August 27, 2015

Martinez bond increased; lawyer claims he never left CO

Mugshot of Timothy Jason Martinez, taken in Denver in August, 2015

Jason Martinez appeared in court in Denver on Thursday for violating his bond on two criminal cases he faces in Colorado.

Mugshot of Timothy Jason Martinez, taken in Denver in August, 2015

Mugshot of Timothy Jason Martinez, taken in Denver in August, 2015

According to KOB-TV, Martinez will face $100,000 bond on each of the cases and be required to wear  an alcohol and GPS monitor. The former Albuquerque Public Schools deputy superintendent will also face restrictions on contact with minors; he will only be able to have contact with minors while under supervision.

The Associated Press also reported the increased bond.

Martinez was arrested in 2013 for multiple felonies of sexual abuse of a child, as first reported by New Mexico Political Report. He was arrested again earlier this year for domestic abuse.

Martinez worked at Albuquerque Public Schools without the district knowing about his criminal past. This was because the district never completed a required background check.

All school personnel and volunteers must undergo background checks, including fingerprints. A background check would have flagged Martinez’s criminal charges.

KOB-TV reported that the defense argued that Martinez never left Colorado, and telecommuted.

The defense argued Martinez was in Colorado all along and telecommuted with the district per an arrangement with his bosses, but the district attorney said Albuquerque Public Schools told them Martinez had been at the district’s headquarters more than 20 times between July and August.

However, an interview with APS superintendent Luis Valentino showed that he said Martinez was in the state and even visited a school, though never had contact with children.

He went to a school once, but a group of us went. And when we arrived we were waiting for some food to arrive so that we could give it to a class. He left [the school]. So he didn’t even walk in with us into the classroom. He went to the campus, we were all together. And then he left. Because it took a long time for stuff to materialize. So he left. He came back to the office because he had a meeting.

Valentino described something similar to the Albuquerque Journal in an article this week.

Although parents have expressed concern about their children’s safety around Martinez, Valentino said he was on the grounds of an APS school only once, for a celebration. And Valentino said he was with Martinez at the school.

On Twitter, APS board member Stephen Michael Quezada pushed back at the lawyer’s contention that Martinez never left Colorado.

He also called Martinez a “con man.”

Correction: This story originally referred to Martinez as the “former Albuquerque Public Schools superintendent” instead of deputy superintendent. We regret the error.