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Local News

  • Police nab DWI repeat offender

    For the third time in recent weeks, local state police officers caught a repeat DWI offender, reports state.

    Jesus Barraza-Ruiz, 43, 1204 Montezuma St., was charged with the fourth-degree felony of DWI. He was also charged with driving with a suspended license, having no insurance, and failing to display registration and register his car.

    It was his fifth DWI offense, police said.

  • Fiesta dismissals questioned

    Fiesta Council President Mathew Martinez asked that six members he ousted two weeks ago not attend any more meetings.

    He didn’t get his wish.

    On Tuesday, the Fiesta Council held its regular meeting in the City Council’s chambers at City Hall, and four of the dismissed members showed up. Top city officials also attended the first half of the two-hour meeting.

  • Railroad crossing is made safer

    The railroad crossing where two people have been killed over the last couple of years now has mechanical crossing guards.

    Recently, Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway completed the guards at the crossing at Arriba Road north of Las Vegas. The state Department of Transportation secured federal money for the project, which was budgeted at $300,000, according to the state.

    The crossing is often used by those accessing the city’s transfer station.

  • Man charged with sex crime

    A man accused of performing a sexual act on a teen has been sentenced to probation.

    Tony Cisneros, 54, a government employee, pleaded guilty last week to a charge of criminal sexual penetration, a fourth-degree felony.

    He entered a plea agreement with prosecutors and will not be registered as a sex offender if he complies with the terms of his agreement.

    He could have faced up to 18 months in prison.

    According to authorities, Cisneros performed the sexual act on a boy in July 2009 at the youth’s home.

  • Blaze destroys house

    Firefighters responded to a blaze at 1515 S. Pacific St. early Monday afternoon.

    Authorities blocked off nearby streets as hoses were pointed toward the house, which has a large front yard.

    The smoke from the blaze could be seen around town, and as usual, that drew traffic to the westside neighborhood.

    City Fire Chief Phillip Mares said the house was unoccupied at the time of the fire, but a resident, Douglas James, who lives on the property, was not displaced because he lives on another place on the property.

  • Ex-deputy on trial for alleged attack

    Witnesses on Monday described a former San Miguel County sheriff’s deputy as a jealous woman in a rage when she attacked a man she considered her boyfriend.

    Meanwhile, Sheriff Benjie Vigil, who fired the deputy after the incident, said he still believes her side of the story.

    Inez Bolivar, 29, was on trial for charges of aggravated battery, aggravated assault and criminal damage.

  • City holds off on trash rate hike

    The Las Vegas City Council last week delayed making a decision on hiking trash rates after a number of residents feared the increases would hurt the elderly and others on fixed incomes.

    City staffers entreated the council to enact a 43 percent increase to residential rates, which would cost a household an extra $72 per year. Monthly bills would go up from $14.05 to $20.10.

    On top of that, the proposed rate structure would call for automatic 5 percent yearly increases from 2012 to 2015.

  • Chamber deal OK’d, amid questions

    The Las Vegas City Council has signed off on a new annual contract with the Las Vegas-San Miguel Chamber of Commerce to promote the community to tourists.

    But one council member raised questions about the group, saying he wants more accountability.

    The new contract will give the chamber $164,000, down from last year’s $200,000. Much of that drop is because the city has hired an in-house events coordinator, a role the chamber performed previously.

  • New leader

    The West Las Vegas school board has been split on just about everything in recent times.

    But it seemed to give the new superintendent a chance to get his footing on some pressing issues during its monthly meeting last week.

    Ruben Cordova spent his fifth day on the job working into the midnight hour, along with the school board, on a long agenda that included construction projects that are running behind schedule to fire code violations that could get the schools shut down.

    The board also addressed an appearance of a conflict of interest.

  • Boy's body pulled from lake

    After two days of searching, a state police dive team found a missing 13-year-old boy in Storrie Lake.

    They found the boy, identified as Louis Lucero, around 7 p.m. Saturday, state police spokesman Peter Olson said.

    Storrie Lake park staff started the search Thursday afternoon after they were notified that the boy had gone missing and was presumed to be in the water.

    The state police dive team was also called out.

    The team was in and out of the water that first night. A heavy rain slowed them down just after midnight.