The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Man charged in shooting death denied release


April 27, 2018

Eamon Scarbrough

Gerardo Marquez listens as Deputy District Attorney Jake Boazman asks the court to deny bail.

PORTALES - A Portales man charged with murder following an April 19 shooting death has been denied release from the Roosevelt County Adult Detention Center.

District Judge Drew Tatum on Thursday made the ruling after hearing arguments from prosecution and defense attorneys.

Gerardo Marquez, 34, is accused of killing Erika Zamorano, 32, at her home on the 900 block of East Second Street in Portales.

To provide "clear and convincing evidence" that Marquez' release would be a danger to the community, Deputy District Attorney Jake Boazman called Detective Christopher Mitchell, the case agent on the investigation, to testify.

Boazman gleaned from Mitchell that the National Crime Information Center shows that Marquez has two previous charges of possession of drugs and one charge of possession with intent to distribute.

Mitchell also told Boazman that Zamorano had complained to family members of abuse at the hands of Marquez, and that a search of her phone showed a text message from March 29 in which Marquez wrote "I'm sorry I did what I did to you."

In his cross-examination, Marquez' attorney Daniel Lindsey questioned Mitchell about witness Pedro Pena, who, according to an arrest affidavit, went with Marquez to Zamorano's house on the morning of April 19. Marquez and Zamorano allegedly went inside alone, after which Pena heard "a single boom, later explained as a possible gunshot."

Lindsey called into question Pena's credibility as a witness, noting that he and Marquez had allegedly been using methamphetamine around the time the incident was alleged to have occurred.

Next on the stand was Officer Jonathan Brashear, who related to Boazman behavior Marquez exhibited when Brashear attempted to retrieve a DNA sample from him at the Clovis Police Department.

"During execution of the search warrant, Mr. Marquez struck myself with his knee, and in execution of the search warrant, he was not being cooperative," Brashear said.

Based on the violent nature of the alleged crime and the testimony from both witnesses, Boazman asked that Marquez be found to be dangerous.

"There is a person who has died as a result of this incident, and we believe there is probable cause for an arrest warrant. This court's determination is clear and convincing, and we're asking that the community cannot be safe by any means reasonable," Boazman said.

Lindsey argued that because Marquez has no history of violence and because there is a lack of background information on Pena, there was not sufficient evidence to keep his client in jail.

"(The state's) only eyewitness is a person who, according to Detective Mitchell, admitted to doing methamphetamine that day," he said.

He also contended that his client had a steady job, is a homeowner with three children, and a life member of his church.

Tatum based his decision to keep Marquez in jail on "the high strength of the case and some criminal history involving drugs and prior allegations of threats against the victim, as well as the allegation of pointing a gun at the victim on a prior occasion."


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