ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Rio Arriba County Sheriff Tommy Rodella is asking a judge to disqualify the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Mexico from prosecuting him, saying there’s bad blood.
Rodella’s attorneys plan to call U.S. attorney Damon Martinez as a witness during the trial.
The motion said U.S. Attorney Martinez and his office have conflicts of interest in this case. Rodella intends to question Martinez about threats he allegedly made to arrest and prosecute Rodella.
Last month, Rodella was indicted on federal charges for conspiracy to violate a motorist’s civil rights during a traffic stop in March. The charges include assault, unlawful use of a gun, and intimidation.
Rodella’s plead not guilty.
The motion said since Rodella intends to call Martinez as a witness and the U.S. Attorney’s Office should be disqualified because the office answers to Martinez.
Rodella has a checkered past as a judge and a cop and has been investigated by the feds before.
His law enforcement license remains suspended after he did not attend a board hearing to appeal it earlier this week.
He does not need the certification to serve as sheriff.
Martinez’s office said it’ll respond to the motion in court.
The Rio Arriba County Commission has called for Rodella to resign.
He only has three months left on the job, as he lost his primary in June.