Regional

Regional
12:16 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

In Depth: The Week In Texas Politics

Here's a look at who else had a tough week in Texas politics — and who fared better.

WHO'S UP

Border Security Proponents

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Regional
12:13 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

Albuquerque Officer Who Shot Detective Still On Leave

Authorities say an Albuquerque police officer who shot and critically wounded a detective remains on leave but not for punitive reasons.

The Albuquerque Journal reported Saturday that Lt. Greg Brachle is still on administrative leave three weeks after the shooting that occurred during an undercover drug bust.

Police spokesman Tanner Tixier says Brachle is getting counseling and trying to figure out when he can return to normal duty.

Tixier says that is normal with all officer-involved shootings.

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Regional
12:07 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

DeLay: Perry Hurt By Indictment

Credit Former Texas Governor Rick Perry (R)

Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay says he can relate to the fallout of an indictment that now dogs Rick Perry as the ex-Texas governor mulls a GOP presidential bid.

DeLay told a legal seminar Saturday in Houston that Perry may downplay the effect of a felony abuse of power indictment in Travis County. But DeLay says his experience shows an indictment has political legs, makes people shy away and influences financial donors.

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Regional
12:06 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

NM Appeals Court To Rule On Teen's Clean Air Lawsuit

A New Mexico appeals court may overturn a ruling against a high school student's lawsuit against the state calling for air quality protection.

The New Mexico Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday in then-16-year-old Akilah Sanders-Reed's 2011 suit, saying the state is obligated to protect the public's air quality.

A state district judge ruled against Sanders-Reed, who is now a university student in Minnesota.

At the time, Sanders-Reed's lawsuit was one of many nationwide as part of an effort to hold states responsible for greenhouse gas emissions.

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Regional
12:03 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

15-Year-Old Texas Boy Accused Of Murdering Mother

Corpus Christi police say a 15-year-old boy faces a juvenile murder charge after his mother was found slain in her home.

Police say the boy was arrested Saturday on a murder warrant and moved from a hospital to a juvenile detention center. The youth was treated for injuries sustained prior to being detained by officers and was under police guard while hospitalized.

Cdmr. Michael Alanis says autopsy results are pending on the 45-year-old woman. Her body was discovered Thursday after a neighbor contacted police to report a foul odor.

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Regional
12:00 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

Las Cruces Fire Leaves Behind Heavy Smoke Damage

The Las Cruces Fire Department responded to the 1900 block of Carlyle Drive for a structure fire.

 

Las Cruces Firefighters were dispatched just after 1 a.m. Saturday to home fire.  The first arriving fire crew witnessed heavy smoke and flames coming from a bedroom window.  Fire crews attacked the fire and had it extinguished within minutes.  All residents had evacuated prior to the arrival of fire crews.  

 

Regional
12:00 pm
Sat January 31, 2015

Mother Arrested Unresponsive In Desert With Infant Sleeping In Car

  Doña Ana County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a remote desert area northeast of Las Cruces just before 2 p.m. Thursday after two teenagers reported seeing a young woman who appeared to be passed out next to her vehicle. An infant was sleeping inside the car.

            The woman was later identified as Rokki Howard, 24. According to investigators, Howard appeared intoxicated and became combative when deputies tried waking her.

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Regional
5:15 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Drunk Driver Charged With Killing Best Friend

  Las Cruces—Estevan Herrera was indicted on January 29, 2014 on 8 counts which included, Homicide by Vehicle (Driving While Under the Influence) Homicide by Vehicle (Reckless), Leaving the Scene of an Accident (Great Bodily Harm or Death), Aggravated Driving While Under the Influence of Intoxicating Liquor or Drugs, Reckless Driving, No Seat Belts, Negligent Use of a Deadly Weapon (Intoxication), Failure to Give Information and Render Aid, Failure to Give Immediate Notice of Accidents.

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Regional
4:25 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Man Sentenced To 39 Years For Murder

  Las Cruces---Today in district court, Leonard Telles was sentenced to 39 years for his conviction of 2nd Degree Murder, First Degree Kidnapping and Tampering with Evidence for the beating death of Jerome Saiz in November 2013.

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Regional
4:22 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

NMSU Regents Approve Land Lease For Possible Future Campus Hotel

  SANTA FE – The New Mexico State University Board of Regents approved a land lease for Aggie Development Incorporated during their regular meeting in Santa Fe Jan. 30. Aggie Development allows NMSU to better manage and develop its assets. The lease will allow Aggie Development to pursue a third-party to develop a hotel property on the NMSU campus. 

