A Cortez man pleaded guilty Tuesday to an act of domestic violence with an agreement to cap his possible prison sentence at three years with the Colorado Department of Corrections.
Gabriel N. Christian, 40, admitted that on Dec. 5, he entered a Cortez residence, grabbed a woman with whom he was intimately involved by the hair and clothing and forced her into a vehicle. Their 4-year-old and 6-year-old children also were in the vehicle, according to a Cortez police report.
He pleaded guilty to second-degree kidnapping by carrying or seizing the victim, a Class 4 felony. The charge carries a maximum penalty of six years with DOC, but a plea agreement caps his possible prison sentence at three years.
Judge Todd Plewe, of the 22nd Judicial District, ordered a community corrections and Drug Court screening for the defendant.
Sentencing is scheduled for April 16. On that day, Christian is also scheduled for a plea hearing in a separate case from October in which he is accused of chasing with a baseball bat the mother of the woman with whom he was intimately involved. He is charged with felony menacing and felony criminal mischief for hitting a vehicle with the baseball bat.
On the domestic violence charge that Christian pleaded guilty to on Tuesday, a Cortez police report states a neighbor provided police with video surveillance footage.
According to the report, the video shows Christian holding a small “souvenir bat.” He is seen entering a residence and exits while holding the female victim by the sweatshirt and hair. Christian then forced the woman into the backseat of the vehicle.
A witness who lives at that house told police that Christian and the woman had been in an argument the night before, so she picked her and brought her to her home.
The next morning, she said Christian showed up at her house, peeked through the kitchen window, barged into the home uninvited and started arguing with the woman.
She said Christian had a bat in his hand and was threatening to hit the victim. He dragged her out of the house, causing a cup of coffee to spill on the woman’s leg.
Police then arrested Christian at his residence in Cortez. He said he is in the process of getting help from Axis Health System. When police interviewed the female victim, she said she did not want to get in the car, did not want to go with Christian and that Christian hurt her.
The incident report states that on the way to the Montezuma County Detention Center, Christian hit his head against the partition in a patrol vehicle, causing a laceration on his forehead.
He posted a $25,000 cash or surety bond the day after his arrest, according to court documents.