SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The New Mexico Supreme Court agreed with a lower court’s ruling that habitual offenders who accept a plea deal can have their sentences extended if they violate parole. Christina Banghart-Portillo pled guilty to two charges stemming from a 2014 arrest.
Story continues below:
- Community: What’s happening around New Mexico September 22 – September 28
- Education: APS explains decision behind no snow days policy
- Crime: Two suspects arrested in 11-year-old’s fatal shooting outside Isotopes Park
- New Mexico: New Mexico Public Regulation Commission approves $115 in credits to PNM customers
During sentencing, she admitted to two prior felony convictions. The judge sentenced her to two years behind bars and three years probation. The judge also informed her that violating the parole agreement could result in an extension of her sentence under the state’s Habitual Offender program.
She was released in 2016. Eighteen months later, she was picked up for multiple probation violations.
A district court judge revoked her probation and sentenced her to six years. Banghart-Portillo challenged the decision, stating she was being sentenced for a crime she already served time for.
The state Supreme Court affirmed the original judge’s ruling. They added that going forward, habitual offenders must be informed during a plea agreement that they could face additional time – which they said the judge in Banghart-Portillo’s case did.