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Regional
1:15 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

High Speed Pursuit In Las Cruces Ends With Arrest And Near Tragedy

  A driver suspected of running a stop sign in Sonoma Ranch Thursday led a Las Cruces Police officer on a pursuit before attempting to hide the vehicle in his family’s garage.

Nicholas Newell, 23, is charged with one felony count of aggravated fleeing from a law enforcement officer. Newell also faces the possibility of being charged with multiple traffic offenses.

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Regional
1:06 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Health Audit Offers Striking Numbers, But No Proof Of Fraud

The headline the New Mexico Human Services Department trumpeted in June 2013 was eye-popping: An audit of 15 health organizations found nearly $36 million in potential overbilling and possible Medicaid fraud.

But the state-commissioned audit, released Thursday by new Attorney General Hector Balderas, does nothing to provide definitive proof that the 15 organizations defrauded Medicaid, the government’s health insurance program for the low-income, including those who are mentally ill or struggle with addiction.

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Regional
1:04 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

With Audit Release, Balderas Ends 19 Months Of Secrecy

New Attorney General Hector Balderas reversed a decision by his predecessor that had been upheld by two judges when he released a 2013 audit of 15 health organizations on Thursday.

Former Attorney General Gary King and the state’s Human Services Department (HSD) fought for a year and a half to keep most of the audit secret. They argued that releasing portions related to organizations under investigation for potential Medicaid fraud could compromise those probes.

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Regional
1:02 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

In Depth: Redacted New Mexico Behavioral Health Audit Released

Credit Hector Balderas

  Weeks after taking office, new Attorney General Hector Balderas released on Thursday the 2013 audit of 15 New Mexico behavioral health agencies, albeit with some redactions.

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Regional
12:30 pm
Fri January 30, 2015

Lt. Gov. Sanchez Appointed To Innovate ABQ Board Of Directors

  SANTA FE – This week, Lieutenant Governor John Sanchez was appointed to the Innovate ABQ, Inc. Board of Directors by the University of New Mexico (UNM) Board of Regents.

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Regional
10:57 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Las Cruces Police Investigate Shooting

Las Cruces Police are investigating a shooting that injured a 38-year-old man.

At around 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 29, Las Cruces Police were dispatched to Memorial Medical Center where a 38-year-old man was suffering from a gunshot wound to his abdomen. Police learned that someone transported the man to the hospital and left before providing information to medical personnel.

The 38-year-old man was stabilized at MMC before being airlifted to University Medical Center of El Paso. He remains hospitalized in critical condition Friday morning.

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Regional
8:08 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Balloon Crew Nearing North America Matches Duration Record

Credit https://www.facebook.com/TwoEaglesBalloonTeam

The pilots of a helium balloon flying across the Pacific Ocean have matched a duration record as they approach North America, marking another historic day for the team that's already set a distance record.

Pilots Troy Bradley of Albuquerque and Leonid Tiukhtyaev of Russia marked another milestone early Friday when they hit 137 hours, 5 minutes and 50 seconds in the air in a traditional gas balloon.

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Regional
8:06 am
Fri January 30, 2015

George P. Bush Headlines Texas Capitol 'School Choice' Rally

Credit George P. Bush - Photo from texasgop.org

New Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush is leading a "school choice" rally supporting calls to expand voucher programs and charter schools statewide.

Organizers say Friday's gathering outside the Texas Capitol will be the largest of its kind in recent memory.

Bush served on the board of one of Texas' top charter-school operators, and his office oversees the nation's largest educational endowment.

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Regional
8:04 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Difficult Driving Conditions Reported On Some NM Highways

Forecasters predict heavy snow in the mountains and a mix of rain and snow in lower elevations as a winter storm moves across northern and central New Mexico.

The New Mexico Department of Transportation reported difficult driving conditions Friday morning on some highways, including Interstate 25 between Rowe and Watrous. That stretch of I-25 is wet, snow-packed and icy in spots, and crews are out plowing, salting and cindering.

Other highways in the Las Vegas area also have difficult driving conditions.

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Regional
7:54 am
Fri January 30, 2015

A.G. Balderas Offers Investigation Update After Releasing Behavioral Health Audit

Credit Hector Balderas

The New Mexico Attorney General on Thursday announced the release of a 2013 Behavioral Health Services Audit and said that his office is hoping to complete an investigation into the providers within six to eight months. 

New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas on Thursday announced the release of a redacted version of a 2013 Behavioral Health Services Audit and also gave an update on a current investigation into the providers.

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Regional
7:39 am
Fri January 30, 2015

New Mexico Immigrant License Repeal Effort Passes First Hurdle

An effort to repeal a New Mexico law that allows immigrants suspected of being in the country illegally to obtain driver's licenses has cleared its first hurdle despite a comparison to the Holocaust.

