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Santa Fe woman charged in child abuse

September 24, 2018

Santa Fe police have arrested a 20-year-old Santa Fe woman and charged her with child abuse resulting in great bodily harm to her 5-year-old stepson.

Police say Melynie Curtis is suspected of seriously injuring the boy, whose name police are not releasing, sometime Saturday afternoon.

Santa Fe Police Department Lt. Sean Strahon said the boy was airlifted to University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque, where he remains hospitalized.

The boy’s condition was not available.

Strahon said Curtis told police the boy’s injuries were the result of an “unintentional drowning,” but Strahon said the injuries “are inconsistent with his stepmother’s story about what occurred.”

“The physical evidence does not support her story,” Strahon said.

Police are not revealing details about what sort of injuries the boy sustained, nor where he was hurt. Strahon said paramedics found the boy on the floor of the hallway outside the bathroom of an apartment.

Paramedics called police at 5:54 p.m., Strahon said. Police officers brought Curtis and the boy’s father, who had been at work, to the police station for questioning shortly thereafter.

“We conducted interviews with both of them, and after speaking with the suspect felt we had enough to make an arrest,” Strahon said.

Police did not arrest the father. Strahon declined to release the man’s name, as he is not a suspect.

Strahon said Curtis does not appear to have a criminal background, though he said there was a recent Children, Youth and Families Department case involving injuries the boy may have sustained at school. That case has since been closed.

A search of online court records indicates Curtis had a Municipal Court civil complaint filed against her last year for nonpayment of rent. The judge ruled in favor of the plaintiff in that case.

If the child dies, Strahon said the criminal charge will be upgraded to child abuse resulting in death.

He said police are investigating the case.

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