Ronnie Ross has been charged with a felony for allegedly spitting on an employee at the Sobering Center last month

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FARMINGTON —  A Shiprock man is facing a felony battery charge after being accused of spitting on an employee at the Sobering Center.

Ronnie Ross, 49, was charged Feb. 27 in Farmington Magistrate Court with a felony for allegedly battering a health care worker, according to court records.

His preliminary hearing is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Wednesday in Farmington Magistrate Court.

His attorney, public defender Ruth Wheeler, could not be reached for comment today.

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Ross allegedly spit on the left arm of a female employee at the Sobering Center on Feb. 24, according to the statement for probable cause.He was also allegedly uncooperative with staff and refused to take a breathalyzer test, according to court documents.

A Farmington police officer transported Ross to the Sobering Center after he was found on the sidewalk outside the Farmington Indian Center, according to court documents. After being transported to the Sobering Center, Ross refused to leave the patrol vehicle, the documents state.

Ross allegedly threatened the officer as he was being led into the Sobering Center, according to court documents.

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Ross has one previous misdemeanor and three felony convictions for assault or battery.

Ross was convicted of battery of a health care worker on Aug. 13, 2013, in district court, and he pleaded no contest to the same charge on Aug. 9, 2010, according to court records. He also pleaded no contest to battery on an officer, also a felony, on May 8, 1998.

Ross further pleaded no contest on Feb. 2, 2016, to a misdemeanor for attempted battery on a health care worker after he shoved an employee at the Four Winds Recovery Center, according to the statement for probable cause.

He is currently being held at the San Juan County Adult Detention Center on a $10,000 cash/surety bond.

Joshua Kellogg covers crime, courts and social issues for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627.

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