The House Safety and Civil Affairs Committee voted 5-4 along party lines Thursday to move along the GOP-led proposal aimed at revamping the state driver's licenses laws.

But Rep. Patricia Roybal Caballero, an Albuquerque Democrat, said the effort reminded her of stories from the Holocaust and warned it would create more divisions in New Mexico.

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Regional
7:38 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Former EL Paso Schools Official Gets Probation

A federal judge has sentenced a former El Paso Independent School District administrator to five years of probation and fined her $5,000 for her role in a scheme to artificially inflate test scores.

The El Paso Times reports Myrna Gamboa cried before and during her Thursday sentencing. Gamboa, who pleaded guilty in October to conspiracy to defraud the U.S., told the judge she wanted to apologize for her actions.

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Regional
7:36 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Increase In Vaccination Exemptions A Concern For New Mexico

A measles outbreak traced largely to Disneyland in Southern California has New Mexico health officials concerned.

The outbreak has spread to Arizona, Colorado and other states but hasn't hit New Mexico yet. However, state officials say they're concerned because an increasing number of families have been seeking vaccine exemptions for their children.

According to the Santa Fe New Mexican, the state Department of Health reported 3,335 registered exemptions in 2014, up 17 percent from two years earlier.

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Regional
6:00 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Is Banning Plastic Shopping Bags The Green Thing To Do?

Is the ban on plastic shopping bags making Santa Fe greener less than a year after it was formally implemented? How will the ban in Silver City which was implemented earlier this month affect other cities in New Mexico who might be considering implementing a plastic shopping bag ban? Edmundo Resendez discussed these questions with Paul Gesssing, President of the Rio Grande Foundation.

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Regional
8:59 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Former El Paso School Official Gets Probation In Testing Scandal

  A federal judge has sentenced a former El Paso Independent School District administrator to five years of probation and fined her $5,000 for her role in a scheme to artificially inflate test scores.

Myrna Gamboa cried before and during her Thursday sentencing. Gamboa, who pleaded guilty in October to conspiracy to defraud the U.S., told the judge she wanted to apologize for her actions.

Her attorney and prosecutors agreed she should serve only probation because she helped with the investigation and didn't receive any bonuses for her role in the scandal.

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Regional
8:29 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Teen Charged After Alleged Threat With Gun

  Doña Ana County Sheriff’s investigators have obtained a warrant for an18-year-old Las Cruces man after he allegedly threatened a 16-year-old girl with a shotgun.

According to court documents, Lawrence Lucero, who also goes by Josh Lucero, threatened the girl on or about Jan. 16.

The victim sent a text message about the incident to a friend of hers, who then alerted school administrators at Rio Grande Preparatory Institute.

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Regional
8:26 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Three Arrested In Connection With Burglary

William Fontana

   According to Doña Ana County Sheriff’s investigators, one man has been arrested and two others have been identified in connection with the alleged burglary of a Mesilla Park car wash.

            Media attention about the investigation prompted members of the public to identify William Fontana from surveillance photos taken during the alleged burglary. Fontana was arrested Wednesday by New Mexico State University Police.

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Regional
4:59 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

New Mexico Lawmaker Pushing Teen Voting In School Elections

A New Mexico lawmaker wants to allow 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds to vote in school board elections.

Rep. Javier Martinez of Albuquerque introduced this week a measure aimed at increasing voter participation in the election of school board members.

Martinez, a Democrat, says a similar measure has been passed in Takoma Park, Maryland.

The proposal comes as some lawmakers are pushing a voter I.D. measure that critics say might reduce voter participation in the state.

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Regional
4:52 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

New Mexico House Panel OKs 'Right-To-Work' Proposal

A New Mexico House committee has approved a right-to-work bill after hearing hours of impassioned appeals from speakers.

The House Business and Employment Committee voted 8-5 Thursday, largely along party lines with one Democrat joining seven Republicans, to move forward the contentious bill that prohibits requiring workers to join a union or to pay dues as a condition of employment.

Opponents far outnumbered proponents. They told lawmakers the bill would hurt workers by lowering wages and allows big business to bully them.

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Regional
4:48 pm
Thu January 29, 2015

Roswell DA Won't Prosecute Santa Fe Police Over Shooting

The Roswell district attorney won't prosecute two Santa Fe police officers involved in a 2013 non-fatal shooting.

The Albuquerque Journal reports 5th Judicial District Attorney Janetta Hicks stated her decision in a letter Thursday to New Mexico State Police.

The Santa Fe police officers shot at a suspect who was driving his mother's van that had been reported stolen.

Hicks says the officers were defending themselves as they had to rapidly move out of the way of the vehicle to avoid being struck.

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