State files motion to keep former officer locked up

New Mexico

RIO ARRIBA COUNTY, NM (KRQE) – The state is claiming a police officer arrested for battery and assault over the weekend is too dangerous to be let out of jail.

Christopher Blea is still in the Rio Arriba County Detention Center, and prosecutors hope to keep him there because of his domestic violence history.

Now-former Cuba Police officer, Christoper Blea, is charged with the brutal beating of his wife over the weekend.

This week, the state filed a motion for a detention hearing to keep him locked up until trial, describing concerns about his access to weapons combined with his history of violence and more than 10-year history in law enforcement.

According to the motion, over the weekend Blea chased his wife down a public street in Chama and beat her. When a witness reportedly attempted to intervene, Blea lied, saying he was a State Police officer and threatened to batter the witness if he didn’t leave.

The victim told law enforcement at one point Blea even threatened her with a gun.

The state’s motion also cites Blea’s criminal history, noting four prior reports of assault and battery on a household member; one battery charge; and one report of stalking and harassment.

The Rio Arriba County Sheriff’s Office said Blea was fired from the department for that 2016 battery charge. The arrest warrant for that incident states he beat a different woman, sending her to the emergency room.

Records show the sheriff’s office reported Blea’s battery charge to the Law Enforcement Academy.

KRQE News 13 tried asking Cuba Police if it knew about his history when they hired on Blea, but were told the police chief is out of town all week.

Cuba’s mayor would not comment on the circumstances surrounding Blea’s hiring but said Blea was fired from the police department on Monday.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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