District Attorney Will Furse and Montezuma County Judge JenniLynn Lawrence agreed Wednesday that the series of cases against Marque Lopez stem from substance addiction.
The 26-year-old Montezuma County resident on Wednesday pleaded guilty to three counts and was sentenced to 12 months probation in two drug cases and two traffic cases, on the condition that she follow all treatment recommendations.
Those four cases are now closed. Lopez also faces two animal-control cases, including one that alleges her dog attacked a neighbor’s sheep.
Lawrence said that if Lopez does not overcome her addiction, it will follow her the rest of her life.
Lopez pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of a schedule I or II controlled substance — which Furse reduced from a Class 4 drug felony to a Class 2 drug misdemeanor — and failure to show proof of insurance in a December drug case. She also pleaded guilty to careless driving in one of two traffic cases.
Furse dismissed charges of possession of a schedule III, IV or V controlled substance, failure to display insurance and expired license plates in the December 2018 drug case.
A separate February 2018 drug possession case for which Lawrence put Lopez on a 12-month diversion in May 2018 was dismissed, including charges of possessing a schedule I or II controlled substance and possessing drug paraphernalia.
Lopez also was on diversion in a 2018 traffic case for careless driving. That diversion was revoked Wednesday with her guilty plea. A separate charge of no proof of insurance was also dismissed in the plea deal.
“We believe that formal, supervised probation is the only way to ensure Ms. Lopez’s rehabilitation for drug addiction — something that is beyond the capabilities of our current Diversion program,” Furse wrote in an email to The Journal.
On March 12, Lopez is expected to enter a plea in two active cases regarding a pit bull she owns.
She faces misdemeanor charges of possessing a dog that caused bodily injury to a person or property and owning a dangerous dog that inflicts bodily injury upon a person or domestic animal relating related to a December 2018 incident that injured one of her neighbor’s sheep.
A few days after that alleged attack, her neighbors again reported that the dog was loose. It did not cause injury at that time, but her neighbors allege her dog killed one sheep and ripped the lower jaw off another in a Nov. 5 attack for which Lopez has not been charged. They said each sheep is worth $400, according to a Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office incident report.
Lopez could face a $1,000 fine or 12 months in prison for each time a dog attacked a person or property, according to a Montezuma County resolution and Colorado Revised Statutes.