CHEYENNE – A man who strangled his girlfriend when she wouldn’t hug or kiss him was sentenced Monday in Laramie County District Court to probation and time already served in jail.

Christopher Cortez, 25, was charged with applying pressure on the throat or neck, domestic battery and possession of a controlled substance.

Per his plea agreement, the second count of domestic battery was dismissed by the state at sentencing. Cortez pleaded no contest to the strangulation charge and guilty to the controlled substance charge.

District Judge Thomas Campbell sentenced Cortez to three to four years imprisonment suspended for three years of supervised probation for the strangulation charge. He was sentenced to 12 days imprisonment for the controlled substance charge, and he received credit for time already served.

According to court documents, on Oct. 13, 2018, Cheyenne Police responded to a call of a physical domestic. When they arrived on scene, the victim told officers her boyfriend of eight years, Cortez, became angry with her when she wouldn’t kiss or hug him.

Cortex then wrapped his arms around her and squeezed hard enough so that she couldn’t breathe. When the victim tried to get away, he grabbed her neck and pinned her against the wall. The victim stated she blacked out and was in fear for her life.

When officers took Cortez to the Laramie County jail, he turned over a misdemeanor amount of heroin to officers before entering the jail.

During his sentencing, Cortez’s attorney read two letters attesting to his character. The first was from a rehabilitation facility, AspenRidge Recovery, where Cortez received treatment for his mental illness and drug abuse, and the second from a therapist. Both letter writers said they thought Cortez successfully completed the treatment and was on the right track.

Cortez’s attorney even said he plans to become a certified addiction counselor due to his experience, and the rehabilitation facility was offering him employment.

Campbell told Cortez that domestic violence is extremely serious, and in some cases people get killed. Kids, even pets, get hurt in the process, as well. But the judge told Cortez he wishes him well and hopes it all works out for him.


A man accused of driving under the influence and getting into a car crash had his bond revoked Monday afternoon in Laramie County District Court.

Richard Wright, 18, is charged with DUI with serious bodily injury. He was previously out on bond, but was arrested for failing to comply with his bond conditions. Wright denies the bond revocation accusations.

Campbell reset his bond at $10,000 cash.

At the revocation hearing, District Attorney Leigh Anne Manlove pointed out Wright was wearing a black-and-white striped jail uniform, which indicated he had a disciplinary sanction in the jail.

According to court documents:

On Nov. 26, 2018, Cheyenne Police responded to a crash with injuries at North College Drive and East Pershing Boulevard.

Witnesses said they saw Wright go through a red light at a high rate of speed and hit the victims car on the driver’s side. The victim was unconscious and had to be extracted from the car by first-responders.

Officers on the scene noted Wright’s speech was slurred and could smell alcohol coming from him. A marijuana pipe was also found in Wright’s car.

The victim had to be flown to Swedish Medical Center in Denver due to the severity of their injuries.

Isabella Alves is the Wyoming Tribune Eagle’s criminal justice reporter. She can be reached at ialves@wyomingnews.com or 307-633-3128. Follow her on Twitter @IsabellaAlves96.

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