A man accused of raping two teenage girls and a woman in Santa Fe in the past five months said he now lives out of state and wasn’t aware he was scheduled to appear at a Thursday hearing in one of the three cases in the Santa Fe County Magistrate Court.
A nationwide arrest warrant was issued for 23-year-old Maury Elliott, whose most recent rape charges were filed Jan. 22. By that time, Elliott said in a phone interview this week, he had moved to Las Vegas, Nev.
Elliott, arrested in the first rape case in October and charged again Jan. 16 for allegations involving a Jan. 10 incident, said he believed he was only charged in the third case because he has been “demonized” by local media. In that case, he is accused of raping a teen in September.
“I’m going to be the enemy,” said Elliott, who reached out to The New Mexican on Wednesday. “Period.”
He faces two charges of second-degree criminal sexual penetration, three charges of third-degree criminal sexual penetration, two charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and one charge each of criminal sexual contact with a minor, and kidnapping.
He denied committing any crimes and said the encounters with the teens — ages 15 and 17 — and the 27-year-old woman were consensual. He said he does not understand why he is facing charges.
He would not answer direct questions about whether he had sex with any of the accusers.
“At this point in my life, I don’t even know what constitutes rape anymore,” Elliott said.
It’s unclear why Elliott has not been arrested in the most recent cases — which were filed just days after a judge allowed him to be released from electronic monitoring. At that time, he informed the court he would be moving to Las Vegas.
Henry Varela, a spokesman for the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office, said in an email Thursday that Elliot’s arrest is outside the responsibility of the office.
“This is a law enforcement issue until the defendant is picked up on the warrant,” Varela wrote. “Our prosecution and detention efforts begin at the point of arrest.”
Greg Gurulé, a spokesman for the Santa Fe Police Department, said in an email that Elliott provided the agency with a relative’s address in Las Vegas but has not been found. “We have been in contact with Las Vegas’ special victims unit and he has not been located,” Gurulé wrote. “He has family in other states and we do not have any confirmation of where he is.”
Officers have verified Elliott’s former apartment, in the 3300 block of Cerrillos Road, has been vacated, Gurulé said.
Elliott was arrested on the first charges Oct. 24 after a 15-year-old girl alleged he had raped her that month. He was released from the Santa Fe County jail on a $2,500 unsecured bond and placed on GPS monitoring by Magistrate David Segura.
About a week later, he was arrested again on suspicion of failing to abide by the conditions of his release.
When his case was moved from Magistrate Court to state District Court, prosecutors did not file a motion requesting that Elliott be detained until trial or to set new conditions for his release, according to online court records. During a Jan. 6 hearing, District Judge T. Glenn Ellington removed Elliott from GPS monitoring, and Elliott signed a document that said he would be living in Las Vegas.
According to court documents, he is accused of raping a woman four days later after meeting her outside a downtown bar. Six days after that alleged assault, he was charged with raping the 17-year-old.
Both teenage girls told investigators Elliott had given them alcohol, and they said they believed he put drugs in the drinks. The woman also told investigators she believed he drugged her.
In the phone interview, Elliott denied drugging any of the accusers.
He said the two girls and the woman could have removed themselves from the situations at any time. He also accused them of coming onto him and described himself as a “player.”