Today's News

  • Machine-learning earthquake prediction in lab shows promise

    Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory are working with machines that may make future prediction of earthquakes possible.

    By listening to the acoustic signal emitted by a laboratory-created earthquake, a computer science approach using machine learning can predict the time remaining before the fault fails.

    “At any given instant, the noise coming from the lab fault zone provides quantitative information on when the fault will slip,” said Paul Johnson, LANL fellow and lead investigator on the research, which was published Wednesday in Geophysical Research Letters.

    “The novelty of our work is the use of machine learning to discover and understand new physics of failure, through examination of the recorded auditory signal from the experimental setup. I think the future of earthquake physics will rely heavily on machine learning to process massive amounts of raw seismic data. Our work represents an important step in this direction,” he said.

    Not only does the work have potential significance to earthquake forecasting, Johnson said, but the approach is far-reaching, applicable to potentially all failure scenarios including nondestructive testing of industrial materials brittle failure of all kinds, avalanches and other events.

  • LAPD advises caution after thefts

    Los Alamos Police Department advise local shoppers to take precautions following recent incidents at the at the Los Alamos Smith’s Marketplace.

    According to the police, an individual reportedly attempted to steal a woman’s purse. Although no arrests have been made, the case is still active and under investigation.

    The Monitor will have more info on the incident in an upcoming edition.

    This incident follows a recent robbery of an elderly woman’s purse that began in the Smith’s parking lot and ended with her beaten in her own driveway.

    On May 12, an unknown woman came up to the victim, offered unsolicited help and then asked for some change. After opening the wallet to retrieve some coins, the woman was able to see the wallet’s contents, which contained cash. The victim was presumably followed home from the grocery store and was assaulted and robbed of her purse.

    As a public service announcement on the heels of such events, LAPD Commander Preston Ballew advised the public to pay attention to their surroundings and park as close to the store as possible.

    If anyone feels that they are being followed, do not go home and drive to police department, or dial 911.

    “Don’t fight back because who knows what could happen,” Ballew said.

  • Shoplifters arrested after fleeing, attempting to run over officer

    Two men were arrested this week after shoplifting and fleeing from police. The suspects crashed a truck after fleeing from Smith’s Marketplace in Los Alamos Friday.

    An unknown amount of suspects were involved in the shoplifting and accident, but Stephen Jaymes Montano and Joel A. Martin, were located and arrested that night, according to Los Alamos Police Department.

    Montano and Martin were arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer, aggravated fleeing, shoplifting, leaving the scene of a crash, reckless driving and criminal damage to property. Montano also had the two active bench warrants.

    Around 9:45 p.m. on Friday, Los Alamos Police Department Cpl. J. Montoya was dispatched to a shoplifting incident involving a white Nissan Titan pickup truck.

    The suspects drove out of the Smith’s Marketplace parking lot, heading east on East Road, turned right onto Arroyo Lane, then right onto Verde Ridge Road.

    Around 10:10 p.m., Cpl. R. Larsen advised over radio that shots were fired and the white Nissan truck was fleeing from him.

    The white truck then wrecked on Verde Ridge and Arroyo Lane. The suspects had turned around in the cul de sac at the end, ran over a group of mailboxes, then crashed the truck into two cars parked on Arroyo Lane.

  • Santa Fe Archdiocese collecting donations for Harvey relief

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — The Archdiocese of Santa Fe and Catholic Charities of New Mexico are organizing donation efforts for those affected by Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana.

    The Archdiocese of Santa Fe announced Tuesday that the two entities are collecting donations online to be given to Catholic Charities in southeast Texas and Louisiana.

    In addition, all Archdiocese of Santa Fe parishes have been invited to participate in a second collection during the weekend of Sept. 17 to aid those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

  • Floodwaters drop across much of Houston; death toll at 20

    By NOMAAN MERCHANT and JUAN LOZANO, Associated Press

    HOUSTON (AP) — Harvey's floodwaters began to drop across much of the Houston area and the sun peeked through thinning clouds Wednesday in the biggest glimmer of hope in days for the besieged city. But as the crisis eases, the storm could begin to give up its dead.

    "We have good news," said Jeff Lindner, a meteorologist with the Harris County Flood Control District. "The water levels are going down. And that's for the first time in several days."

    The number of confirmed deaths rose to 20 when authorities reported that two men drowned on Monday. One of them drove around a barricade and into standing water, while the other tried to swim across a flooded road.

    Authorities expect the toll to rise as the waters recede and they are able to take full stock of the death and destruction wrought by the hurricane.

    Many thousands of homes in and around the nation's fourth-largest city were still swamped and could stay that way for days or longer. And some Houston-area neighborhoods were still in danger of more flooding from a levee breach.

    Officials said 911 call centers in the Houston area were still getting more than 1,000 calls an hour from people seeking help.

