2 Scholars Hope New Police Reform Book Will 'Arm' Activists – Associated Press
Two scholars, including one who led a series of protests against Albuquerque police, have written a guide they hope will "arm activists" to push police reforms.
David Correia and Tyler Wall say their book "The Police: A Field Guide" will provide activists in places like Ferguson, Missouri, and Sacramento, California, the tools to recognize attempts to thwart dramatic change.
They say many police departments mainly protect the wealthy against the poor.
Luis Robles, an Albuquerque attorney who has defended police officers involving in shootings, says he finds it "interesting" the book sees officers as the face of capitalism. He says many officers are union members who make less than $60,000 a year.
Correia is a University of New Mexico professor. Wall is an Eastern Kentucky University professor.
Public Defender Hires Man Convicted In Courthouse Scam – Associated Press
One of the men sent to federal prison and ordered to pay millions of dollars in restitution for a courthouse corruption scandal that rocked New Mexico politics has been hired by the state Law Offices of the Public Defender.
Chief Public Defender Bennett Baur is defending the hiring of Toby Martinez, former administrator of the Bernalillo County Metropolitan Courthouse.
Baur says Martinez was the most qualified applicant for the paralegal position.
Martinez along with former Senate President Pro Tem Manny Aragon and others were accused of bilking the state out of $4.2 million in the construction of the $83 million courthouse a decade ago.
Martinez pleaded guilty to taking more than $2 million. He was released from prison in 2013.
The general counsel for the New Mexico Attorney General's Office is questioning the hiring.
Judge Orders Evaluation For 12-Year-Old Accused Of Threats – Associated Press
A New Mexico 12-year-old will undergo a 15-day evaluation after a jury found he brought an airsoft pistol to school and threatened a school employee.
Prosecutors said Friday the child entered Marshall Middle School with the pellet gun on Feb. 8, before school officials were able to secure it from him.
Authorities say the child asked, "how would you like to be shot by a 12-year-old?" He also is accused of making threats to shoot-up the school.
A judge ordered the evaluation for him at a youth facility in Albuquerque. A hearing later will determine treatment or custody options.
The reported threat came six months after an August shooting killed two people and injured four others at the Clovis library.
Some 40,000 people live in the town near the Texas border.
Senate Oks Bill To Expand Child Alert System To Tribal Land – Associated Press
The U.S. Senate has approved a bill that expands a child abduction alert system to tribal land.
The bill is named for Ashlynne Mike, an 11-year-old girl who was lured into a van on the Navajo Nation in May 2016, sexually assaulted and killed. An Amber Alert wasn't issued until the day after she was reported missing. Her body was found near Shiprock, New Mexico.
The bill cleared the Senate on Thursday. It now goes to President Donald Trump.
The bill gives tribes direct access to federal grants that law enforcement agencies use for Amber Alert systems. It also makes permanent a pilot program that offers training for tribes.
The U.S. Department of Justice would have a year to review any challenges tribes face in accessing state or regional systems.
New Mexico Unemployment Rate Dips To 5.8 Percent In January – Associated Press
New Mexico's unemployment rate is down, with the Department of Workforce Solutions reporting that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for February was 5.8 percent, down from 5.9 percent in January.
The department's report Friday says total nonagricultural payroll employment grew by 11,000 jobs, or 1.3 percent, since February 2017 when the state's jobless rate was 6.4 percent.
Most of the job gains in the past year were in the private sector, with the goods-producing economic sector accounting for roughly half of the increase.
The biggest increase was seen in mining and construction, which added 4,200 jobs.
New Mexico Authorities Search For Road-Rage Shooting Suspect – Associated Press
New Mexico authorities say they are searching for the suspect in a road-rage shooting that wounded a 15-year-old boy.
Deputy Felicia Maggard, a spokeswoman for the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office, says the shooting that critically wounded Efrain Arzate Jr. happened at about 10 p.m. Tuesday in Albuquerque.
She says authorities responding to reports of the shooting had found him sitting in the backseat of a Dodge Challenger and rushed him to a hospital in critical condition.
Maggard says the boy was on life support Thursday night.
A suspect has not been identified.
Authorities provided no further details Friday.
This story corrects a previous version that misspelled the victim's first name.
Tuition Hike, Pay Raises On Tap For University Of New Mexico – Associated Press
Regents at New Mexico's flagship university have approved a tuition hike and pay raises for faculty and staff.
The Albuquerque Journal reports, University of New Mexico regents voted following a budget summit Thursday to increase tuition by 2.5 percent. Students will pay $7 more per credit hour for upper-division and some graduate courses, and fees will increase 2.39 percent.
The university says undergraduates would see total costs rise anywhere from $88 to $214 per semester depending on the courses they take.
The revenue generated from the tuition and fee increase will support campus safety measures, faculty retention efforts and investments in the curriculum.
An extra $443,000 will be funneled into student financial aid.
The 1 percent salary bump for faculty and staff with satisfactory job performance will come primarily from a compensation-related increase in state appropriations.
Deputies: Man, Woman Found Dead In Albuquerque Area– Associated Press
New Mexico authorities are investigating a possible murder-suicide in the Albuquerque area.
Bernalillo County deputies say a man and a woman were found dead Thursday night in a home in the East Mountains near Cedar Crest.
The sheriff's office says it is not looking for any suspects.