Local and State News

3:12pm

Tue December 16, 2014
Local and State News

Review: NM Agency Overwhelmed By Relief Requests

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Internal reports, emails, audits and interviews show relief aid for New Mexico communities affected by fires and flooding was slowed by dysfunction within the state Homeland Security and Emergency Management Department.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports a review of records shows the agency was overwhelmed by even relatively modest requests for relief.

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3:11pm

Tue December 16, 2014
Local and State News

22 Fugitives Arrested During New Mexico Operation

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Federal authorities say a law enforcement task force made 22 arrests during a fugitive-apprehension operation in northwestern New Mexico last weekend.

The U.S. Marshals Service says the task force attempted to serve more than 60 state and federal warrants during the two-day operation.

According to the Marshals Service, all of those sought are violent fugitives and three of those arrested are charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Others face charges for robbery, aggravated burglary with a deadly weapon and sex offenses.

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3:10pm

Tue December 16, 2014
Local and State News

New Mexico Court Tells Judge She Must Step Down

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The state Supreme Court says a District Court judge for three northern New Mexico counties must step down after losing a retention election.

The justices ruled unanimously Monday that the election results stand and that Judge Sheri Raphaelson must give up her judicial post on Dec. 31.

Raphaelson serves in a judicial district comprised of Los Alamos, Santa Fe and Rio Arriba counties, and she primarily hears cases in Tierra Amarilla.

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3:08pm

Tue December 16, 2014
Local and State News

Former Las Cruces Cop Gets Lengthy Prison Sentence

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — A former Las Cruces police detective faces a lengthy prison term after being sentenced in a sex case involving minors.

State District Judge Fernando Macias on Monday sentenced former Detective Michael Garcia to 30 years in prison but suspended 10 years of the sentence.

Garcia was convicted of multiple counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor.

He was initially arrested in August 2013 and accused of sexually assaulting a minor and then arrested again in September 2013 on additional charges involving another victim.

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3:08pm

Tue December 16, 2014
Local and State News

Pueblo, Feds Appealing Ruling On Gambling Compact

SANTE FE, N.M. (AP) — The federal government and a northern New Mexico tribe are appealing a judge's ruling in the tribe's dispute with the state over a proposed new gambling compact.

The Interior Department and the Pojoaque Pueblo last week filed notices that they're appealing U.S. District Judge James Parker's October ruling that stopped the department from approving a compact for the pueblo without the state's consent.

The pueblo and Gov. Susana Martinez's administration have failed to agree on a compact to replace one set to expire in mid-2015.

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9:28am

Wed December 10, 2014
Local and State News

Agreement To Clear Way For New Mexico Recount

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The recount in the race for New Mexico land commissioner is one step closer to getting underway.

The state canvassing board met Tuesday to consider an agreement that spells out how the recount will proceed. At issue was how many ballots would be used to test the tabulating machines that will be used in the recount.

Republican Aubrey Dunn and incumbent Democrat Ray Powell are separated by several hundred votes, a margin so small it triggers an automatic recount under state law.

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9:25am

Wed December 10, 2014
Local and State News

Gov. Martinez Unveils Inaugural Celebration Plans

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Newly re-elected Gov. Susana Martinez will kick off her inaugural celebration with a gala in her hometown of Las Cruces on Dec. 28.

Her campaigned announced Tuesday that after the gala the Republican will attend mass at the Cathedral Basilica in Santa Fe that following Wednesday.

Martinez will hold a public swearing-in ceremony Jan. 1, at 9 a.m. in the House Chamber of the New Mexico State Capitol. A public reception will immediately follow in the Rotunda.

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9:25am

Wed December 10, 2014
Local and State News

Hobbs Residents Approve Voter ID Measure

HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — Residents in a southeastern New Mexico city have overwhelmingly approved a measure to require a photo ID to vote in municipal elections.

About 78 percent of voters in a special election Tuesday decided to amend the city charter to require residents to present photo identification at polling places.

Hobbs is the latest battleground over requiring strict identification to cast ballots.

Supporters say the measure would help eliminate potential in-person voter impersonation and increase public confidence in elections.

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9:24am

Wed December 10, 2014
Local and State News

California Man Pleads Guilty In Bank Fraud Scheme

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A California man has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud in multiple states including New Mexico.

Federal prosecutors say 31-year-old Kevin Cohn of Rialto entered his plea Tuesday.

Two co-defendants from California previously pleaded guilty in the case.

Cohn was added as a defendant in March in a 12-count superseding indictment.

He and the two other men were accused of scheming to defraud a bank in January by using counterfeit debit cards to purchase items from U.S. post offices in New Mexico, Arizona and Texas.

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9:23am

Wed December 10, 2014
Local and State News

New Mexico Lottery: $1M Powerball Prize Unclaimed

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Lottery officials say whoever holds a winning $1 million Powerball ticket has only a few weeks to claim the prize.

The ticket sold in Albuquerque on Saturday, Sept. 27 at a Circle K store on Highway 528 Northwest had winning numbers of 2, 11, 35, 52 and 54.

Lottery workers on Monday put up a banner outside the store to try to alert the winner to turn it in and to generally remind players to double-check their tickets.

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9:42am

Fri December 5, 2014
Local and State News

Bernalillo County Appoints Stewart To Senate Seat

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — An Albuquerque Democrat has been appointed to former state Sen. Tim Keller's seat.

