Murder case moves to district court

Robert Martinez

ALAMOSA — After about five hours of testimony and the presentation of documents, videos and photographs, Alamosa County Judge Daniel Walzl on Friday bound over to district court numerous felony charges including first-degree murder against Robert Martinez, 29, for the August 9, 2018 death of Mathias Fritz, 40, Alamosa.

Martinez, who is in custody without bond, will have his first appearance in district court before Judge Michael Gonzales on April 17.

Judge Walzl also dismissed a traffic offense against Martinez and scheduled a March 4 preliminary hearing on a case related to the murder case in which Martinez is charged with shooting co-defendant Shawndon McVey, 25, allegedly because McVey wanted to go to the police about the Fritz murder. McVey survived. McVey has alleged that Martinez was the one who shot Fritz to death and shot Fritz’s girlfriend, Alma Salazar, who survived and testified on Friday.

Four people are currently facing murder and related charges in connection with Fritz’s death including Martinez, McVey, Shem Brown, 26, and Phillip Medina, 36, who was arrested after the first three were apprehended and charged. Medina is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated robbery, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and other charges, which are similar to the other three defendants in the case.

All four remain in custody.

Testimony on Friday created a picture of what occurred on August 9, 2018, at Fritz’s apartment in East Alamosa, where allegedly McVey, Brown and Martinez tied Fritz and Salazar up with zip ties, robbed Fritz of cash and drugs and Martinez allegedly hit Fritz multiple times with a wrench and then shot him and Salazar. Medina had also been at the apartment earlier for dinner.

Witnesses testifying during the hearing on Friday besides Salazar were Alamosa County Sheriff Deputy Joshua Baier, Colorado Bureau of Investigation Agent Kevin Torres, Alamosa Police Corporal Ivan Garcia, Dr. Travis Danielsen forensic pathologist who performed Fritz’s autopsy and testified that even if Fritz had not been shot, he could have died from his multiple and severe blunt force injuries, and Alamosa County Detective Sergeant Sam Coffman, lead investigator in this case.

A more complete account of Friday’s hearing will be shared in Tuesday’s Courier.

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