Teen accused of downtown Albuquerque shooting released with GPS ankle monitor

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An Albuquerque judge released the suspect in a recent downtown shooting to pretrial services Friday.

19-year-old Antonio Santillanes Jr. is accused of shooting a man near 6th and Gold multiple times last Thursday. He was arrested the same night after his father drove him to a BCSO substation.

According to a criminal complaint, it happened after an altercation between two other men. The victim – identified as Alfonso Abeyta – was reportedly arguing with a man about his underage girlfriend. The complaint says he allegedly tried to force the girl to get inside his car and armed himself with brass knuckles. Prosecutors say Santillanes pulled out a gun and shot Abeyta 3 times in the abdomen.

"There is a legitimate defense of others in this case, which is a New Mexico defense,” said Santillane’s attorney, Ashley Reymore-Cloud.

Santillane’s attorney, and the father of the girl involved in the incident, told the judge they believe she could’ve been kidnapped if Santillanes was not there.

"He [Abeyta] is a predator from day one they started dating," said Michael Montoya. "She was physically scared of him mentally and everything, and if Antonio wasn’t there that day, honestly I wouldn’t know where my daughter is."

Prosecutors say surveillance video of the incident shows the victim did not approach Santillanes before shots were fired, and asked the court to disregard any claim of self-defense.

Judge Bruce Fox said the teen’s cooperation with authorities, and a lack of criminal record were reasons he agreed to release Santillanes before his trial.

"This was not just the defendant acting aggressively towards others, and based on his lack of any kind of criminal history, I feel like the court can fashion conditions that we can keep the community safe,” said judge Fox.

Santillanes will be required to wear an ankle monitor.