Suspect accused of inhaling from can of pressurized air


FARMINGTON — A San Juan County man is accused of battering two juvenile males and slapping a woman after inhaling from a can of pressurized air.

Steven Toney, 29, is accused of two third-degree felony counts of child abuse and a misdemeanor count of battery, according to court documents.

He is accused of punching a 15-year-old boy and a 17-year-old boy, and slapping a woman across the face after he inhaled from a can of pressurized air, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

Toney did not have legal representation today in this case.

Public defender Ruth Wheeler, who represented Toney in a pretrial release hearing and represents him in a separate case, could not be reached for comment today.

Farmington police were dispatched around 2:06 p.m. on June 14 to a residence in the 900 block of North Auburn Avenue on reports of a battery, according to the affidavit.

The female victim told police Toney battered her and two juvenile males, and had fled the area before police arrived.

The 15-year-old victim told police Toney had become upset and agitated after a relative called the boy regarding Toney's "huffing" from a can of pressurized air.  

Toney allegedly charged toward the 15-year-old, and the 17-year-old male stepped in between. The younger boy told police Toney reached around the older boy and punched him once in the face.

The 17-year-old told police Toney then punched him a total of seven times in the upper torso, his chest and the right side of his face.

Toney was allegedly pushed out of the residence by the 17-year-old and the female victim, who stated Toney slapped her in the face and ran south from the scene.

His preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday morning in Farmington Magistrate Court.

The San Juan County District Attorney's Office filed a motion to hold Toney without bond pending trial, according to the motion. It cites felony convictions for possession of a controlled substance, unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, escape from jail and attempted bribery of a witness, along with multiple misdemeanor convictions.

District Judge John Dean Jr. granted the prosecution's motion to hold Toney without bond at the San Juan County Detention Center during a Friday hearing.

Toney also has a case in Aztec Magistrate Court where he is accused of misdemeanor counts of battery and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer and a petty misdemeanor count of battery, according to court documents.

A warrant for failure to appear in the Aztec Magistrate Court case was issued on March 15, according to court records.

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

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