Bernalillo County commissioners voted to name state Rep. Mimi Stewart to fill the remainder of term to the District 17 spot after Keller resigned. Keller, also a Democrat, won election as state auditor last month.

The district covers an area of Albuquerque's Southeast Height.

Bernalillo County Deputy Attorney Peter Auh says since Senate District 17 is wholly within Bernalillo County, commissioners can appoint a replacement.

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9:41am

Fri December 5, 2014
Local and State News

NM Lawmakers Eye Forced Mental Illness Treatment

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Some New Mexico residents with severe mental illness could receive court-ordered outpatient treatment under a new proposal.

Senate President Pro Tem Mary Kay Papen discussed Thursday the proposed bill to the Courts, Corrections and Justice Committee.

The bill would allow judges to order patients to take medication and undergo treatment if they are deemed a danger to themselves and their community. Papen says it's a version of New York's Kendra's law.

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9:40am

Fri December 5, 2014
Local and State News

Las Cruces Psychiatrist Accused Of Abusing Patient

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — Police say a Las Cruces psychiatrist injured a former patient during a confrontation.

Daniel J. Brandt has been charged with one count of abuse of a resident, a felony.

Police say Brandt worked with an intellectually disabled man for 13 years until this summer, when the man's guardian requested a new psychiatrist.

On Tuesday, the man and his caretaker visited Brandt's office to drop off paperwork. Brandt then allegedly asked the patient to go inside with him but the man refused.

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9:39am

Fri December 5, 2014
Local and State News

Man Killed In Single-Vehicle Crash

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Farmington police say a 26-year-old man has died in a car collision possibly involving alcohol.

Calvin Begay was driving east on Pinon Hills Boulevard near College Boulevard early Wednesday morning when lost control and drove off the road. The car rolled several times before coming to a stop. There were no other vehicles involved, police said.

Begay died. Two passengers, both 22 years old, were transported to San Juan Regional Medical Center.

Police believe speed and alcohol were factors in the crash.

9:38am

Fri December 5, 2014
Local and State News

'Finding Nemo' To Be Told In Navajo Language

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — The story of a clownfish who is encouraged by an energetic but short-minded friend to "just keep swimming" in the search for his son is being told in Navajo.

The Navajo Nation Museum announced this week that it's teaming up with Walt Disney Studios to dub the movie "Finding Nemo" in Navajo.

Museum director Manuelito Wheeler says he's hopeful the film's tale of perseverance catches on with Navajos wanting to learn their language.

"Finding Nemo" is the second major motion picture to be translated into the Navajo language, after "Star Wars."

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9:56am

Thu December 4, 2014
Local and State News

DOE Details Cleanup Changes At Los Alamos Lab

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Federal officials plan to issue a temporary contract for nuclear waste cleanup operations at Los Alamos National Laboratory while those responsibilities are shifted away from the National Nuclear Security Administration.

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz announced earlier this year he would pull cleanup operations from the contractor that runs the lab after a barrel of waste packed at Los Alamos leaked and forced the closure of the government's underground nuclear waste repository in southern New Mexico.

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9:54am

Thu December 4, 2014
Local and State News

Public Land Measures Squeezed Into Defense Bill

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Wilderness in New Mexico and other western states and a program for streamlining oil and gas permitting would be expanded as part of a $585 million defense bill crafted by House and Senate negotiators.

Lawmakers managed to squeeze the energy and public land proposals into the bill following weeks of negotiation. Final action is expected before the end of the year.

A bipartisan contingent of lawmakers is touting the legislation, but critics say the bill shouldn't be used as a bargaining chip to get the land packages through Congress.

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9:53am

Thu December 4, 2014
Local and State News

Bengal Tiger Dies At Albuquerque Zoo

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — An Albuquerque zoo Bengal tiger has been euthanized.

ABQ BioPark staff said they euthanized Lucy when she did not recover from sedation she was put under to treat bleeding in her mammary glands. An X-ray also revealed a mass in her lungs.

The tiger was 16 years old.

Lucy began living in the zoo shortly after she was born. The zoo has another Bengal tiger, a male who is also 16 years old.

Bengal tigers are endangered in the wild. There are about 2,500 living in India, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh.

9:52am

Thu December 4, 2014
Local and State News

Police Arrest Man Suspected In Deadly Stabbing

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Police have arrested a suspect in the stabbing death of an Albuquerque man.

Harlon Harrison is suspected of killing 33-year-old Steve Buckhanan on Oct. 9.

Buckhanan was found on a street with a stab wound to his right temple.

Harrison was arrested on Wednesday. He said had trouble breathing and was taken to a hospital for evaluation.

9:51am

Thu December 4, 2014
Local and State News

Bar Owner Accused Of Evading Taxes

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Federal authorities say the owner of Sneakerz Sports Bar in Albuquerque evaded taxes for several years.

James Coleman, Jr., was arrested Tuesday on charges of tax evasion and filing false tax returns. He appeared in federal court Wednesday.

Coleman, 57, is accused of failing to pay over $166,000 in federal taxes owed by his corporation, Sneakerz, Inc., in 2008 and 2009 by filing false tax returns that underrepresented the business' income.

According to a news release, Coleman remains in custody pending his arraignment.

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