. They have not yet said if Martinez is a candidate for treatment instead of jail.