Candidates for municipal judge, magistrate judge and county sheriff made their positions clear to the Los Alamos voters Thursday night at the League of Women Voters Los Alamos Candidates Forum.
Also in attendance were candidates for House District 43 and county assessor and their debates will be reported in Sunday’s Los Alamos Monitor.
It was a packed house at Fuller Lodge, as residents asked many questions of the candidates.
This year, Los Alamos Municipal Judge Alan Kirk, a Republican, has a challenger in Democrat Paul Martinez. Both candidates clearly communicated to the audience that there are stark differences between them, especially in how they would manage the court if elected or re-elected.
Kirk, who grew up in Los Alamos and was once the town’s police chief, has been the municipal court judge for the last 16 years.
Martinez introduced himself as the founder and director of the two Youth Activities Centers in Los Alamos and White Rock, as well as a U.S. Navy veteran with degrees in sociology and political science. He has been a resident of Los Alamos for the past 32 years.
“Teen Court” and the municipal court’s management relationship with the Juvenile Justice Advisory Board seemed to be where both candidates picked their battles.