Local News

  • Suspect jumped in river; is presumed dead

    A Pecos man has been missing since last week after he jumped in the Pecos River He's presumed to be dead by the family.

    In an email from a New Mexico State Police spokesman to the Optic, officers were involved in a vehicle pursuit May 9 while investigating larceny in Pecos. The description of the suspect given to the investigating officers was that of a Hispanic male who was wearing black/dark clothes.

  • First responders honored

    Six first responders were given certificates at Wednesday’s Las Vegas City Council meeting for their service at the recent funeral of Matt Sandoval, who died shortly after retiring from a public-service career that spanned nearly 40 years.

    Sandoval, who began his career as a Las Vegas Police officer, was laid to rest on short notice, with full honors. In back are the Councilor Vince Howell, Mayor Tonita Gurulé-Giron and Councilors Barbara Perea-Casey and David G. Romero.

  • Sex assault trial set for ex-L.V. Fire Dept. engineer

    A three-day trial has been scheduled for a man charged with sexually assaulting a family member, a girl police say was 16 at the time.

    David Garcia, 46, of Las Vegas, is scheduled to go on trial beginning Aug. 5 in the Fourth Judicial District Court. Garcia was arrested in October 2018 and charged with criminal sexual penetration of a child, a second-degree felony.

  • Santa Fe-based prosecutor seeks Lujan’s seat

    The Associated Press

    SANTA FE  — Santa Fe District Attorney Marco Serna has registered with federal election regulators to seek the Democratic nomination to Congress in New Mexico’s 3rd District.

    Serna spokesman James Hallinan said Tuesday that the prosecutor is planning a formal announcement by the end of May on whether to run for Congress in 2020. Serna was elected to a four-year term as district attorney in 2016 for the state’s First Judicial District.

  • New Mexico In Brief

    The Associated Press

    S.F. mayor seeks play space for migrant children

    SANTA FE — Donations are pouring into a relief fund for asylum seekers in New Mexico that would create a toy- and book-filled play area for migrant children at a temporary shelter in Albuquerque.

    Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber announced Tuesday in an email that more than $10,000 in donations has been received and called the local community tremendously responsive and philanthropic.

  • Oil and gas production expands near Chaco Canyon

    By April Reese, Searchlight New Mexico

    COUNSELOR — About halfway through a late-April Sunday service at the Living Spring Baptist Church, the sermon took an unusual turn. Pastor Tom Guerito’s exhortations to trust in God and resist sin, delivered mostly in Diné, gave way to a more earthly concern: oil and gas.

    “People say, ‘I smell it,’” Guerito told the 20-or-so parishioners, who since 2012 have lived among an expanding constellation of oil and gas wells.

  • Statewide Diversity Summit at Highlands next week

    By Margaret McKinney, N.M. Highlands University

    Highlands University is sponsoring a statewide diversity summit May 21–22 titled “Envisioning Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Higher Education.”

    The free summit will be held in the Highlands Student Center Ballroom, 800 National Ave., from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. May 21 and from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. May 22.

  • Commission approves agreement with Chamber

    PECOS — By a 4-0 vote Wednesday, the San Miguel County Commission single-handedly put the Las Vegas / San Miguel County Chamber of Commerce back in business.

    The Commission awarded a $30,000 appropriation to the Chamber, which only has two members on its Board of Directors who were on the board three years ago.

  • Council kills northside zoning change

    After a hearing that lasted more than three hours, the Las Vegas City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to block a contentious zoning change proposal for a parcel of land located between Seventh and Eighth streets.

    Wednesday’s meeting was already about 90 minutes old when a hearing began for the zoning change, and the overall meeting lasted nearly until midnight.

  • UNMH report claims intentional trauma by man toward daughter

    A Las Vegas man is charged with abuse of a child resulting in great bodily harm after a report from the University of New Mexico Hospital Department of Pediatrics stated the child sustained intentional trauma.

    According to the police affidavit, On Dec. 26, Taylor Neal Herrera said he was changing his daughter while she had her legs up and crossed. Herrera went to put the legs down and heard a pop.

    He then informed his girlfriend and they took the child to Alta Vista Regional Hospital. The Children, Youth and Family Department interviewed both parents.