Fruitland man charged with assault in Indian Country

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FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Department of Justice Building is pictured

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office, announced today that Elijah Cudei Etsitty was arraigned on an indictment charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury in Indian Country. Etsitty, 25, of Fruitland, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, will remain on conditions of release pending trial, which has not been scheduled.

A federal grand jury indicted Etsitty on Aug. 23. According to the indictment and other court records, on June 27, 2021, Etsitty assaulted a victim, identified as Jane Doe, in San Juan County, New Mexico, on the Navajo Nation. The assault resulted in serious bodily injury to Jane Doe.

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An indictment is only an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Etsitty faces up to 10 years in prison.

The Farmington Resident Agency of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office investigated this case with assistance from the Shiprock Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Mark Pfizenmayer is prosecuting the case.

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