NM senator charged with DWI enters not guilty plea | KOB 4
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NM senator charged with DWI enters not guilty plea

Kai Porter
July 02, 2019 09:02 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- Democratic state Senator Richard Martinez pleaded not guilty to DWI Tuesday.

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Police say Martinez was driving a vehicle while drunk and crashed into a Jeep Friday night.

He was released on his own recognizance.

KOB 4 reporter Kai Porter visited an address in Ojo Caliente that listed for senator Martinez in the criminal complaint.

However, no one answered repeated knocks at the door and no one returned Porter’s phone calls.

Martinez’s trial date or deadline to strike a plea deal is Oct. 18.

In the meantime, Steve Pearce – chairman of the New Mexico Republican Party – is calling on the Martinez to resign.

In a statement, Pearce says, "His actions and behaviors are out of line and he should resign his position immediately and apologize to his constituents for his dangerous and reckless conduct."

The statement is in stark contrast to how it responded to Republican state Representative Monica Youngblood's DWI arrest last year. The GOP did not call for Younglood to resign. She ran for re-election and lost.

Democrats called for the New Mexico Attorney General to investigate Youngblood, accusing her of using her position as an elected official to try and talk officers out of arresting her.

So far, senate Democrats are not calling for senator Martinez's resignation.

They have called him a “valued member of our caucus” and said he is “entitled to the process afforded him under the law."

Lindsey Valdez, the program director for Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), said that high profile incidents like these are really disappointing. 

"I think the community looks towards these individuals as a guide in how to live," Valdez said. "The old adage to 'practice what you preach' and I think it's really important that all individuals are committed to not contributing to the problem. We all share the roadways in New Mexico every single day and everyone plays a piece in keeping the roads safe." 

Credits

Kai Porter

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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