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Clovis man pleads guilty to sex offence

Cops and Courts

A Clovis man ended his trial on sex charges Tuesday by agreeing to plead guilty.

Thomas Roybal, 32, will go to prison for three years, District Attorney Brett Carter said.

Roybal was on trial for three counts of criminal sexual contact with a minor. Carter said the crimes occurred in November 2002 and involved a female victim under 18 who was a cousin of someone Roybal knew.

Carter said that while Deputy District Attorney Andrea Reeb was prosecuting the case before a jury and had presented testimony by the victim and two other witnesses, Roybal decided to plead guilty.

Roybal had been in jail since March 2003 when he was arrested by the Clovis Police Department. Carter said Judge Stephen Quinn sentenced Roybal, who had no prior record, to three years in state prison to be followed by five years of probation. Roybal will also have to register as a sex offender upon release.

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U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., announced Wednesday that he and U.S. Rep. Tom Udall, D-N.M., became two of the founding members of the “Congressional Stop DUI Caucus.” The group of four senators and 19 congressmen have an announced goal of calling attention to public health and safety problems associated with driving while intoxicated.

None of the other caucus members are from New Mexico.

The caucus has members of both political parties and is co-chaired by three U.S. Representatives, two Republican and one Democrat.

Bingaman said the announcement was timed to precede the Memorial Day weekend, which he said is traditionally the beginning of a significant rise in drunken driving deaths during the summer months.

Cops and Courts is compiled by CNJ staff writer Darrell Todd Maurina. He can be contacted at 763-6991 or:

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