  • Festival celebrating Bigfoot in Jemez Springs Saturday

    Some people believe Bigfoot, the legendary, ape-like creature that allegedly roams the forests of the great northwest, has moved south. More specifically – somewhere in the Jemez Mountains.

    The village of Jemez Springs will host a barbecue, festival and lecture Saturday celebrating this the legend.
    Called the Bigfoot BBQ & Blues Fest, the event is organized by Jemez Springs resident Felix Nuñez.

    “Although I don’t want to hang my hat on Bigfoot’s existence, I think there’s been a lot of fascinating audio and video clips that can only be described as ‘unexplainable’ but real to those who have had personal encounters,” Nuñez said.

    “Whether you believe in Bigfoot or not, this event is for everyone who wants to enjoy live music, the beautiful Jemez Valley and hear from one of New Mexico’s top Bigfoot experts.”

    The event begins at 11 a.m. in the town’s main plaza when DJ Julian Trujillo plays music to get the event started. Nomad’s BBQ, Marley’s BBQ and local breweries will be selling food and drink. 

    Woodcarvers and vendors will also sell various handcrafted items.

  • Sec. of state seeks more info about complaint

    The New Mexico Secretary of State’s Office has requested more information from Patrick Brenner, a Sandoval County resident who filed a complaint against Los Alamos County Councilor Susan O’Leary with the office on July 10.

    Brenner filed a claim with the office, claiming that O’Leary was in conflict of interest when she advocated for the passage of a recreation bond measure when also serving as part of a political action committee that promoted the $20 million recreation bond measure in May.

    Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver, a Democrat, has asked Brenner to clarify why he thinks O’Leary is in conflict of interest.

    “The complaint doesn’t really make anything clear about why Mr. Brenner is making his complaint, and that’s why our office then submitted that letter to him asking for clarification,” Secretary of State Communications Director Joey Keefe said. 

    Brenner is also alleging that the PAC accepted donations from non-profit organizations, which he says state law prohibits.

  • NKorea leader urges more missile launches targeting Pacific

    By FOSTER KLUG and KIM TONG-HYUNG, Associated Press

    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un called for more ballistic missile tests targeting the Pacific Ocean, Pyongyang announced Wednesday, a day after his nation for the first time flew a ballistic missile designed to carry a nuclear payload over Japan.

    Tuesday's aggressive missile launch — likely the longest ever from North Korea — over the territory of a close U.S. ally sends a clear message of defiance as Washington and Seoul conduct war games nearby.

    Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency said it was a Hwasong-12 intermediate range missile that the North first successfully tested in May and threatened to fire into waters near Guam earlier this month.

    Kim expressed "great satisfaction" over the launch that he called a "meaningful prelude" to containing Guam, which is home to key U.S. military bases that North Korea finds threatening, the agency said. He also said the country will continue to watch "U.S. demeanors" before it decides on future actions.

  • Pastor: New Mexico shooting suspect showed no warning signs

    CLOVIS (AP) — The suspected teen gunman who opened fire inside an eastern New Mexico public library, killing two people and wounding four, appeared to be turning his life around, volunteering at church and never missing a service, the youth's pastor said Tuesday as the small farming city of Clovis struggled to understand the violence.

    Living Word Church of God Pastor David Stevens said the teen had been troubled but started attending his church more than three months ago and gave no indication that anything was wrong. He said the teen, who was dating his daughter, had been searching for "inner peace" and making strides in his life.

    Stevens found out that the teen was the suspect when his daughter rushed to the Clovis-Culver Public Library after receiving a text from a friend with a video of person who looked like her boyfriend being led away in handcuffs by police.

    After the girl arrived with her mother, they were led to authorities and interviewed by a detective who identified the boy as the suspected shooter and took her cellphone, looking for any messages between the teens that might help in the investigation, said the mother, Paula Stevens. The pastor said police found nothing.

  • The Latest: Facebook, Google to match Harvey donations

    HOUSTON (AP) — The Latest on Tropical Storm Harvey (all times local):

    2:55 p.m.

    Facebook and Google are matching donations to people affected by Hurricane Harvey, the tech giants announced on Tuesday. Facebook says it will match every dollar raised through its platform, up to $1 million, for the Center for Disaster Philanthropy's Hurricane Harvey Recovery Fund. The money will support local recovery and rebuilding efforts. U.S. Facebook users are getting a message at the top of their news feed on how to donate.

    Google says it is matching $1 million in donations to the American Red Cross. To donate, go to https://www.google.org/harvey-relief/ . The company also matched donations from employees, and said Tuesday it donated $750,000 between its nonprofit arm, Google.org, and employee contributions to organizations such as the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity and Save the Children.


    2:30 p.m.

    Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner confirmed that police Sgt. Steve Perez has died after he became trapped in his patrol car as he was driving to work.

    The Houston Chronicle has reported that the 30-year officer was heading to work Sunday when he became trapped in high water on Interstate 45 in north Harris County and then couldn't get himself out of his car.