Couple charged with criminal sexual contact of their bruised child

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Bernalillo County Sherriff’s Office detectives are looking into a disturbing case involving a mother, father, their child and accusations of those parents doing something that is far from how someone would normally show their love.

BCSO detectives say teachers at the 2-year-old’s day care center discovered his legs, bottom, face and back were covered in bruises.

Monica Lopez, the child’s mother, was arrested first and charged with child abuse and criminal sexual contact of a minor. After detectives questioned her, she said she sometimes bites her son out of anxiety.

When the father, Matthew Barraza, was questioned, he freely admitted to the abuse, giggled and said he couldn’t resist the baby’s bottom.

Lopez appeared before Judge Kenny Montoya on Tuesday, who denied her release and set a bond of $10,000 cash or surety.

However, detectives say the warrant for Barraza, signed by Judge Jacqueline Flores, had a bond of just $2,000. He is already out of jail, according to Sheriff’s Office officials.


This isn’t the first time Barraza has been accused of a crime.

He was previously arrested and charged in 2008 with the murder of an Albuquerque ice cream vendor.

Before that, when he was just 16, Barraza was charged with murdering someone at an Albuquerque inn. That charge was eventually dismissed.