Log In

Reset Password
News Education Local News Nation & World New Mexico

Man receives deferred judgment in child sex sting case

Defendant didn’t follow through with solicitation

One of several men arrested last spring during a child predator sex sting in Durango received a four-year deferred judgment Monday with a suspended 45-day jail sentence.

Christopher Rindfleisch, 21, was charged with one count of soliciting for child prostitution, a Class 3 felony, and one count of attempted unlawful sexual contact, a Class 2 misdemeanor. He pleaded guilty in May to soliciting child prostitution, a felony, and sexual contact, a misdemeanor.

Last spring, Durango police posted advertisements on public websites for sex with girls ages 11 and 14. Rindfleisch was one of six men suspected of trying to pay for sex with the minors.

“A meeting was set up at Albertsons, but he (Rindfleisch) didn’t go, realizing, in part, that he shouldn’t be doing this,” said Joel Fry, the defendant’s lawyer. “There was no victim here other than society.”

Fry also noted that substance abuse played a role in the incident, and asked 6th Judicial District Court Judge Suzanne Carlson not to impose the recommended 45-day jail sentence.

Carlson decided to suspend the jail sentence while retaining authority to impose jail time if necessary, because of a recent, separate incident that led to Rindfleisch’s arrest.

The judge noted that Rindfleisch went to a local movie theater with a woman his age, a violation of his bond agreement, because children might be present at the theater.

“Thankfully, you didn’t follow through,” Carlson told Rindfleisch, referring to the initial incident that led to his charges.

“And going to the movie theater probably didn’t feel like a big deal, but you’ll have lots of requirements (under probation) that you’ll need to follow.”

The deferred judgment means that Rindfleisch’s record will be clean after four years, provided he does not violate the conditions of his probation.

“I’m here because of poor judgment,” Rindfleisch told the court. “I was under the influence while I was on the internet. If I wasn’t (under the influence), I wouldn’t be here. I’m sorry for my actions, and I’ve learned from my mistakes. It will never happen again.”

Others arrested include Rory Schmier, 47, of La Plata County; Jason Yazzie Chee, 39, of Bloomfield; Harold Marshall, 45, of Farmington; Charles Earhart Watts, 38, of Durango; and Urunov Timur, 30, residence unknown.

Their cases are making their way through the courts; Watts is due in court Wednesday for an arraignment.


Oct 28, 2016
Durango man pleads guilty in child sex sting
Jun 28, 2016
Charges advance against sex-sting suspect
Jun 1, 2016
One of six arrested pleads guilty in child sex sting
May 16, 2016
Formal charges filed against men arrested in child sex sting
May 5, 2016
More suspects arrested in child sex sting
Apr 29, 2016
Three Four Corners men arrested in child sex sting

Reader Comments