Belen father indicted on child abuse, kidnapping charges

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A Belen man was indicted last week by a Valencia County grand jury on charges he allegedly kidnapped and beat his 13-year-old daughter.

Edward Kelly, 38, is charged with two counts of third-degree child abuse and one count of first-degree kidnapping.

Kelly is being held on a no-bond hold in the Valencia County Detention Center after a bench warrant was issued for his arrest on Thursday following his indictment.

According to a criminal complaint, which was filed in Magistrate Court in Belen, Kelly's daughter called police from Dollar General in Belen on Feb. 22, saying she had just been beat up by her father. When Belen Police Lt. Robert Miller arrived at the store, he spoke with the girl, who he described as "visibly upset and shaken."

Miller wrote in the complaint the girl told him her father began to "attack her, strangle her and bang her head against the wall" as well as threatening to kill her earlier that day.

She told the lieutenant that after the threats, she ran to the store and called police.

The girl told the officer that her stepmother had left her father, who, she says, had been abused as well.

It was while he was talking to the girl that Miller noticed the girl's jacket was exposing her upper chest, and noticed there was a fresh red scratch mark.

The girl said she was unsure how she got the scratch, but did say that her father had grabbed her jacket, "squeezing it very tight and rough around her neck."

According to the complaint, the 13-year-old told Miller that her father twisted her arms behind her back and grabbed onto her neck and began to squeeze and threw her up against a door frame, not letting her go.

She also told police that Kelly grabbed her under her jaw bone and started pressing her head backwards and forwards, slamming her head on the wall, all the time making threats he was going to kill her, the complaint said.

Miller wrote in the complaint that he did see redness and minor swelling under the girl's jawbone and redness on her throat.

When the lieutenant went to the man's house, he found Kelly intoxicated.

"Mr. Kelly was very disoriented and confused, and his emotions were everywhere," Miller wrote in the complaint. "He would go from mad, to sad to very calm in a matter of seconds."

According to the complaint, Kelly explained that his wife had just left him, and that his "emotions (were) getting the best of him."

When questioned at the Belen Police Department, Kelly told Miller he was mad at his daughter for calling the police, and said, "I (Miller) should listen to what was exposed by his daughter and just slap him on the wrist."

Kelly later told the lieutenant he would deny anything that happened, blaming his daughter for his wife leaving and that he made his teenage daughter drink with him.

The girl then told Miller that her father made her drink peppermint Smirnoff, and he threatened that if she didn't, he would hurt her, the complaint said.

The girl claimed that when she tried to get away from her father, he wouldn't let her go, making "threats to her life," such as "ripping her eyes out, taking her pinkie toe off and stuffing it down her throat and slice her throat from the inside."

According to the girl's statement to police, after she was beaten, Kelly told his daughter that she was a "disappointment and (an) idiot and told her to leave."


-- Email the author at cgarcia@news-bulletin.com.