ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The District Attorney has promised to keep prosecuting Albuquerque’s backlog of rape cases no matter how many years they stretch into the past and now they are taking on a more than 30-year-old case. In a rare decision, they’re still prosecuting it even though the victim is no longer alive.

As the DA’s office works through hundreds of old sexual assault kits, the latest case they’re taking to court won’t have a victim who will see justice firsthand. The DA’s office said the victim in their latest case from over thirty years ago is no longer alive. Instead it’s her family seeking justice and the major reason the department has decided to move forward with charges against now 58-year-old Freddy Valenzuela.

The case dates back to October of 1992 at the corner of Broadway and Gibson in Southeast Albuquerque. According to an arrest warrant, while walking out of a 7/11 that is now a DK gas station, a 10-year-old girl was taken a knife point and raped. Police say the girl was eventually able to escape her attacker and run back to her family who called police.

A rape kit was taken after the initial police report in 1992 but it wasn’t until 2021 that investigators got a DNA match leading them to Freddy Valenzuela.

Records show he has a long history of run-ins with the law. Valenzuela was arrested this past Friday. A judge is expected to decide Wednesday if Valenzuela should be kept behind bars while awaiting trial.