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  • Writer's pictureABQ RAW

Couple with history of domestic violence has one final dispute when wife shoots husband dead on 4th

BY: ABQ RAW staff

POSTED: 07/07/2023 @1:15PM

SW Albuquerque -

The Albuquerque Police Department homicide unit has arrested Erica Valdez and charged her with the murder of her husband, Joel Valdez in Southwest Albuquerque. The murder happened on July 4th, 2023 in the early morning hours.

According to relatives the couple had been continuously fighting for the past few months. The disputes between them escalated in the past week as Erica and Joel Valdez both accused each other of having relationships outside their marriage.

According to the criminal complaint, on Tuesday, July 4, 2023, Joel Valdez confronted Erica Valdez and another man at a motel. The man Erica was with pointed a handgun at Joel Valdez. Erica Valdez also appeared at the doorway with her own handgun, so Joel Valdez got the hint and left the motel.

The complaint goes on to say, that later that evening, at around 9:40 p.m., Erica Valdez showed up at the home she shared with Joel Valdez, located at 10039 Andrews Ave., S.E., and pointed a handgun at his chest. As Erica Valdez left the home, surveillance video revealed a volley of automatic gunfire in the area. Damage from gunfire was later located at the house. A relative also reported that Erica Valdez called and said, “I just sprayed the house.”

APD received a 911 call from the home on Andrews Ave. at 9:41 p.m. and the 911 call-taker heard a female screaming at the male, stating, “I am going to shoot you and hit you with this gun.” The confrontation continued, and the female could be heard saying, “You better get that female out of the house before I shoot her.” Officers attempted to make contact at the home, but did not locate anyone.

The complaint goes on to say, family spotted Joel Valdez’s car with the door open, and noticed a dark sedan that appeared to be Erica Valdez’s car make a U-turn and leave the area. They found Joel’s body on the road, next to his car. First-responders arrived at the scene and determined Joel Valdez had died as a result of gunshot wound.

Erika Valdez has been charged with Open Count of Murder in the First Degree, Shooting at or from a Motor Vehicle, Shooting at or from a Motor Vehicle, and Aggravated Assault (Deadly Weapon). Editor note: Erika Valdez was booked under the name Erika Santiago.

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