Stabbing Suspect Has Prior Arrests

By Maire O’Neill
Los Alamos Daily Post
maire@ladailypost.com

Andrea Rivera, 30, will remain in the Los Alamos Detention Center until a Nov. 14 hearing to determine whether she will be held without bond pending trial. She has been charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon with great bodily injury, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and tampering with evidence.

The charges relate to an incident Friday evening, Nov. 3, at an apartment at 3301 Canyon Road in which Rivera is accused of using a kitchen knife to stab Cory Kerschner several times in the chest area and cause a large laceration to his stomach. Kerschner remains hospitalized in critical condition. Rivera also is accused of cutting the thumb of her sister, Sara Cooper with a kitchen knife.

An expedited motion for pretrial detention filed in First Judicial District Court Monday by Deputy District Attorney Michael A. Nunez states that Cooper’s statement says Kerschner was “lying on the floor in front of the door with his intestines outside his body”. The motion states that Cooper said she had to “put his guts back in”, that she observed Rivera with a small knife in her hands and blood on her hands.

Nunez believes Rivera is a danger to the witness/victims as well as the entire community and should be kept in jail pending her preliminary hearing. The Nov. 14 hearing will go before Judge T. Glenn Ellington in Santa Fe.

Magistrate Court documents filed by Los Alamos Police Det. Joey Robinson contain details of his interviews with both Cooper and Rivera. Cooper told Robinson that she and Kerschner were at the apartment when Rivera showed up and asked Cooper to go and get Jerry Bobo, a friend of hers, which she did. Cooper said all four were in the apartment for a while, that Bobo and Rivera left and Rivera returned at about 9:15 p.m.

Cooper told Robinson that without provocation, Rivera became angry with her and started to yell at her, adding that it is a common occurrence for Rivera to become aggressive and combative with her whenever she has anything to drink. Cooper said that when Rivera got angry, Kerschner told Cooper to go into the master bedroom and to shut and lock the door. She said that this is common when Rivera is having an anger episode and that typically Kerschner is able to calm Rivera down.

Cooper said that she heard Rivera and Kerschner talking and that when things went silent she opened the door and stepped out to see Rivera in the kitchen with a small knife and with blood on her hands. She said when Rivera saw her, she chased her to the bedroom door, but Cooper was unable to get the door locked so Rivera tried to stab her. She said that as she tried to remove the knife from Rivera’s hand, she received the laceration on her thumb.

From inside the bedroom, Cooper said she could hear “a commotion like fighting” with Kerschner and Rivera yelling at one another. She said things went quiet again and she heard the front door slam. When she exited the bedroom, she found Kerschner injured on the floor and that Rivera had left. She yelled for help at which time a neighbor came and called LAPD Dispatch.

Police did not locate Rivera until Saturday morning when she was taken into custody at the Gold Street Apartments. During a lengthy interview with Det. Robinson, Rivera admitted to stabbing Kerschner twice in the abdomen but said she did not remember cutting Cooper. She also admitted to going to Bobo’s home where she decided to change clothes and said she threw her clothes in a dumpster.

Rivera allegedly told Robinson several times during the interview that she knew she was going to prison for life and that she can’t believe she hurt someone she loves. She told him that when she went to Bobo’s residence she was certain Kerschner was dead and that she couldn’t believe she had done what she did.

Rivera has had several brushes with the law in Los Alamos, which have landed her in Los Alamos Municipal and Magistrate Courts.

On Sept. 7, she pleaded guilty before Municipal Judge Alan Kirk to charges of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. In that case, LAPD Cpl. Jemuel Montoya responded Sept. 1 to a White Rock home and found Rivera “yelling and screaming and attempting to make her way to the reporting party who stated she wanted Rivera removed from the house”. Montoya’s report indicated that he attempted to have Rivera turn around and leave but that she was argumentative and became aggressive toward him. He was eventually able to gain control of Rivera and place her in handcuffs. His report states that she was “belligerent, cussing and threatening”, and disobeying all commands from him as he attempted to remove her from the residence and place her in his patrol car.

Rivera tried to hold herself outside the patrol car by placing her foot in the door and hooking her feet on the door, according to the report. She then attempted to wedge herself on the floor board between the seats while yelling at Montoya that she would not go to jail.

Montoya placed Rivera in the back of the patrol car and buckled her in then he returned to speak to the reporting party. When he returned to his patrol car, he found Rivera unbuckled and sitting behind the driver’s seat. While being transported to the Los Alamos Detention Center, Montoya said Rivera cursed, insulted and threatened him. He said she told him she was under the influence of alcohol and had smoked marijuana.

Montoya described Rivera as highly aggressive and threatening on arrival at the Los Alamos Detention Center, and reported that she stated she was going to kick him in the genitals if she got the chance and that she would find him when she got out of incarceration.

Rivera was again arrested the evening of Sept. 4 on a Municipal Court warrant. An incident report by Cpl. Gabriel Nieto indicates that he was dispatched to a residence where he made contact with Rivera who was outside with bags of clothes and told him she was getting her belongings from the home. Nieto said the reporting party stated that when she got home from work she found Rivera intoxicated in her home and wanted her “trespassed from her residence”.

Nieto said LAPD Dispatch notified him over the radio that Judge Kirk wanted Rivera placed under arrest and that he would issue a warrant the next morning. Nieto’s report said the Detention Center spoke with Judge Kirk who requested a telephonic hold on Rivera.

In that case, Judge Kirk sentenced Rivera Sept. 7 to 90 days in jail on the resisting arrest charge as well as $100 suspended fine and supervised probation for one year. On the disorderly conduct charge he ordered a $60 fee paid within 90 days and on a contempt of court charge for a probation violation he ordered payment of a $60 fee, $100 suspended fine and $100 bench warrant fee.

On Oct. 17, Judge Kirk held a status hearing and amended his judgement and sentencing by suspending 52 of the 90 days originally imposed and Rivera was released from custody. Judge Kirk declined to comment on the record about this issue.

In another Municipal Court case, Rivera was arrested Feb. 7 after being found lying on the ground at Caballo Peak apartments. There was a no trespass order in effect at the time, but Rivera allegedly got into a fight with her sister and said she fell on the ground but was not sure if she fell inside or outside the apartment. She was given a 90-day deferred sentence, placed on unsupervised probation and given 20 hours of community service.

In Espanola Magistrate Court in June, charges of battery, evading a police officer and disturbing the peace were filed against Rivera but later dismissed by Judge Alexandra Naranjo. In April, Rivera was charged in Los Alamos Magistrate Court with unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, but those charges were later dismissed by Deputy DA Nunez stating he was unable to prosecute.

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