Assault, harassment trial begins: Man allegedly left dozens of profane messages on victim’s voicemail
February 14, 2018
EAGLE — An assault and harassment trial involving a couple began, ironically, on Valentine's Day.
"Today may be Valentine's Day, but this is not a love story. It's a story about a romance that went horribly wrong," Prosecutor Cathleen Noone said in her opening statement Wednesday afternoon, Feb. 14.
Martin Arroyo, who lives in Basalt, is acting as his own attorney. He is charged with felony assault, harassment and stalking a woman who works in the medical industry, caring for people with terminal diseases.
Arroyo's opening statement was succinct. He insisted that prosecutors would not be able to prove he was stalking the woman and then sat down, alone, at the defendant's table.
Then Noone began playing voice messages for the 13 jurors — 12 jurors and one alternate, seven men and six women — that police investigators say Arroyo left on the woman's voicemail.
"Tomorrow, everyone is going to know that you paid me to f— you," one voicemail said.
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Among other things, Arroyo is accused of accosting the woman in a gym where they both worked out, yanking the back of her head so hard that it ripped some of her hair out in his hand.
"I'm going rip the rest of your f—ing hair out, bitch," another voicemail said.
Between November 2016 and January 2017, Arroyo allegedly left her dozens of voicemails after they broke up, generally punctuated with invective calling her a "whore," as well as text messages, according to testimony.
She gave those voicemails and text messages to the Basalt Police Department.
The woman testified that she's a Christian and goes to church regularly. Her son sings in the choir. She works out six to seven days a week — very early in the morning.
Regarding church, Arroyo allegedly told her he would convince people in the church she was a "f—ing whore." Another voicemail stated, "You think you outsmarted me? You don't think I'm going to get to you? You show up at that gym … I'm going to go after your kid."
Then Arroyo allegedly threatened in a voicemail that he would take a bat to the church pastor.
He lived in a storage unit
They met in the gym, dated six months, broke up, dated for another month that fall and broke up for good.
When they went out, she paid for most of their expenses. She also drove; he did not have his own transportation. He lived in a storage unit, police records said.
"Don't let the storage unit fool you. I f—ed you over and you don't even know it yet," another voicemail stated.
She said she loved him, and he appeared to love her, too, until the haranguing and abuse began, according to police records.
The whole thing started to explode when, on a Friday, she told him she needed some time to herself after a week of working with the dying. He flew into a rage laced with name calling and threats and accused her of seeing someone else.
"It was like venom came out of his mouth," she said.
When Basalt Police arrested Arroyo outside a Basalt restaurant, Arroyo told officers to, "just put the f—ing handcuffs on." Basalt Police Officer Travis Newcomb did.
There was not enough time during Wednesday's open proceedings for Arroyo to cross examine the witness. The trial is scheduled to continue through Friday, Feb. 16.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
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