Police Blotter: Church Rock man sentenced to 18 years for sexual abuse

ALBUQUERQUE

A Church Rock, New Mexico, man was sentenced Tuesday to 216 months (18 years) in federal prison after pleading guilty to abusive sexual contact with a child under the age of 12.

Patrick Begay, 43, will also be under supervised probation after he is released and will be required to register as a sex offender.

When Begay was arrested in November 2016, he was originally charged with four counts of criminal sexual contact with a minor but in the plea agreement leading to him admitting guilt on one count, the other three charges were dropped.

The major question in this case was how much time Begay would have to serve.

Since he has never had a case in federal court before, he was placed in a criminal category of 1, which would have called for a prison sentence, under current guidelines, of between 235 and 293 months.

An evaluation by the federal probation office recommended a sentence of between 144 to 216 months, which Begay’s defense team pushed for the lower end of that recommendation — 144 months.

The judge in this case went, however, with the high end of the probation office’s recommendation.

Born in Gallup and raised in Pinehill, New Mexico, Begay worked from 1998 to 2012 as an insurance claims specialist with the Navajo Nation.

Court records said that the case was investigated at first by tribal police, who arrested him on Jan. 7, 2016. The accuser said the abuse took place over a two-year period.

“(Begay) made admissions to the tribal officer who arrested him,” court records said, “He stated it was a shock and a surprise that the officer was there but (he) admitted that it did happen.”

 To read the full article, pick up your copy of the Navajo Times at your nearest newsstand Thursday mornings!

  Find newsstand locations at this link.



Categories: Police Blotter