Regional

Regional
5:03 pm
Sat January 24, 2015

Suspected Metal Thieves Hurt By Explosion

Authorities say two people stealing scrap metal on federally-managed land in southern New Mexico were injured when an item they picked up detonated.

Otero County Sheriff Benny House says a group was loading unexploded ordnance at McGregor Range near Chaparral on Saturday afternoon when a shell detonated in their vehicle.

House says two females were taken to a hospital in El Paso, Texas. He did not know the extent of their injuries.

Two men who were there were uninjured.

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Regional
12:03 pm
Sat January 24, 2015

Las Cruces House Fire Under Investigation

The Las Cruces Fire Department extinguished a fire Friday evening in a south Las Cruces residence.

 

Firefighters responded to a house on the 4800 block of Vista Cuesta Ave. shortly after 8:00 pm.  First arriving crews found heavy smoke coming from the roof.  Crews located the fire in the attic and quickly brought it under control.

 

The occupants of the residence evacuated prior to the arrival of the fire department.  The cause of the fire is under investigation and a dollar amount of the loss has not been determined.

 

Regional
8:09 am
Sat January 24, 2015

New Mexico Tribes Discuss Proposed Gambling Compact

Credit <p><a href="http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=2280">Image: digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net</a></p>

  Native American leaders from a handful of tribes are seeking support for a new gambling compact negotiated with Republican Gov. Susana Martinez's administration.

The proposed agreement comes after years of discussions. It will require the approval of the state Legislature and the U.S. Interior Department.

The proposal would cover gambling operations by the Jicarilla Apache, the Mescalero Apache, the pueblos of Acoma and Jemez and the Navajo Nation. The current compact expires later this year.

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Regional
8:06 am
Sat January 24, 2015

In Depth: SunZia Renewable Energy Transmission Line Approved

U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) joined U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, U.S. Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment Katherine Hammack, U.S. Congressman Ben Ray Luján, and senior Bureau of Land Management officials Saturday to announce the approval of the SunZia Southwest Transmission Line in New Mexico. The $2 billion infrastructure project will connect and deliver electricity generated in New Mexico and Arizona to population centers across the southwest.

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Regional
8:01 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Water Restored To Carlsbad Caverns After Massive Pipeline Burst Following Freeze

  CARLSBAD, NM – Water was restored to Carlsbad Caverns National Park after 7,000 feet of pipeline burst during a freeze event over New Year’s weekend. The damaged pipeline was the park’s only source of potable water for the visitor center, office buildings and residential housing. The park has been without water for three weeks, except for lavatories in the cave.

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Regional
7:57 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Man Found Guilty Of Murder In Las Cruces

  Las Cruces---Leonard Telles was convicted of 2nd Degree Murder and Kidnapping and (2) counts of Tampering with Evidence for the death of Jerome Saiz in November 2013 in District Court Friday.

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Regional
7:42 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Border Patrol Shoots, Kills Man Who Drives Through El Paso Border Checkpoint

  The U.S. Border Patrol says an agent's shout of "Gun!" led to the fatal shooting of a motorist who drove through a West Texas inspection checkpoint without stopping.  U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a statement Friday about the shooting. The agency said it happened around 5 p.m. Thursday, after a motorist pulled into the inspection lane at the Border Patrol checkpoint on Interstate 10 in Sierra Blanca, about 80 miles southeast of El Paso.

The statement says the man failed to stop, prompting a 30-mile pursuit by Border Patrol agents.

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Regional
4:43 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Trial Date Set For Ex-Santa Fe Officer Accused Of Killing Partner In Las Cruces

  Las Cruces---A hearing to modify conditions of release for Tai Chan; ex-Santa Fe County Deputy, was heard by Judge Fernando Macias in the Third Judicial District Court today.  A trial date of September 28, 2015 was also set.

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Regional
3:52 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

This Week In The Las Cruces Bulletin

 

   Every Saturday at 5:30pm on Images, Fred Martino speaks with Las Cruces Bulletin Managing Editor Brook Stockberger about the week's top stories and much more in the Bulletin.

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Regional
12:15 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Man Faces Murder Charges In Students' Deaths

  A 21-year-old man faces homicide and other charges stemming from Albuquerque collision which killed two University of New Mexico students.

The District Attorney's Office announced Friday that a grand jury Thursday indicted Joshua Leal on multiple charges, including two counts each of homicide and great bodily harm.

According to prosecutors, Leal was driving a stolen truck late the night of Nov. 21 when it collided with a sedan carrying four students. Briana Hillard and Matt Grant were killed, and two other students were injured.

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Regional
12:13 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Mexico Campus Closed Over Gang Threats

  A university campus in northern Mexico has been closed for more than a week due to threats and attempted extortion by gangsters.

