Headlines: Alleged Animal Abuse At NM Dairy, S.F. County Sues Over Ballot...

Sep 17, 2014

Credit sliceofcruelty.com / Mercy for Animals

Group Levels Abuse Allegations Against NM DairyThe Associated Press

Undercover video showing workers at a southern New Mexico dairy whipping cows with chains and wire cables and kicking and punching the animals, has led to a state investigation into possible animal cruelty violations.

The New Mexico Livestock Board confirms it has launched an investigation into the practices at the Winchester Dairy near Dexter.

The group Mercy for Animals presented the video footage to the livestock agency last week. It plans to publicly release a compilation of clips that show the abuse during a news conference today here in Albuquerque.

In a statement, the dairy says animal care and well-being are central to its operations. As a result, the dairy fired all employees and referred the abusive workers to law enforcement for further review. Milking operations and shipments to vendors have been halted.

Santa Fe County Sues Over Marijuana Ballot Dispute - The Associated Press

A second New Mexico county is asking the state's highest court to allow a nonbinding advisory question over marijuana on the November general election ballot.

The legal challenge was filed by Santa Fe County with the state Supreme Court yesterday after the county commission voted to authorize a lawsuit over an elections dispute with Secretary of State Dianna Duran.

The court has agreed to hear a similar lawsuit brought by Bernalillo County, which wants to put nonbinding questions on the ballot about decriminalizing marijuana and taxes.

Duran, the state's top elections official, decided last week that state law doesn't allow advisory questions on the ballot.

The counties are asking the high court to require Duran to place the nonbinding questions on county ballots.

NMSU Fall Enrollment Down 5.5 Percent - The Associated Press

New Mexico State University says fall enrollment is down more than 5 percent from the previous year.

The university released the numbers Tuesday. They show nearly 26,700 students enrolled throughout the NMSU system as of Sept. 5.

At the Las Cruces campus, more than 15,800 students were enrolled for the fall. That represents a 5.6 percent decrease from 2013.

The vice president for student affairs and enrollment, Bernadette Montoya, says the university had several large classes early during the economic downturn and those students are now leaving with degrees.

Since 2009, she says the number of New Mexico high school graduates has declined and the incoming classes have been smaller.

The university says the incoming class of graduate students has increased 7 percent.

Santa Fe Community College Names President - The Associated Press

Santa Fe Community College's governing board has named Randy Grissom as the school's president.

Grissom has been interim president since earlier this year.

The board announced yesterday that Grissom has accepted a three-year contract.

He's the school's eighth president and succeeds Ana "Cha" Guzman, who was fired last December.

The board agreed earlier this year to pay Guzman $500,000 to settle claims that she was fired without good cause.

Hobbs Lab Now Capable Of Firearms Forensic Testing - The Associated Press

The New Mexico Department of Public Safety says its laboratory in Hobbs is now capable of doing forensic analysis on firearms.

The lab can also test cartridge cases, make bullet comparisons, restore serial numbers and do other examinations related to firearms.

Agency officials say the lab's new capabilities will mirror those offered in Santa Fe and will help expedite cases around the state that involve firearms.

In addition to the labs in Santa Fe and Hobbs, the department operates a lab in Las Cruces that focuses on analyzing controlled substances, latent prints and other kinds of trace evidence such as fire debris.

Case Against Navajo Lawmaker In TV Theft Dropped - The Associated Press

Prosecutors have dismissed charges against a Navajo Nation lawmaker accused of stealing a television from a Gray Mountain motel.

But Duane Tsinigine is not entirely off the hook. The case was dropped without prejudice late last month, meaning it can be refiled.

Tsinigine had pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor charges of theft and criminal damage, stemming from a reported theft July 6 at the Anasazi Inn. He says friends had placed a flat-screen TV in the trunk of his car after he checked out of the motel.

According to a police report, two men with Tsinigine ran off before law enforcement arrived.

Mike Lessler of the Coconino County Attorney's Office says the sheriff's office has been asked to investigate further. He says prosecutors then will determine how to proceed.