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Local News

  • Husband facing criminal charges

    A Las Vegas man is facing criminal charges after allegedly choking his wife until she momentarily lost consciousness during an argument in their home on Dec. 17.

    State police have issued an arrest warrant for a 35-year-old Las Vegas man on charges of aggravated battery against a household member, false imprisonment and assault.

    According to records filed in San Miguel County Magistrate Court, the alleged victim told police her husband turned violent in an argument and choked her with his right hand, causing her to “black out.”

  • 2010: A look at the year’s top stories

    1 Over the last year, residents have clashed over how to regulate wind farms in San Miguel County, making it the Optic’s top story for 2010.

    The controversy brought out the issue of economic development.

    Many argued that opening the door to wind turbines would boost the area’s economy and increase tax revenue by hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars every year.

    But others argued that turbines would adversely affect the area’s scenery, create constant noise for neighbors and kill wildlife.

  • Petition calls for vote on wind farm

    Opponents of the San Miguel County Commission wind ordinance are gathering signatures on a petition calling for a popular vote on the matter. But the legality of the petition itself is already being called into question.

    Rock Ulibarri, an opponent of the wind ordinance that passed Dec. 20, said the petition began circulating that day. The petitioners believe they must gather 15 percent of the county’s qualified voters within 30 days to force the matter on a special election ballot.

  • County officials take oath of office

    Newly elected San Miguel County officials took the oath of office Monday as district judges Matthew Sandoval and Eugenio Mathis, in turn, swore in Sheriff Benjamin Vigil, commissioners Ron Ortega and Arthur Padilla, Assessor Elaine Estrada, and Probate Judge Horace Lucero.   

    Sheriff Vigil, a Democrat, won re-election in November with 77 percent of the vote. Vigil was first elected to head the sheriff's department in 2006.

  • Police deal with rash of car break-ins

    Las Vegas has seen an increase in vehicle break-ins over the holiday season, Interim Police Chief Christian Montaño said Monday.

    Residential burglaries, however, are comparatively down, he said.

    In November and December, 28 vehicle burglaries were reported in town, compared to only 13 during the same two months a year earlier. In a news release issued last week, Montaño warned that the break-ins were occurring to “unlocked and unattended” vehicles.

  • Student helps MainStreet increase Artwalk interest

    By Margaret McKinney
    Highlands University

    New Mexico Highlands University business student Jewell Esquibel helped increased Las Vegas business participation in Second Saturday Artwalk through a work- study internship with MainStreet Las Vegas.

    During the fall semester, Esquibel worked as the coordinator for Second Saturday Artwalk. Since 2008, more than 75 local artists have participated in Artwalk by teaming up with local galleries, retail shops, restaurants and other businesses to attract locals and visitors to historic downtown Las Vegas.

  • Residents near town to get tax cut

    Nine households southwest of Las Vegas will see a substantial drop in their property taxes next time around.

    That’s because the residents successfully argued to a valuation board that their loss of water has diminished the value of their properties.

    Earlier this month, the San Miguel County Valuation Protests Board ordered the county to reduce the residents’ property values by a third.

  • Christmas Mass
  • Anaya defends 2004 decision

    Six years later, former Gov. Toney Anaya says selecting Manny Aragon as Highlands University president was “the right decision at the time.”

    “We were looking at pursuing a different course for Highlands,” Anaya said in a recent interview.

    In 2004, Anaya was president of the Board of Regents when the panel selected state Senate leader Manny Aragon as president.

  • Family helps children in war-torn Juarez

    By Alfredo Corchado
    Dallas Morning News

    CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico (AP) — Even in this neighborhood where gunbattles keep them awake at night, the children are filled with the anticipation of Christmas. Heidi wants a doll. Nayeli craves cream-filled chocolates. Nancy dreams of roller skates.