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Teen charged with first-degree murder

Staff and wire reports

PORTALES — A Roosevelt County grand jury has indicted a Portales teenager on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of a Portales woman.

Richard Baca, 18, is accused in the April slaying of Amber Robinson, 19. Her body was found in the back yard of the house where Baca lives.

Portales police Capt. Lonnie Berry said Robinson may have died from blows following a confrontation with her attacker. The homicide was Portales’ first since 1998.

A news release from District Attorney Brett Carter said Robinson was killed on April 27. The victim’s family reported her missing on April 26.

Carter’s news release said the grand jury heard testimony Wednesday from the victim’s parents, one of the persons she was last seen with, and from four police officers.

Baca also was charged with two counts of tampering with evidence for allegedly burying Robinson’s body and burning carpet and rags covered with her blood.

Baca remained jailed Thursday without bond at the Roosevelt County Detention Center.

The charges against Baca originally were filed in juvenile court because he was 17 at the time. The district attorney’s office said Thursday the indictment means the case will be handled in adult court.

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