A 36-year-old Rio Rancho man could face over 5 years in prison after getting into a fight with his parents. 

On May 19, Rio Rancho police officers were dispatched to the 1500 block of 37th Street in reference to a domestic violence incident. 

A woman called “frantically stating” she needed officers right away because her brother, Christopher Ortega, had allegedly attacked her and their parents, according to a criminal complaint. 

The altercation 

Earlier that day, Ortega asked his mom if a friend could come over but she told him no because he had just got out of alcohol rehab and she had no idea who this friend was. She also did not trust his friends. 

The suspect then became “extremely angry” and started yelling at his sister and mom, saying they were all against him and they didn’t care about him. Ortega even said his mom was a terrible mother. 

Ortega’s dad, who later said he thought Ortega was acting strange that day and believed he had been drinking, was minding his business when he heard the yelling. 

He stepped inside the bedroom and told Ortega to stop being disrespectful toward his mother. The suspect then pushed his sister out of the way, grabbed his father’s throat and slammed him into a wall near the television, the complaint states. 

The sister and mother tried to help the father when Ortega allegedly hit his sister twice on the head then choked his mother. He let his mother go briefly before pinning his forearm against her neck. 

The father tried to pull Ortega off his wife, but was unsuccessful. He then attempted to put the suspect in a chokehold, but that effort also failed.  

The mother later told officers she did not remember what happened after being choked. It is unknown if she lost consciousness during the altercation.  

When officers arrived, they saw the mother had redness around her neck along with a scratch in an unidentified location. She was also coughing heavily. The father was holding his neck and “was clearly in pain,” the complaint states. 

It is unknown if anyone went to the hospital. 

Ortega is being accused of two counts of aggravated battery against a household member (great bodily harm) and battery. 

He gave no plea at his initial appearance on May 25. 

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for 1 p.m. June 22. 

If convicted, Ortega could face up to 6-1/2 years in prison and pay a $10,500 fine.