A former Española-area school employee faces 21 years in prison and $45,000 in fines after his arraignment Monday on charges he had sex with a 17-year-old student.
Erik “Memo” Armstrong, 35, a former information-technology technician who lived on the campus of Española’s McCurdy School, was arraigned on Monday on charges stemming from a March 4 indictment on four fourth-degree felony counts of criminal sexual penetration by school personnel and five third-degree felony counts of sexual exploitation of children.
School officials told state police Armstrong was let go from his job at McCurdy School on Aug. 30 due to “budgetary issues,” according to a warrant for his arrest filed in September. Coincidentally, Aug. 30 was the first time Armstrong and the student had sex, according to his reported confession to state police.
Armstrong, who according to court records also admitted to police to having nude pictures of the student on his computer, was allowed to remain out of jail Monday on a $5,000 cash bond his father posted for him in September through Santa Fe County Magistrate Court. Police reports indicate Armstrong and the girl had a relationship that evolved from kissing to sex over a long period of time and started when she was 16.
A trial date for Armstrong was not set at Monday’s hearing. Assistant District Attorney Cynthia Hill strongly opposed any condition that allowed Armstrong to have contact with the alleged victim while he awaits trial.