Habitat for Humanity home used to post bond for murder suspect

Posted: December 27, 2010 in Uncategorized
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Russell Harris (Courtesy Santa Fe County Jail)

Russell Harris, awaiting trial on an open count of murder of 24-year-old Julian Cordova, posted a $50,000 property bond on Monday and is out of jail, according to court documents.

Interestingly enough, the person who posted the property bond for him, using his Tierra Contenta home, actually got the home in 2002 through the Habitat for Humanity program.

Now the man who put up his home (I won’t name him here but his information is public record in Harris’ court file) for the bond does own enough equity in the home to put it up for the bond and can do with that what he chooses. But I can’t imagine this was what the Habitat for Humanity folks ever thought these homes would be used for.

Nothing illegal here. The guy had to meet at the standard qualifications to own the home (500-plus hours of “sweat equity” in the building the home and others in the program, at least a 1 percent down payment and keep up with monthly payments… all according to our 2002 article about him receiving the home). I just found it interesting a home obtained through this great charitable organization that helps low-income families with home ownership is now being put up for a murder suspect’s bond.

I figured I’d share that tid bit here on the blog.

As for Harris, some of the conditions of his release include he can not be in Santa Fe County except for court appearances, he will be on GPS electronic monitoring, he will be drug tested multiple times a week and he can leave home for up to 10 hours a day for work.

I tried calling Harris’ defense attorney — Ray Twohig of Albuquerque — for comment, but messages left at his law firm there weren’t returned. That isn’t anything new, unfortunately. The New Mexican apparently isn’t on Twohig’s list of priority return calls as I’ve called in the past and never heard back. Oh well, I suppose I will live.

Harris’ trial won’t come before March.

Harris was charged in September for shooting and killing Cordova on Sept. 26 after a fight that began with a tiff between Harris and Cordova’s older brother, Marcos Cordova, who has two children with Harris’ girlfriend. Marcos Cordova was trying to obtain custody of the kids at the time of the September shooting.

A couple hours after police say Harris shot Cordova, a second shooting in the Las Acequias subdivision in southwest Santa Fe occurred and police believe it was a retaliation shooting, although nobody has been charged in connection with that incident and it isn’t clear whether Harris was even there at the time.

Here are some articles related to the case:


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