FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 17, 2021
Contact: Jerri Mares– (505) 321-4372
ALBUQUERQUE, NM– Today, Attorney General Hector Balderas announced that
James Stewart was convicted of seven additional counts of child abuse in front of Judge Cindy Leos. Judge Leos sentenced Stewart to an additional six years in prison to run consecutive to his 20 year sentence after conviction at a jury trial in 2019. Stewart will now serve a total sentence of 26 years in the Department of Corrections.
Agents from the Office of the Attorney General conducted a human trafficking training at Lew Wallace Elementary, instructing teachers on how to observe signs of trafficking and abuse. It was through this training that the teachers were able to identify signs and report the case to the Attorney General. Through this partnership between the teachers and the AG, the kids have now been removed from their abusive parents and have been adopted by a loving family.
“This case triggered calls to improve reporting and intervention for children. The State must provide more resources to our teachers so we can protect the children of New Mexico,” said Attorney General Balderas. “New Mexico must do better.”
AG Balderas has requested increased funding from the Legislature in the upcoming Session to enhance prosecution of human trafficking and violence against children.
This case was investigated by special agents from the Office of the Attorney General and prosecuted by Assistant Attorneys General Brittany DuChaussee and Collin Brennan.