DeLuna pleads not guilty in arson case


ALAMOSA — Attorney James Dostal entered not guilty pleas and requested another continuance to work out a resolution in the cases of his client Nazzreth DeLuna, 30, on Tuesday.

Among other charges, DeLuna is charged with attempted first-degree murder and arson in connection with a fire last September that rendered an Alamosa residence uninhabitable.

Dostal told District Judge Michael Gonzales on Tuesday that he was very close to a resolution and asked for more time to work out an agreement. In the meantime, he entered not guilty pleas on behalf of DeLuna.

Judge Gonzales said if something is not worked out by the next court date, he would set DeLuna’s cases for trial. The judge rescheduled DeLuna’s cases for August 21.

Appearing on behalf of the prosecution on Tuesday was District Attorney Crista Newmyer-Olsen.

DeLuna had been charged with theft, 3rd degree assault, criminal attempted 1st degree murder, 1st degree burglary, 1st degree arson, reckless endangerment, crimes against an at-risk adult and criminal mischief following a September 18, 2017 fire on south Bell Avenue in Alamosa.

The residence was occupied at the time DeLuna allegedly started the fire. DeLuna allegedly used an accelerant and started a fire in the back of the residence and fled before officers arrived. After the occupants were moved to safety, an explosion occurred, believed to have been ignited by an oxygen bottle. The explosion and ensuing fire rendered the residence unlivable. DeLuna was arrested a couple of days later in Alamosa and has remained in custody since that time.

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