Tucumcari police officer facing assault, battery charges

Freedom New Mexico

State police say a Tucumcari police officer assaulted his wife over text messages to another man.

Robert Vargas, a four-year veteran of the Tucumcari Police Department was arraigned Monday morning in the Quay County Magistrate Court on the charge of aggravated assault and battery of a household member. He pleaded not guilty and has posted $2,000 cash bond.

Vargas was also placed on paid administrative leave.

State police Officer Marcus Lopez said the victim told him Vargas, who she identified as her husband, pushed her to the floor of their bedroom, straddled her and began to punch her several times. He said the victim told him she was then moved to the bed where Vargas straddled her again and began hitting her on the face.

Lopez said he photographed bruising on both arms, her nose was swelling, she had cuts on two right hand fingers and a large red mark on her forehead.

Attempts to contact Vargas have been unsuccessful.