#childabuse | Parents let 8-year-old son be sexually abused: prosecutors

Two New Mexico parents allegedly allowed grown men to sexually abuse their 8-year-old son — and callously told the boy to “deal with it,” according to a new report.

James Stewart and Teri Sanchez — who were already caught up in other high-profile child abuse cases — are facing new charges for giving “two grown men the unrestricted, unchecked access to their young son by giving these men a hotel key card, an unoccupied hotel room, and a limited amount of time with their son,” court documents obtained by the Albuquerque Journal on Monday show.

Teri Sanchez
Teri SanchezZUMAPRESS.com

The boy recently told multiple people about the alleged abuse, which he says occurred between August 2017 and April 2018, according to a motion for pretrial detention obtained by the paper.

The men inappropriately touched the boy — and his parents told him to simply “deal with it,” the motion alleges.

Both Stewart and Sanchez were indicted Sept. 12 on two counts of criminal sexual contact of a child under the age of 13, the paper reported.

The pair first got into trouble with the law in May 2018, when Stewart was busted for allegedly prostituting his daughter — who was 7 at the time — in exchange for “weed and pipes and other stuff,” according to the report.

He was hit with multiple charges, including human trafficking, child abuse, criminal sexual contact and promoting prostitution — but a judge declared a mistrial earlier this year due to prohibited testimony, and the case remains on appeal.

James Stewart
James StewartZUMAPRESS.com

Sanchez was also charged with child abuse and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and Stewart was hit with additional charges for allegedly using his children’s panhandling proceeds to buy drugs, according to the paper.

“As the defendants have previously used their children to panhandle for money to feed their drug habits, it is logically presumed that defendants similarly utilized (the boy) as a similar money-making opportunity,” prosecutors wrote in the motion. “(The child), of course, cannot know whether his parents chose to exchange him for drugs or drug money.”

Sanchez and Stewart, who are already being held in connection with the initial case, briefly appeared Monday morning for a detention hearing, according to the report.

Their attorneys did not respond to requests from the Journal about the latest charges against the pair.

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