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Today's News

  • Maestas is the new Luna chairman

    Jerry Maestas is the new chairman of the Board of Trustees at Luna Community College after a unanimous vote during a reorganization of officers.

    Maestas replaces Ambrose Castellano, who has served as chairman for the past five years. Member Frankie Tenorio, a Santa Rosa resident who was elected earlier this year, nominated Maestas for the top post. Trustee Levi Alcon was not present for the vote at the monthly meeting on Tuesday, nor did he attend the June 10 meeting held in Springer.

  • Holm fight a go; LV boxers to be showcased

    Calling it “a new journey for my boxing career,” world champion Holly Holm on Wednesday made it official — her next fight will be Aug. 28 in Las Vegas.

    Holm (24-1-3, 7 KOs) will fight Terri Blair (11-13-2, 6 KOs) in the main event of the card, to be held at the Wilson Complex on the New Mexico Highlands University campus. Tickets ranging from $20 to $200 are available via Ticketmaster and several other area vendors.

  • THUMBS: Our high country lowdown on the news

    DWI INTOLERANCE. Following the June tragedy in Santa Fe, when four teenagers were killed by the drunken driver, old wounds surfaced. Again, it was a tragedy that defies explanation, and will call many into another round of action to combat DWI.

  • Cowboys picked 9th in RMAC football

    New Mexico Highlands’ football team will enter this fall as a decided underdog after being picked to finish ninth in the 10-team Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.

    The Cowboys are coming off a 3-8 campaign and entering their second season under head coach Chad Roanhaus.

     The 2009 RMAC Football Preseason Poll, voted on by the league’s coaches, was released this past week by the league office.

  • HOMETOWN HEROES: Exploring a new world

    For the past six years, Highlands University Spanish Professor Lillian Gorman has been taking a group of students on an adventure that is partly academic and partly an exploration of a new world.

    And it’s with an intense focus on the Spanish language. 

    Each summer, Gorman and about a dozen students spend two weeks immersed in the Spanish language at Casa Xalteva, a small orphanage and school in Nicaragua.

    Each year, the students return home with many stories and fond memories of the special time they spent there.

  • School gets new leader

    Longtime local educator Eddie King is the new principal of Robertson High School.

    Las Vegas City Schools Superintendent Rick Romero an-nounced the decision Thursday. King, Robertson’s assistant principal since 2007, was one of 10 applicants. A panel of administrators, teachers, parents and students interviewed five of the applicants.

    Romero said King has shown loyalty to the district, starting as an English and Spanish teacher at Memorial Middle School in 1981 and moving on to the high school as a teacher in those subjects in 1998.

  • July 31 dance to benefit Kryptonite

    It’s a big dance to help the Las Vegas Kryptonite baseball team get to the big dance — the upcoming state tournament.

    Camino Oscuro, a band from Pecos, will play at the Night Owl from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Friday, July 31. The dance and show will help raise funds for the Kryptonite, who play in the Sandy Koufax tourney in late July and early August.

  • Inquiry clears Vegas officer

    Authorities have cleared a Las Vegas police officer of any criminal wrongdoing in his handling of a suspect earlier this year.

    District Attorney Richard Flores announced this week that a state police investigation found that Officer Martin Salazar’s actions didn’t rise to the level of a crime — a conclusion with which the DA agreed.

    Flores said the state police conducted a thorough investigation, interviewing about 20 people, including jailers who alleged that Salazar threatened the female arrestee, Bernadette Varela, with violence.

  • North wins two of three All-Star clashes

    Former West Las Vegas standout Kristen Encinias connected on several big long-range shots Friday night in the Class 3A North-South All-Star girls' basketball game. But her last make, from short range, was the biggest of them all.

    Encinias sank one of two free throws with 24 seconds left in regulation to nudge the North ahead 74-73, and that would end up the final margin in one of the more exciting North-South contests in years.

    The North went on to sweep Friday's hoops doubleheader after also prevailing 101-85 in the boys' game.

  • Salazar may sue county

    A Las Vegas police officer is seeking more than $250,000 in damages from San Miguel County for releasing documents about him that he contends should have been kept secret.

    On July 8, Officer Martin Salazar filed a tort claims notice with the county, which is a warning that he may sue.

    He stated that he has suffered from emotional distress since stories have appeared in the Optic about county jailers’ allegations against him.

    A top county official counters that he and his employees have followed the law.