Cricelio Arteaga

Cricelio Arteaga

An Idaho Falls man was arrested Wednesday after he admitted to hitting a caretaker multiple times at a group home.

According to the probable cause affidavit, the caretaker at the home for adults with disabilities had confronted a resident named Cricelio Arteaga, 20, after he ate pizza belonging to another resident at the group home.

The victim told Idaho Falls Police Department officers Arteaga attacked her immediately after she confronted him about the pizza. He reportedly punched her multiple times in the head and knocked her to the ground. Arteaga was on top of the victim and continued to hit her.

The victim said she was in a fetal position and begged Arteaga to stop. He reportedly ignored her and continued to hit her.

When the victim grabbed her phone to call police, Arteaga told her he would stop and let her go if she didn’t call 911. The victim put her phone down, which was already connected to 911, but Arteaga continued to hit her.

Arteaga slammed the victim’s head into the front door as she tried to leave the house. He then threw her out of the house and onto the porch, and began kicking her in the face, ribs and stomach.

The beating stopped when a neighbor intervened. The neighbor said she confronted Arteaga, and that he turned his attention toward her. Arteaga reportedly kicked and punched the neighbor before returning to the victim.

The neighbor again intervened and stopped Arteaga as he was slamming the victim’s head into a screen door.

Police arrived and found several people outside the house, including the victim, whose head was bleeding. Police saw blood on the victim’s legs and on the ground next to her.

The officers found Arteaga lying on the ground in the house near the entrance. He agreed to speak to police and admitted to hurting the victim, punching her and throwing her into a wall. He said he attacked her because he was mad when she confronted him about the pizza.

Police arrested Arteaga and handcuffed him. The affidavit describes him as behaving cooperatively until the officers brought him outside. He then reportedly started screaming and trying to pull away from the officers.

Arteaga reportedly bit one of the officers on the arm while struggling, leaving a red mark.

Police forced Arteaga to the ground, and he began banging his head against the cement. A worker at the group home placed a pillow under his head to stop him from injuring himself. Arteaga calmed down and was taken to jail.

Arteaga was charged with aggravated battery causing great bodily harm, punishable with up to 15 years in prison, and assault or battery upon certain personnel, punishable with up to five years in prison. He was also charged with misdemeanor battery.

The incident is not the first time Arteaga has been arrested for violence. In December he reportedly attacked a roommate, also over a dispute about food. The case was dismissed in March. The Bonneville County Prosecutor’s Office did not return a call asking about the dismissal as of Friday.

Arteaga’s bond was set at $25,000 and a no-contact order was issued between him and the victim. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Aug. 12 in the Bonneville County Courthouse.