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Foster parents’ son sexually assaulted teenager, possibly others, deputies say

Servando Barriga, 21 (BCSO)

CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect what Barriga told deputies about past incidents.

The biological son of two foster parents is facing charges after deputies say he raped a teenager in late December, and sexually assaulted at least one other foster child in the past,¬†at a southwest Albuquerque foster home, according to a Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman.

Deputy Felicia Maggard said Servando Barriga, 21, was arrested by deputies and charged with criminal sexual penetration of a minor and false imprisonment.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Metropolitan Court, deputies responded to a foster home on the 7000 block of Jaime SW Dec. 29 after a 17-year-old texted her permanent foster parents that she was “hurting” and “afraid” after Barriga raped her that morning.

Deputies say she was only staying at that foster home for a week while her permanent foster parents were out of town.

The teenager told detectives Barriga snuck into her bedroom after midnight and raped her.

She told deputies that afterward, Barriga threw the evidence into a trash can and told her he “hopes he does not get caught” before leaving.

During questioning, Barriga told detectives the girl told him to come to her room “when he wanted to.”

He told detectives he went in to “conversate” but “things went further from there,” eventually admitting to having intercourse with her.

Barriga told detectives he had sexual contact with at least one other foster child in the past.

Barriga’s parents, who run the foster home, told detectives there are three other foster children living at the home and all the bedroom doors have alarms that are turned on at night.

Both parents told detectives the alarms were set the night of the incident but that Barriga “knew how to turn them off.”

Maggard said Barriga has “continuously” lived in the facility, which has been in operation for twenty years.

“Detectives have obtained information of other potential victims,” she said. Barriga has “potentially” had contact with “numerous” other foster children in the facility.

A spokesman for CYFD could not be reached for comment.

On Jan. 3, a judge denied a motion to keep Barriga in jail and he was released on his own recognizance, according to court documents.

“The State’s assertion that Mr. Barriga is a predator is not supported by any evidence,” the motion states, accusing the prosecution of relying “solely” on the allegations in the complaint, while calling those allegations “untestable” and “hearsay.”

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