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Courts

  • Man Gets $7 Million in Popcorn Lung Lawsuit
  • Local Courts: On the Docket 09-20-12

    Heather Philips was found guilty by the Los Alamos Magistrate Court of disorderly conduct; the charge was originally battery against a household member.
    Wilson was ordered to pay $73 in court fees and undergo supervised probation for 182 days.
    Conditions of probation include: Avoiding arrest during her probation period and complying with all court-ordered conditions of probation. Philips was also ordered not to possess or consume alcohol or enter an establishment where liquor is served. She also can’t possess a firearm, or any other type of weapon or destructive device.
    Philips must also meet with her probation officer within seven days and maintain contact.

  • Patient Appeals Penis Amputation Verdict
  • Martinez: Amnesty pulls in $834K in child support

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez has announced that the state has collected more than $834,000 in delinquent child support payments thanks to an amnesty program.

    Martinez made the announcement Monday and said non-custodial parents made a total of $834,372 in direct payments during the amnesty period and subsequent bench warrant sweep.

    State officials say 79 non-custodial parents were arrested. The total amount of bonds owed on these cases was $243,277.

    In addition, around 25 percent of total child support bench warrants statewide were canceled.

    Law enforcement agencies throughout the state attempted to serve warrants during a warrant sweep that followed the amnesty period.

  • Dems pick Vigil as nominee for Supreme Court race

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — State Democrats on Saturday chose Chief District Judge Barbara Vigil of Santa Fe as their party's general election candidate for the New Mexico Supreme Court.

    The Democratic state central committee picked Vigil over four others who sought the nomination at a meeting in Albuquerque.

    The nomination was needed because Justice Patricio Serna retires at the end of the month. Normally voters would choose their party's nominee to replace him, but because the vacancy comes after the June primary election each party's central committee is nominating a candidate.

    Republicans will pick a nominee Sept. 8.

    GOP Gov. Susana Martinez will appoint a justice to serve until the winner of November's general election takes office later this year.

  • Officials Dedicate Sculpture

    From left to right: First District Court Chief Justice Barbara Vigil; Arts in Public Places Advisory Board member Ken Nebel; APPAB chair Carolyn Bossert; First District Court Judge Glenn Ellington; First District Court Judge Stephen Pfeffer; Los Alamos County Council Chair Sharon Stover; Artist Troy Williams; Councilor Frances Berting; APPAB Member Peggy Pendergast; First District Court Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer; APPAB Vice Chair Becky Cordova; First District Court Judge Michael Vigil; Municipal Judge Alan Kirk and Magistrate Judge Pat Casados.

  • Santa Fe merchants sue city over rules at plaza

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A downtown Santa Fe merchants group that feels city officials have ignored their concerns about events on the Santa Fe Plaza has filed a lawsuit contending that the city hasn't been following its own laws.

    The Albuquerque Journal reports that the lawsuit filed earlier this month by Santa Fe Downtown Merchants Inc. refers to public safety, access for existing businesses and the expansion of some events beyond the boundaries set in ordinance.

    Mayor David Coss says city streets are under the control of the city, which can issue a permit for groups to use them.

    Coss says the Plaza belongs to everyone, not just the downtown merchants.

    Elizabeth Pettus, president of the Downtown Merchants, says the group is seeking to define exactly what city ordinances do and don't require.

  • Local Courts: On the Docket 08-17-12

    August 7

    • Seaux L. Michelle was found guilty in Los Alamos County Magistrate court of driving while under the influence of liquor and/or drugs.
    Judge Pat Casados ordered Michelle to pay $241 in court costs and undergo supervised probation for 364 days.
    Probation conditions are: avoid being arrested or convicted of any other offense and compliance with all court orders concerning probation; defendant is required to enter and complete an alcohol/drug counseling program and complete at least six sessions; complete DWI school within 90 days; complete the Victim Impact Program within 90 days and have an ignition interlock device installed on all vehicles driven by Michelle.
    Michelle’s also not allowed to possess or consume alcohol or enter an establishment where liquor is served while on probation.
    Michelle cannot possess or own a weapon while on probation. Michelle must also meet with his probation officer within seven days and maintain contact as required. Michelle will also perform 24 hours community service under the supervision of a probation officer.

    • Luis Ponce Chitica was found guilty in Los Alamos County Magistrate Court of driving with an expired registration plate and without evidence of registration.
    He was ordered to pay $142 in court fees.

  • Rio Arriba jury convicts man in double slaying

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A northern new Mexico man who was acquitted of murder after a 2007 trial has been convicted in two other killings.

    A jury in Rio Arriba County found 29-year-old Donald Ferran guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and tampering with evidence. Prosecutors says the Ojo Caliente resident lured 25-year-old Joey Maestas and 27-year-old Sarah Salazar to a highway rest stop north of Espanola in March 2011 after seeing Maestas flash a wad of cash. The victims were found in a burning Honda at the rest stop.

    The Santa Fe New Mexican reports Ferran was convicted Monday and faces life in prison. A sentencing date hasn't been set.

    Prosecutors accused Ferran of killing a woman in 2005 but could not produce a murder weapon and he was acquitted.

  • Justice for All

    Jemez Springs artist Troy Williams maneuvers his sculpture,  “The Scale of Justice,” into place at the Justice Center. Stop by and see if you recognize anyone: the 12 jurors are all modeled after Los Alamos residents. The price of the sculpture was $70,000. The dedication ceremony for the sculpture takes place at 3 p.m., Aug. 22.