Jury selection continues in child sex case

QCS Staff

Jury selection continued Tuesday for a convicted Curry County sex offender charged with the criminal sexual penetration of a Tucumcari child.

Kenneth Leon Mills, 30, is charged with two felony counts of criminal sexual penetration of a minor, kidnapping and aggravated burglary.

According to court documents, officers responded on Aug. 26, 2008, to a residence in South Tucumcari. A 9-year-old told her mother she had been taken outside to a dumpster where she was attacked.

“She told her mother that he told her not to scream or say anything to her mother because he would kill her mother. … He told her not to be scared and he called himself Uncle Santa Claus,” court records show.

The child’s mother said a man she knew “had entered the residence and then she said he had raped her daughter,” according to court documents.

Officials said Mills had absconded from Curry County and failed to register as a sex offender in Quay County. New Mexico’s sex offender registry reports Mills was convicted of criminal sexual penetration in 1998 in Curry County. He registered as a sex offender in September 2003.

Mills was arrested on Aug. 26, 2008, and he entered a plea of not guilty the next day in Quay County Magistrate Court.

Mills has been held in the Quay County Detention Center. His bail is $250,000.