The Universidad Valle de Mexico campus in Nuevo Laredo, across the border from Laredo, Texas, has about 700 students enrolled. It is part of the network of the U.S.-based Laureate International Universities, which runs educational institutions in over 20 countries.

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Regional
12:13 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Texas Boom Continues-Jobless Rate Drops To 4.6%

  The Texas unemployment rate slipped to 4.6 percent in December for a fourth straight month of declines.

The Texas Workforce Commission on Friday reported that compares to a November jobless rate of 4.9 percent.

The December statewide jobless figure was the lowest since May 2008 and compares to 6.0 percent unemployment a year earlier.

Gov. Greg Abbott, who was inaugurated Tuesday, says the Texas history of strengthening job growth equates to more opportunity for all Texans.

The nationwide unemployment rate last month hit a six-year low at 5.6 percent.

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Regional
12:11 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Texas Supreme Court To Hear School Finance Case

  The Texas Supreme Court has agreed to hear the state's sweeping school finance case — and set a timetable that ensures there won't be a decision until after the legislative session ends.

An Austin-based district judge has declared the way the state pays for public schools unconstitutional. The attorney general's office is appealing.

In an advisory Friday, the state's highest civil appeals court gave Texas 80 days to file briefs, then attorneys for the 600-plus school districts suing the state 80 days for their own briefs.

Both sides then have 40 days for replies.

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Regional
12:10 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

In Depth: Army Says Fort Hood Lacked System To ID Threat Of Rampage

  Fort Hood officials say there were no clear warning signs before a soldier went on a rampage last April that left four dead and 16 wounded, according to a U.S. Army report released Friday.

There was no indication that Spc. Ivan Lopez would go on a two-block shooting spree before killing himself on April 2, the report concluded. It also said the chain of command would have had difficulty recognizing any personal problems leading up to the attack, because risk assessment relies on self-reporting and Lopez had been dishonest with his supervisors.

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Regional
12:08 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Bishops Want New Mexico To Restrict Late-Term Abortions

  Republicans' new control of the New Mexico House has the state's three Roman Catholic bishops urging lawmakers to enact a bill to restrict late-term abortions.

The GOP now has a majority in the House for the first time in decades, while Democrats remain in control of the Senate.

Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe said New Mexico is among only a few states that don't restrict late-term abortions, often defined as those procedures occurring after 28 weeks of pregnancy

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Regional
11:27 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Drone Crashes At Holloman

An MQ-1 Predator, similar to this one, was part of runway excursion at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. today. The aircraft was taking part in a regularly scheduled training mission. The MQ-1 is a medium-altitude, long-endurance, unmanned aircraft system. The MQ-1&apos;s primary mission is interdiction and conducting armed reconnaissance against critical, perishable targets.

  HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- An unmanned MQ-1 Predator was part of a runway excursion at approximately 8 a.m. Friday.  The aircraft is assigned to the 6th Reconnaissance Squadron, which is part of the Remotely Piloted Aircraft Flying Training Unit, and was taking part in a regularly scheduled training mission.

No one was injured and no private property was damaged. There is no threat to the Holloman population and the airfield remains open.

A board will be convened to investigate the cause of the accident.

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Regional
8:20 am
Fri January 23, 2015

New Mexico GOP House Speaker Tripp 'Never Expected' Spot

A California-born jeweler who only ran for a statehouse seat because he couldn't find another candidate is hoping to make his mark as New Mexico's first Republican House Speaker in 60 years.

Don Tripp of Socorro was elected this week as the new top leader in the New Mexico House of Representatives.

Tripp told The Associated Press he never expected to have the position.

The 68-year-old lawmaker says he's focused on passing a series of measures aimed at improving New Mexico's economy and educational system.

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Regional
8:17 am
Fri January 23, 2015

New Mexico Senator Wants To Modernize Telecom Law

Credit http://www.nmlegis.gov

A state senator has introduced legislation aimed at modernizing New Mexico's 30-year-old telecommunications law.

Sen. Majority Whip Michael Padilla says his bill would create a level playing field when it comes to regulation.

By freeing up large carriers from outdated rules, he says the measure would also encourage more investment in broadband and high-speed wireless communications.

Similar legislation failed last year, but Padilla says he and other lawmakers met with stakeholders to resolve some of the issues.

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Regional
8:13 am
Fri January 23, 2015

New Mexico State Veterans' Home In Line For Federal Funding

Credit http://nmhealth.org/about/ofm/ltcf/nmsvh/

The State Veterans' Home in south-central New Mexico is in line to receive nearly $16 million in federal funds for an expansion project.

Members of New Mexico's congressional delegation announced the conditional funding from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs on Thursday. They say the Veterans' Home still needs to meet certain conditions to receive the funds.

