Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The city of Albuquerque has agreed to pay $245,000 to a University of New Mexico law student who was kneed in the groin by a police officer.

The city has settled with Jeremy Martin, who was forced to undergo emergency surgery to remove a testicle after the officer kneed him during an April 2014 traffic stop.

Martin's attorney says his client is satisfied with the settlement, though he obviously wishes the incident had never occurred.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy says it's committed to cleaning up legacy waste left behind at Los Alamos National Laboratory by decades of bomb making and related nuclear research.

A department spokesman reiterated the commitment Wednesday after New Mexico regulators unveiled a new proposal for addressing hazardous waste and contamination in and around the northern New Mexico lab.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union is challenging a regulation that prohibits New Mexico teachers from disparaging standardized tests.

The lawsuit against the New Mexico Public Education Department was filed Wednesday in Santa Fe District Court on behalf of five public school teachers and a parent.

The ACLU says the regulation restricts free speech and violates constitutional rights to due process and a public education.

RUIDOSO, N.M. (AP) — Firefighters in Ruidoso are mopping up a wildfire on the outskirts of the southern New Mexico mountain village.

Village spokeswoman Kerry Gladden says firefighters kept the 125-acre fire within fire lines overnight and she says Wednesday is being devoted to extinguishing any remaining hotspots, particularly near Ruidoso High School.

The high school and the middle school are along a road near the fire and remain closed. However, classes resumed Wednesday for the school system's elementary and primary schools.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico officials plan to use a pesticide to help re-establish a native Gila trout population, but some scientists say the chemical could pose health risks for humans and other species.

The New Mexico Game and Fish Department says the pesticide, rotenone, has been safely used to kill invasive fish species for years. The department hopes to use rotenone to kill off remaining populations of rainbow and brown trout in parts of Whitewater Creek and its tributaries, giving the threatened Gila trout a better chance of survival.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State University police in Las Cruces say a motorcyclist was killed when his bike collided with two oncoming vehicles after running a red light and then crossing a street's center line.

University police say the incident occurred Tuesday night, beginning when an officer saw the motorcycle run a red light and then accelerate to a high rate of speed while eastbound on University Avenue.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Construction on the Albuquerque Rapid Transit system will be delayed for two months to allow time for requested design changes.

Construction on the bus system is now scheduled to start in late July. Project spokeswoman Joanie Griffin says ART still hopes to finish construction by next fall.

The city is planning to add an additional station to the transit system at a cost of about $400,000 and address other changes suggested in public meetings.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — One decisive signature on a campaign petition is allowing a Republican war veteran to challenge incumbent Democrat Rep. Matthew McQueen of Galisteo in fall elections.

Jeremy Tremko of Moriarty announced Tuesday that a district judge in Santa Fe has validated just enough petition signatures for him to run unopposed for the Republican nomination. Rep. McQueen's district stretches from the outskirts of Santa Fe south across portions of Bernalillo, Torrance and Valencia counties.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A health care company that tried to root out fraud in New Mexico's Medicaid program now faces three lawsuits claiming that it was committing Medicaid fraud itself.

Lawsuits filed against OptumHealth Inc. say the company mishandled Medicaid payments to mental health providers.

In one lawsuit, a former OptumHealth employee claims she was fired for reporting concerns about possible Medicaid fraud.

OptumHealth spokeswoman Lauren Mihajlov says the company rejects the allegations in the lawsuits.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas has joined a coalition of 17 state attorneys general to combat global warming by examining whether fossil fuel companies misled investors or the public on the impact of their business.

State Deputy Attorney General Tania Maestas met Tuesday in New York with other prosecutors in the coalition. New Mexico depends heavily on the oil and natural gas industries to fund government operations and endowments.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez and other officials are headed to Southern California to woo business leaders. Martinez, state Economic Development Secretary Jon Barela and officials from Albuquerque and Rio Rancho will be in California through Wednesday. The governor's office says they'll be meeting with business executives and site selectors to talk about New Mexico's manufacturing and business competiveness. The governor made a similar trip to the San Francisco area last year.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Health officials say flu activity is widespread around the state and is expected to continue for several more weeks. The New Mexico Department of Health says elevated flu activity started a bit later than in the previous three seasons but that flu-related hospitalizations and deaths have increased in recent weeks. The department also says the flu vaccine for this season appears to be a good match with strains that are circulating. New Mexico has identified 115 influenza and pneumonia-related deaths this flu season.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities have identified the man killed in a shooting outside a New Mexico casino that also injured a tribal police officer. The shooting happened last Thursday outside the Route 66 Casino just west of Albuquerque as the officer was investigating reports of a stolen vehicle. Authorities released surveillance video that showed the vehicle pulling into the parking lot and the officer approaching two suspects. FBI spokesman Frank Fisher confirmed Monday that Mario Sandoval was killed.

