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Local News

  • High-profile officer leaves department

    Shawn Montoya, who had become increasingly high profile in the Las Vegas Police Department over the last couple of years, resigned this week, Police Chief Gary Gold said.

    Gold wouldn’t provide any other information on Officer Montoya’s departure.

    After Gold became chief last year, he named Montoya as the department’s grant writer, a new position intended to draw more state and federal money for the police. Montoya spent part of his time as a patrol officer and the other part as a grant writer.

  • Mora Co. mom says she wasn't informed

    A hearing for a man accused of sex crimes against underage victims was delayed because a victim’s family apparently wasn’t given enough notice.

    Clifford Gutierrez, 34, of Cleveland, N.M., is facing sex crimes charges in three cases, according to state documents.

    District Attorney Richard Flores said he decided to seek a delay in the arraignment in one of the cases on Wednesday afternoon after speaking with attorney Melissa Stephenson of the Albuquerque-based New Mexico Victims’ Rights Project. The judge granted the delay.

  • City not told about WIPP incident

    When a truck carrying defense-related radioactive waste veered off the road and struck a fence, state police didn’t inform the Las Vegas fire and police departments, officials said this week.

    Mayor Tony Marquez asked for reports from police and fire officials at Wednesday’s City Council meeting about the incident involving the semi-truck headed to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant near Carlsbad. The incident was just a few miles north of town near the Airport Road exit on Interstate 25.

  • Eighth-grader wins West bee

    Jeraldin Hernandez, an eighth-grader at West Las Vegas Middle School, is the district Spanish Spelling Bee champion and will compete in the state competition in Albuquerque.

    The Concurso de Deletreo de Nuevo Mexico is sponsored by the state’s Association for Bilingual Education and will be held April 12 in Albuquerque at the Embassy Suites Hotel.

    Hernandez, a native of Mexico, and Valley Elementary student Maricela Lopez were the only spellers standing after the first round of competition, but Hernandez finally won after spelling the word b-u-e-y, which means ox.

  • Students learn about Newton

    Los Nios kindergartners had no problem figuring out and answering questions about Isaac Newton’s scientific theories as the Bradbury Museum’s Science on Wheels program spent the day at the school demonstrating the scientist’s laws on inertia, acceleration and motion.

    The kids observed demonstrations by science teachers from the Los Alamos museum and gave surprisingly accurate answers behind the theory.

  • Policy to undergo legal review

    City officials said Wednesday they would determine whether the city’s ordinance for shutting off nonpaying customers’ natural gas complies with state laws.

    Finance and utility officials explained to the City Council their processes for turning off natural gas services — a report requested by Mayor Tony Marquez.

  • Public describes desired leader

    Las Vegas City Schools board members gave the public a chance to tell them what they expected and wanted in a new superintendent, but only a handful showed up to Tuesday’s forum.

    However, Herman Gallegos, who said he was a former employee with City Schools, saw the small turnout as a vote of confidence for the board. He said his four sons are graduates of Robertson and his daughter is now a freshman at the school.

  • Sapello man charged with assault in land dispute

    A Sapello man is facing charges of threatening a nearby landowning family and their lawyer by throwing grapefruit-sized rocks and trying to blockade them from proceeding in their pickup truck.

    Manuel Sena, 60, who is not the well-known Las Vegas insurance agent, was charged last year with four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and one count of false imprisonment. The alleged incident happened Oct. 30.

  • Campos gets five-year contract

    Pete Campos, the outgoing superintendent of the Las Vegas City Schools, will get a five-year contract to serve as president of Luna Community College, its Board of Trustees decided Tuesday.

    After an hour and a half closed session, the trustees voted 5-2 in favor of the contract.

    Luna’s attorney, Tony Ortiz, said this morning that Campos will make $150,000 a year, which he said was consistent with other college presidents in New Mexico. The contract doesn’t include a provision for severance pay, he said.

  • District addresses fundraising proposal

    The Las Vegas City Schools board is debating whether it wants students to serve as door-to-door sales people raising funds for such things as school trips.

    Last week, the board reviewed a proposed school fundraising policy. Members said they were looking for better ways to raise money.

    The East and West school districts have sponsored big fundraising events to try to ease the burden on parents, the business community and the community at large when students hit the streets selling everything from candy to doughnuts and pizzas.