Police accuse Las Cruces man of beating woman with shotgun

Justin Garcia
Las Cruces Sun-News

Note: This article contains descriptions of domestic violence and violence against women. La Casa offers emergency shelter via walk-in between 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. or by calling 575-526-9513. This article also contains a discussion and description of sexual assault and sexual violence. If you or someone you know experienced sexual violence, you can call La Piñon's 24-Hour Crisis Hotline at 575-526-3437 or go to

LAS CRUCES - Prosecutors are seeking to keep a man accused of using a shotgun to beat a woman in jail pending trial. 

Cody Lancaster, 24, was arrested on charged with aggravated battery on a household member with a deadly weapon and aggravated assault on a household member, according to a criminal complaint. 

In a statement of facts, the Las Cruces Police Department said that police discovered a woman near the 2000 Block of South Triviz Drive. The woman was bloodied, bleeding from the face and head, and was transported to a Las Cruces hospital, police said. 

There, she told police that Lancaster had picked her up early on the morning of April 6 and taken her back to his apartment. The affidavit did not give any indication if Lancaster and the woman were in a relationship. However, the woman told police that Lancaster removed his pants and demanded that she perform oral sex on him. When she refused, she said that Lancaster forced her head down to his crotch. 

She told police that she was able to get away from Lancaster but that Lancaster began to toss her belongings around. As she tried to pick them up, Lancaster revealed a shotgun and struck the back of her head three times, the woman said. When she was able to get up, she said that Lancaster shoved the shotgun into her mouth. The woman told police that she was able to get away by biting Lancaster's hand and fleeing the apartment. 

Only about 7 percent of sexual assault claims made by adults are fabricated, according to a peer-reviewed study published in the journal Violence Against Woman. 

When confronted by the police, Lancaster presented a different version of events. 

He told police that he and the woman began the night around 1 a.m. on April 6. The two were hanging out watching Netflix when they engaged in consensual oral sex. Around 3 a.m., Lancaster said that he wanted to take the woman back to her home but she didn't want to leave. He said that she became irate and started tossing her belongings around. 

Lancaster told police that the woman reached for the shotgun but that he was able to get it first. He said that he then pointed it at her. Lancaster told police that the woman told him to shoot her then reached for a knife and charged at him. In response, Lancaster said he used the shotgun to hit the woman, knocking her to the floor and causing her to drop the knife. He said that she charged at him a second time but he was able to push her out of his apartment and call his mother. He told police that he then cleaned up his apartment but was unable to locate the knife. 

Police said the woman's injuries included a gash on her head requiring staples to close, a fractured nose, and bloodied lips. When police told Lancaster about her injuries, he told them he did not know how she sustained them, according to the affidavit.

When police searched Lancaster's apartment, they said in the affidavit they found the shotgun loaded with three rounds. Lancaster is scheduled for a pretrial detention hearing on April 12. 

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Justin Garcia is a public safety reporter for the Las Cruces Sun-News. He can be reached at