SANTE FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico State Police for the first time has had one of its officers successfully use a drug to treat a person for an overdose. According to the police agency, an officer administered the drug to an unresponsive woman at a home in Taos County last week after the officer noticed signs of drug usage. The agency says the officer was trained in the administration of Narcan under an initiative between state police and the New Mexico Department of Health. The drug completely or partially reverses an opioid overdose.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities are warning that weather conditions across much of New Mexico are creating conditions ripe for dangerous wildfires. A red flag warning has been issued for portions of southern, central and eastern New Mexico due to strong winds and low humidity. Forecasters say any fires that develop will probably spread rapidly and they say outdoor burning is not recommended.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A group from Los Alamos, once the building site for an atomic bomb, is making an unprecedented trip to a country that was devastated by the weapon. Los Alamos Historical Museum representatives are traveling throughout Japan to gain that country's perspective on the impact of nuclear warfare. The team will visit several cities including the two that were targeted with the bomb — Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Museum director Judith Stauber says they will meet with a bomb survivor, researchers and leaders of two museums. The trip has been in the works for two years.

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Roswell police say an officer fatally shot a suspect who ignored commands to put down his shotgun. Authorities say officers were called Saturday around 11:40 p.m. about a pickup truck driving erratically through a neighborhood. A caller also reported seeing someone in the vehicle pointing a gun. Police located the pickup and compelled 33-year-old Robert D. Guerin, of Roswell, to stop. A passenger than got out and told police Guerin was armed. Guerin exited the vehicle with a shotgun and allegedly refused orders to drop it.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities are investigating possible drug smuggling at the Santa Fe County jail. The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that a corrections officer found 170 Suboxone strips inside a pair of hair clippers being brought to an inmate last week. According an affidavit filed in Santa Fe County Magistrate Court, the clippers were brought by 31-year-old Lauren Herrera. Herrera had been instructed by another woman who had spoken on the phone with an inmate. A sergeant monitoring inmate phone calls searched the clippers and found the drugs.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — An El Paso man has been found guilty in Dona Ana County of distributing the drug spice. County District Attorney Mark D'Antonio announced Saturday that a jury convicted 26-year-old William Langbehn. According to the county sheriff's department, a deputy stopped Langbehn in traffic in October 2015. The deputy determined Langbehn was driving with a suspended license, which led to the vehicle being towed. A subsequent search of the vehicle turned up 174 packets of spice. The drugs were estimated to be worth $850.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The state won't be relying on the University of New Mexico's Health Sciences Center and its $200 million in reserves for help covering Medicaid funding. UNM refused a request to give $50 million to New Mexico's Human Services Department to help with Medicaid. UNM executive vice president David Harris says university officials heard the request at a meeting in mid-February. He says the state indicated it could not guarantee repayment. Human Services Department spokesman Kyler Nerison confirmed the meeting with the university but declined to comment further.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An auditor's analysis conducted after business owners complained shows lodging tax dollars can be used for a broad range of purposes. State Auditor Tim Keller said in a statement that contrary to popular opinion, the tax collected for overnight stays can go toward projects even remotely tourism-related. Cities have used the funds for paving, erosion-control projects and to pay bond debt related to convention centers. Keller said local businesses need to work with municipal governments or urge the Legislature to earmark specific uses for the tax.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez says New Mexico saw a 36-year low in the number of people killed in drunken driving crashes last year. In all, there were 122 DWI deaths. That's a 28 percent decrease from the year before. The governor released the latest figures during a news conference Wednesday in Albuquerque. She says drunk driving has been a major problem in the state for years. While encouraged by the progress, she says the goal is to have no DWI deaths.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Homeowners and small businesses in the second sunniest state in the nation have invested nearly a quarter billion dollars in roof-top solar and related labor thanks to a program fueled by tax credits. But the popular incentives will be going away after New Mexico lawmakers concerned about a budget crisis did not extend the 10 percent tax credit for installing solar. In what has become a nationwide trend, state tax credits and other incentives aimed at boosting the solar industry are disappearing.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The chief of New Mexico state police says investigators are close to concluding their inquiry into the escape of two violent inmates, with no charges pending against the guards who were transporting the men.

Chief Pete Kassetas told The Associated Press on Wednesday that it's possible others would be arrested in the March 9 escape.

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — A fiberglass and metal version of a spaceship reported missing from the UFO Museum in the New Mexico town of Roswell has been found in pieces west of the city.

Police say the model UFO was stolen from the museum early Saturday and surveillance video showed three people hauling the spaceship off in a pickup truck.

Albuquerque TV station KOB reported Wednesday that the saucer was located in a ditch off Highway 70 about two miles west of Roswell.

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