12-Year-Old Protects Mother From Alleged Attack By Father

Santa Teresa, NM – An argument turned physical earlier this morning resulting in the arrest of a Santa Teresa man after he allegedly attempted to strangle his wife.

According to Sheriff's Investigators, RICARDO A. GUTIERREZ, age 30, of the 5400 block of Crest Drive, Santa Teresa, allegedly slapped his wife and when she threatened to call police, allegedly struck her several more times, taking the telephone away from her.

GUTIERREZ then allegedly attempted to strangle the Victim, age 31, but was rebuffed by his twelve year old son, who interceded, protecting his mother.

GUTIERREZ'S other three children, ranging in ages from one to nine, were hiding in another room during the incident.

GUTIERREZ, who was allegedly intoxicated at the time, was charged by Sheriff's Investigators with three (3) counts of Battery Against a Household Member and one count of Interference with Communications, all misdemeanors.

GUTIERREZ, a Transport Officer at the Prison in Otero County, Chaparral, was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center under a $4,000.00 Surety Bond.