A repeat DWI offender got a break after he accepted a plea deal that would keep him out of jail. Now, weeks after the deal, prosecutors say he already broke it and now has a warrant out for his arrest.
“It’s extremely frustrating. You see these guys that are repeat offenders,” said Deputy District Attorney Joshua Boone.
Last summer, Malcolm Torres was caught on camera driving drunk near Presbyterian Hospital in downtown. A Good Samaritan ended up pulling Torres out of the car.
Torres was charged with aggravated DWI. That should’ve been his third DWI conviction.
“He had a pending DWI case in Sandoval County. We learned he had a prior conviction out of Los Alamos,” said Boone.
KRQE News 13 has learned the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office gave him a deal and charged him as a first offense. The DA’s Office says there’s a reason for that.
“Because the Sandoval Case was still pending, we weren’t able to use that as a prior conviction,” said Boone.
They couldn’t get the paperwork in time for the Los Alamos case. Boone says they were running out of time.
“We felt it was better for our perspective to get the conviction on the DWI itself and have that over him,” said Boone.
The DA struck a deal with Torres and gave him unsupervised probation since he was pleading guilty to his DWI case in Sandoval County.
“The max amount of time we had on our case was 90 days. Even if the judge imposed the entire 90-day sentence, that still would’ve been less time than what he was facing in Sandoval,” said Boone.
Now, a warrant has been issued for Torres’ arrest for failing to follow the plea agreement.
“The frustration comes in not being able to do what we want to do, but our office’s policy says we’re not going to be using that as any sort of excuse. It just means we have to work harder,” said Boone.
The DA’s Office says if Torres gets another DWI, they will be charging him as a four-time offender.
Torres also got a deal from Sandoval County. He was supposed to spend four days in jail, but court records show he only did two days.
He also has a warrant for the Sandoval County case for failure to follow court orders.