Shiprock man sentenced in hit-and-run case
FARMINGTON — A Shiprock man has been sentenced to nearly four years in federal prison after striking a woman with his car near Hogback and driving away from the scene.
Terrell Antonio, 41, was sentenced on Tuesday in federal court in Albuquerque to three years and 10 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for a federal assault charge, according to a U.S. Department of Justice press release.
Antonio was indicted last year on Feb. 24 and charged with assault resulting in serious bodily injury and assault with a dangerous weapon for the incident on Jan. 17, 2016, according to court documents.
He pleaded guilty on July 22 to assault resulting in serious bodily injury and admitted to striking the women with his car. The woman suffered a fractured hip, a broken right arm and head trauma and was transported to San Juan Regional Medical Center by helicopter, according to the criminal complaint.
During an interview with the Navajo Department of Criminal Investigation, the woman said the incident took place after she and Antonio left a Farmington movie theater, according to the criminal complaint. The case was also investigated by the FBI Farmington office.
The woman told police Antonio was drinking before and during a movie and then decided to leave before the film ended, declaring it was boring, according to the criminal complaint.
While the woman was driving Antonio back to Shiprock, he asked her to pull over at a gas station in Hogback and she refused, the complaint states. Then Antonio reached over, turned off the ignition and pulled out the keys, which led the woman to stop the car on the shoulder of the road and exit the vehicle.
The woman started walking toward Shiprock, and Antonio then struck her with the car, according to the complaint.
The complaint states the woman did not realize the vehicle hit her until she regained consciousness and witnesses told her what happened.
One witness told police the woman was walking on the shoulder of the highway and was hit by a car that did not slow down after striking her.
Antonio was arrested later that night after getting into a fight with his father, according to the complaint.
When Navajo police responded to the fight, they noticed the car outside matched the description of the vehicle suspected to be involved in a hit and run earlier that night. Police also noted the car had front-end damage.
When interviewed by police, Antonio initially claimed he dropped off the woman in Shiprock. He also claimed he had been driving around with two unknown women and a log hit his windshield, the complaint states.
Antonio submitted a statement to the court on Feb. 16 apologizing for his actions.
"I've prayed for forgiveness for the victim and from the victim," the letter states. "Keeping in touch with the Lord has taught and kept me from making wrong decisions."
Antonio also wrote in the letter that he was working on remaining sober and was attending AA meetings.
Joshua Kellogg covers crime, courts and social issues for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627.