State news at a glance

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By Associated Press

Airplane makes


landing in


ALBUQUERQUE – An American Airlines flight from New York to Los Angeles made an emergency landing at a New Mexico airport after passengers reported smelling smoke or fumes.

A spokesman for Albuquerque International Sunport, Daniel Jiron, said Flight 117 from JFK to LAX landed without incident about 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

He said someone reported a man had lit matches.

Jiron said the man was removed and Transportation Security Administration personnel and the FBI made a sweep of the plane.

He added the plane was cleared, passengers reboarded and the flight left for Los Angeles about 10:30 p.m.

 There were no reports of injuries among the 169 passengers and crew.

The man’s name was not released.

Grant to help

students finish


SANTA FE – Voters have approved a $35 million bond that will give community college students a chance to complete their education in Santa Fe.

About one-third of the funding will be used for a new higher education center.

Administrators with Santa Fe Community College said the center is expected to be ready for classes by the fall of 2012.

The center will focus on degrees such as business, public administration, education and social work.

Santa Fe Community College President Sheila Ortego said the school plans to request proposals from other colleges that have expressed interest in the center for programs that will lead to bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

New Mexico State University, University of New Mexico and others have shown interest.

Couple arrested for allegedly burning baby

LAS CRUCES – A young Las Cruces couple has been arrested after they allegedly burned their child with a cigarette lighter.

Authorities said the child’s 24-year-old mother was booked on one count of negligently permitting child abuse and her 19-year-old boyfriend faces two third-degree counts of intentional child abuse.

A Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Department investigator said the baby’s father noticed burn marks — which looked like they came from an automobile cigarette lighter — on her upper left arm, lower lip and buttocks.

The couple was arrested Friday and booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center, where they were each being held under a $10,000 bond.

State Fair puts a lid on ticket prices

ALBUQUERQUE – The New Mexico State Fair is keeping a lid on ticket prices and there will be no increases this year.

Fair officials said Tuesday that admission is $7 for ages 13 to 61. The cost is $5 for children who are 6 to 12 years old and for senior citizens age 62 and older.

Admission is free for kids who are age 5 and younger.

Parking is $7 and fair officials said that’s the same price charged in 2007.

The fair opens Sept. 10 and runs through Sept. 26. The fair is closed Mondays and Tuesday, except for some livestock and horse shows. The Downs at Albuquerque racetrack and casino, which is on the fairgrounds, will remain open during the fair.

Teen in hazing case  sentenced to state custody  

SANTA FE – A teenager who pleaded guilty to several charges in a hazing case involving the 2008 sexual assault of fellow members of the Robertson High School football squad has been sentenced to two years in state custody.

Judge Mark Macaron during a hearing Tuesday in Santa Fe ordered 18-year-old Michael Gallegos to spend two years in the custody of the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department. Gallegos, a key figure in the case, had pleaded guilty in May to two counts of criminal sexual penetration, three counts of attempted criminal sexual penetration and one count of conspiracy.

Gallegos and five older players with the Las Vegas, N.M., team were accused of sodomizing younger players with broomsticks at an August 2008 preseason camp. All of the young men have pleaded guilty.

- Associated Press Court