ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – On Tuesday, a jury found 41-year-old Anthony Cruz guilty of criminal sexual penetration and false imprisonment. According to a district attorney’s press release, Cruz could serve up to 12 and a half years in prison.
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According to a criminal complaint, Cruz approached the victim and her boyfriend, who were panhandling on the 2700 block of Carlisle, back in May of 2020. He offered to buy the two a motel room for the night as well as give them grocery money. The victim and her boyfriend agreed and got into Cruz’s vehicle.
Cruz rented the couple a room at the Suburban Extended Stay Motel off of Menaul NE. The victim stayed at the motel and took a bath while her boyfriend and Cruz went to Walmart to buy groceries. Cruz dropped off the boyfriend at the store and went back to the motel, where he sexually assaulted the victim.
The complaint states Cruz and the victim drove back to Walmart after the incident and reconnected with the boyfriend on the way. The victim told her boyfriend she had been assaulted by Cruz and she called 911 while the boyfriend got Cruz’s license plate information.
That’s when the complaint says Cruz fled the scene and the victim and her boyfriend returned to the motel. The press release states Cruz returned to the motel shortly after that with money to try and buy the victim off. Cruz was later contacted by police and arrested without incident.