Aztec woman accused of child abuse, allegedly restrained kids with zip ties

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — An Aztec woman is alleged to have abused her children, including using zip ties to restrain their movement and shooting them with water-filled gel beads called Orbeez.

Tiffany Ryno, 26, faces two third-degree felony counts of abuse of a child and two fourth-degree felony counts of contributing to delinquency of a minor, according to the criminal complaint.

Ryno was still wanted by law enforcement with an active arrest warrant on April 22.

Court documents were filed on April 20 in Aztec Magistrate Court and she did not have legal representation.

The arrest warrant affidavit details the investigation by the San Juan County Sheriff's Office, which responded to a request for a welfare check on children at Ryno's residence earlier this month.

The reporting party told deputies that three children lived with Ryno and another woman, but Ryno only her two children by making them stand against a wall from the time they wake up until they go to bed.

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Ryno is accused of feeding them once a day, keeping them away from school, using zip ties to bind their arms and feet when they misbehaved, hitting them with a belt that has metal rings and shooting them with a splatter ball gun.

The woman is the mother of the third child, who was not harmed because of favoritism, the reporting party told deputies.

The Sheriff's Office and the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department went to the residence on April 7 to conduct a home visit and to contact Ryno.

After no one answered the door, the decision was made to obtain a search warrant to enter the home and check on the children.

Ryno eventually answered the door after repeated knocking by deputies. In an interview later, she waived her Miranda rights and denied the allegations.

Detectives obtained a search warrant for the home and found a splatter ball gun, a belt that matched the description given by the reporting party, zip ties and a bike lock.

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The children were removed from the home.

Anyone with information on Ryno's whereabouts is asked to call the Sheriff's Office Detective Tip Line at 505-333-7878 or call nonemergency dispatch at 505-334-6622.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at

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