Routt County Judge James Garrecht looked a little closer at Willy Najera's plea agreement Tuesday morning. Something did not seem right to the judge.
"This is a heck of a deal," he said.
Najera, 18, was charged last month with felony first-degree assault and menacing for allegedly helping brand several Hayden students with a heated coat hanger. But during his first court appearance Tuesday, Najera was handed a plea agreement that would have reduced the charges to minor in possession and consumption of alcohol.
After Garrecht questioned the agreement for Najera, Assis--tant District Attorney Kerry St. James said the plea agreement was a "typographical mistake."
The case was continued until 10:30 a.m. May 24.
Garrecht's catch prevented Najera from walking away with a slap on the wrist.
"Arguably, the case would have been over," Garrecht said.
Instead, Najera, who has denied branding anyone, still faces charges of felony first-degree assault and menacing.
Najera is accused of participating in an incident in Hayden in which as many as six juveniles were given brands with a heated coat hanger. Three Hayden juveniles also have been charged. Najera is the only adult accused in the incident.
The incident allegedly took place at a March 11 house party in Hayden. Police said about 15 juveniles were at the party, and alcohol was served.
Police have said that some of the boys at the party wanted to be branded by a hot coat hanger and that others were held down and branded against their will.
The three juveniles charged with participating in the brandings are due in court June 30.
One of the teens is charged with six counts of first-degree assault, another is charged with five counts of first-degree assault, and a third student is charged with two counts of first-degree assault.
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