The money would go toward a new 59-bed facility and a rehabilitation area.

The plans also call for 39 beds for Alzheimer's patients.

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Regional
8:06 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Train Route In Northern NM Not Allocated Funds

New Mexico lawmakers have not allocated funding for the upkeep of tracks along a historic passenger train route through northern New Mexico.

That puts the state at risk of losing the Amtrak Southwest Chief passenger train route. The train stops in Raton, Las Vegas and Lamy.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that neither Republican Gov. Susana Martinez nor the Legislative Finance Committee have sought to allocate the estimated $4 million a year it will cost to maintain the route over the next decade.

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Regional
6:45 am
Fri January 23, 2015

LCPS School Board Election District 5 Preview: Edward Frank

Credit http://www.edwardfrankforschoolboard.com/about.html
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Regional
10:26 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Groups Withdraw Support Of PNM Power Plant Proposal

A third group is withdrawing its support of Public Service Co. of New Mexico's plan to shut down half of the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station near Farmington.

Western Resource Advocates notified state regulators in a filing Thursday it could no longer support the plan.

The group was one of several organizations that signed off on a settlement agreement last October to back the plan to replace the electricity that would be lost by the closure of two units at San Juan.

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Regional
10:03 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Man Accused In 2006 Murder Extradited From Mexico

  Las Cruces, NM – Today, the U.S. Marshals Service booked wanted alleged murderer Eduardo Estrada-Garcia in a Dona Ana County jail after extraditing him from Mexico. The Border Violence Division of the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office worked with the U.S. Marshals Service, the United States Department of Justice and the Mexican government to bring Estrada-Garcia back to New Mexico to face an open count of murder for the alleged 2006 brutal murder of a Chaparral, New Mexico woman.

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Regional
4:41 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Las Cruces Man Arrested After Alleged Dispute, Murder Of Girlfriend

  A 23-year-old Las Cruces man is in jail after Doña Ana County Sheriff’s deputies discovered his girlfriend’s lifeless body Wednesday night inside the couple’s Doña Ana home.

Corey Franklin reportedly went to the Las Cruces Police Department just before 7 p.m. Wednesday to report a burglary at his house in the 1400 block of Eclipse.

During questioning, Franklin changed his story and told the officer the incident was actually a domestic dispute between him and his 24-year-old girlfriend, Graciela Hernandez.   

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Regional
4:11 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

VIDEO: Heinrich Outlines Objections To Keystone Pipeline

U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, delivered a speech on the Senate floor today in opposition to legislation to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline. 

Regional
12:54 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Top Judge: New Mexico Courts Overburdened

New Mexico courts have requested a nine percent increase in funding over last year to address hundreds of thousands of cases that remain open.  Supreme Court Chief Justice Barbara Vigil asked lawmakers to fund the courts with nearly $172 million for the 2016 fiscal year, which begins July 1.

The courts were allocated $157 million last year.

Vigil says trial court judges presided over nearly 400,000 new and reopened cases in fiscal year 2014 alone, with an average of 2,300 cases per judge.

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Regional
12:52 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

UNM Sex Assault Report Released

  An independent analysis says there's "a lot of confusion and misunderstanding" at the University of New Mexico about where students can report sexual violence.

Details of the report released Thursday outlined a series of steps the university could take to prevent sexual assaults on campus amid a U.S. Department of Justice investigation.

Jill Pilgrim, who headed up the independent report, says her team found that the school also had too many policies on sexual violence and needed to streamline them. She suggested that staff have access to better training.

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Regional
12:49 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Suspect In Shooting Of Albuquerque Officer Indicted

  A homeless man has been indicted to charges related to the shooting and wounding of an Albuquerque police officer during a traffic stop.

The Second Judicial District Attorney's Office announced Thursday that a grand jury returned indictments against Christopher Cook in a shooting that garnered national attention.

The 36-year-old faces a number of charges, including aggravated battery on a peace officer.

He's accused of shooting Officer Lou Golson earlier this month after the officer pulled him over on suspicion of drunken driving.

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Regional
10:54 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Newsmakers 701

Field reports include:  A look at the expanded use of body cameras coming to the Las Cruces Police Department in 2015; plans are underway to pave important roads in the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument; and New Mexico State University film students get real-life experience to prepare for a career.

Regional
9:50 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Outside Team To Release UNM Sexual Assault Report

Credit unm.edu

An outside team of experts plans to release its findings following a review of the campus culture on sexual assault at the University of New Mexico.

Team leader Jill Pilgrim and Dean of Students Tomas Aguirre are expected to discuss the findings during a presentation Thursday.

In December, the U.S. Department of Justice announced it was launching an investigation into the university's handling of reported sexual assaults and sexual harassment of students.

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