ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) –The man accused of running over his girlfriend and killing her last year is now charged with trying to bribe a witness in the case while behind bars. The Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office says Robert Mentz recently tried to keep the victim’s dad from showing up to court.
It was last September that Albuquerque police said Mentz got into an argument with the victim, Brandi Garcia. They say Garcia was standing near Mentz’s vehicle when he grabbed her by the hair and drove off.
Police say Garcia’s father was nearby and tried to intervene. Mentz reportedly told police he hit the brakes and Garcia wasn’t in the car anymore. Garcia later died.
A criminal complaint says last month, Mentz asked another inmate at MDC if he could help him get rid of witnesses on this active case, specifically naming Garcia’s father. The complaint states he wanted this inmate to “just scare them” not to show up to court and supposedly had money to pay the inmate. Mentz is charged with criminal solicitation to commit bribery or intimidation of a witness.
At Mentz’s arraignment Friday, he pleaded not guilty to the new charges. Mentz is currently being held in a granted pretrial detention motion on the homicide by vehicle charge. His trial for the homicide by vehicle case starts in late October.