A state district judge dismissed all charges against a mother and her boyfriend accused of raping her child after the young accuser denied during court testimony Tuesday in Tierra Amarilla that any sexual abuse had occurred.
The woman — who The New Mexican is not naming to protect the identity of her children — and Ezekiel Maestas, both 32, were charged with one count of criminal sexual penetration of a minor under 13. Maestas faced a drug charge after police accused him of possessing heroin.
According to arrest warrant affidavits, police accused the woman of holding down her then-8-year-old son while Maestas raped the boy.
Both the boy and his younger brother told workers with the state Children, Youth and Families Department in 2018 they had been molested by Maestas. Court documents said both boys had injuries consistent with sexual assault.
First Judicial District Attorney's Office spokesman Henry Varela said in an email the charges cannot be refiled.
“The child victim testified and denied sexual abuse and did not disclose any sexual abuse to the jury,” Varela said. “As a result, the judge issued a directed verdict and the defendants were acquitted of all charges.”
In an interview, the woman’s father said to “stay tuned,” regarding litigation against CYFD.
The boys’ father could not be reached for comment.
A 2018 letter from CYFD to the mother recommended the father file for sole custody of the children after they said they were kicked and slapped by Maestas.
The letter said she “continuously minimized the disclosures of the children, and insisted Mr. Maestas did not harm [her] children in any way despite being shown photographs of [her] children’s injuries.”
Judge Jason Lidyard ordered Maestas’ release immediately, according to court documents. Maestas was in custody after violating his conditions of release, documents said.
The mother was not in custody before the trial. She has no criminal history in New Mexico.