Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

Ax wielding man gets three years in New Mexico prison | Local News

State District Judge T. Glenn Ellington on Tuesday sentenced an Acoma Pueblo man to three years in prison as part of a plea deal that settles a count of vandalism and three counts of probation violations.

Brandon Begay, 32, appears to have lived on the streets of Santa Fe for several years and has been charged with multiple crimes, including public aggression and criminal damage to property.

He first made headlines in June 2020 when he was confronted by police at a downtown park, where he was suspected of waving a whip and ax at passers-by. After throwing the ax at a Santa Fe police officer, he was hit with a stun gun and arrested, according to a police report.

In July 2020, he was accused of breaking into a vehicle in Tomasitas and pointing a pistol at the vehicle owner, who was there after leaving the restaurant, court records show.

A week later, he was charged with assaulting a woman along with another man. All three people involved in the incident were reportedly homeless.

Begay agreed to a plea deal in March 2021 that settled reduced charges in those cases and imposed a three-year suspended sentence, according to court records, but he violated the terms of the deal by filing new charges and testing positive for drugs.

He drew renewed public attention in August when he was accused of smashing numerous car windows at Trader Joe’s on a Saturday afternoon. He was charged with 12 counts of criminal damage to property.

Ellington imposed the suspended sentence in the 2021 deal as part of the new plea deal.

Begay has been held without bail since the August incident and is receiving credit for time served.

Begay offered no explanation Tuesday, other than to ask if he was eligible for daily credits while serving his sentence at a New Mexico prison. The judge told him he would do it.

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