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APD arrests woman for Thursday shooting death

Homicide arrest
January 19, 2024

ALBUQUERQUE – APD homicide detectives charged and arrested Roberta Martinez for the shooting death of a man during a domestic dispute on Thursday in Southeast Albuquerque.

Martinez, 29, told homicide detectives she was in a relationship with the victim, Joseph Alvarez, and they had a history of domestic violence. She said they were arguing and physically fighting while inside a vehicle on Thursday in the area of Palomas Dr. and Ross Ave., S.E. Martinez said both she and Alvarez were armed with firearms, and the fight resulted in her shooting Alvarez several times, killing him.

Through investigation, detectives determined Alvarez was exiting the driver’s side of the car with his firearm in his waistband and his hands free when Martinez fired several rounds. Two rounds struck Alvarez in the back and the back of the head.

While Martinez said she fired her weapon in self-defense, claiming Alvarez struck her with his handgun and was reaching for the gun when she shot him, her statements were inconsistent and did not match with an eyewitness account.

The witness who was in the area when the shooting occurred told detectives she saw Alvarez and Martinez appear to be arguing in the vehicle as it parked near where the witness was walking. The witness said she saw Alvarez exit the vehicle, face back toward the vehicle and resume yelling at Martinez. He had his hands in the air in a manner that the witness believed suggested frustration. The witness further specified Alvarez’s hands were “in the air, but not toward [Roberta]” and the witness did not observe any objects in Alvarez’s hands.

The witness said Martinez shot Alvarez about five times.