Fabian Gonzales found guilty on all charges
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — After less than four hours of deliberations, a jury found Fabian Gonzales guilty on all nine charges for his role in the August 2016 death of Victoria Martens.
Gonzales was charged with:
- One count of first-degree reckless child abuse resulting in death
- Seven counts of third-degree felony tampering with evidence
- One count of fourth-degree felony conspiracy to tamper with evidence
The grandparents of Victoria Martens hugged the prosecutors that secured a conviction in the trial.
“I mean, this trial was an undertaking,” said Deputy District Attorney Greer Staley. “It was on a huge scale like nothing that we’ve, at least nothing that I’ve ever seen.”
Staley and James Grayson represented the state in the case. They had been building the prosecution strategy for nearly six years.
“We are super pleased that the jury came back guilty on all counts,” Staley said.
Gonzales was taken back into custody, where he will await his sentencing hearing in the next few months.
“I think he’s shocked. I know his wife is very upset and distraught,” said Stephen Aarons, Gonzales’ attorney. “It’s unjust for him to serve the kind of time he’ll be serving given the minor role in this case, if any role at all. But, I can understand the emotions that ran through everyone.”
The Martens’ family didn’t want to comment, and left the courthouse without saying a word.
“We wanted to make sure each individual who was responsible for Victoria’s death – that they were punished and those people will be in prison for what they did,” Grayson said.
However, according to the state, there is still an unidentified man who is responsible for Victoria’s murder – that has not been held accountable.
SENTENCING FOR FABIAN GONZALES
The jury ruled Fabian Gonzales was guilty on all nine counts against him.
- Child abuse with reckless disregard resulting in the death of a child under the age of 12: This first-degree felony carries a mandatory 18-year sentence under New Mexico law.
- Seven counts of tampering with evidence: Each count is a third-degree felony, carrying a three-year sentence. That means a possible 21 years for those charges.
- Conspiracy to commit tampering with evidence: This fourth-degree felony holds a one-and-a-half-year sentence.
Gonzales faces a maximum of 40 1/2 years in prison, but ultimately, Judge Cindy Leos does have some leeway with sentencing.
To revisit any portion of the trial, click here.