Trial set to start for Hobbs woman accused of throwing baby in dumpster

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HOBBS, N.M – Alexis Avila, accused of throwing her newborn baby in a Hobbs dumpster, will go on trial Tuesday. 

Avila’s attorney filed a motion to change the location of the trial in mid-March, claiming they wouldn’t be able to find an impartial jury in Lea County.

But the judge denied that, and opening statements could start as soon as Tuesday.

It all started with this surveillance video from January 2022. A local business in Hobbs captured a teenager throwing away a bag of trash.

Later that night, dumpster divers found the bag with a newborn baby boy inside.

“He’s still got his umbilical chord, and he’s freezing cold, and he’s very like- he’s gray. He’s very very very weak.”

Avila told detectives she was the one in the surveillance video.

Prosecutors originally charged her with attempted murder. They later dropped it, so Avila is now facing felony child abuse.

Avila had a hearing less than a week after the business caught her on video, where the state called multiple witnesses who handled the baby, and interviewed the teenage mother. 

“I was expecting to see someone who was remorseful, you know, truly affected by such an event and I did not.  It was very, too little emotion out of her which was not that of someone that had done such atrocity,” said Hobbs Police Department Detective Daniel Perez. 

The judge put Avila on house arrest, with no chance of seeing her baby boy.

“The evidence against the defendant is overwhelming. Seldom do you see the events of the alleged crimes on videotape, you see what is alleged with much supporting evidence on the actual crime in video. Seldom do you also have it butted with a confession,” said the judge. 

In April 2022, Avila asked the judge to reconsider that. 

“I would like to see my baby because I have been taking counseling classes that I know have been helping me. I would also like to love and care for him. I know people portray me as a terrible person but in reality, I am not,” said Avila.

The judge denied that request.

Months later, the defense requested a continuance, asking the judge to postpone the trial originally scheduled for December 2022. 

The judge pushed it to April, knowing he needs to fit it in before he leaves the bench May 1.

Then came the defense’s request in March to change the trial’s location, claiming media attention could prevent them from finding an impartial jury. The judge denied it.

On Monday, the district attorney confirms jury selection will start Tuesday morning, and depending on timing– opening statements could start Tuesday too.

The trial is scheduled to last through Friday.