Today's News

  • Houston endures more rain and chaos; 6 feared drowned in van

    By MICHAEL GRACZYK and DAVID PHILLIP, Associated Press

    HOUSTON (AP) — Floodwaters reached the roof lines of single-story homes Monday and people could be heard pleading for help from inside as Harvey poured rain on the Houston area for a fourth consecutive day after a chaotic weekend of rising water and rescues.

    The nation's fourth-largest city was still largely paralyzed by one of the largest downpours in U.S. history. And there was no relief in sight from the storm that spun into Texas as a Category 4 hurricane, then parked itself over the Gulf Coast. With nearly 2 more feet of rain expected, authorities worried whether the worst was yet to come.

    Harvey has been blamed for at least two confirmed deaths. A Houston television station reported Monday that six family members were believed to have drowned when their van was swept away by floodwaters.

    The KHOU report was attributed to three family members the station did not identify. No bodies have been recovered.

    Police Chief Art Acevedo told The Associated Press that he had no information about the report but said that he's "really worried about how many bodies we're going to find."

  • Final chance to comment on proposed campaign finance rule

    Those interested will have a final opportunity to comment on a campaign finance rule proposed by New Mexico Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver on at 9 a.m. Wednesday at the State Capitol Building.

    Comments can also still be submitted on the revised campaign finance rule draft until 5 p.m. on Tuesday by sending them to State Elections Director Kari Fresquez at

    Kari Fresquez–Proposed Rule, Office of the New Mexico Secretary of State, 325 Don Gaspar, Santa Fe, NM 87501, or by email at Attn: Kari Fresquez–Proposed Rule, sos.rules@state.nm.us; or by fax at Attn: Kari Fresquez–Proposed Rule, 827-8081.

    To attend the final public hearing, the public is invited to the State Capitol Building at 9 a.m. Wednesday. The location is 490 Old Santa Fe Trail, Room 321, in Santa Fe.

  • Police Beat 8-27-17

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, served a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Aug. 16
    6:32 a.m. — Los Alamos Police reported a missing person near Pine Street trailhead.

    1:15 p.m. — An individual found a hole drilled into his vehicle’s fuel tank.

    1:48 p.m. — LAPD reported a male exposing himself behind Blue Window Bistro.

    4:53 p.m. — Police investigated a report of shoplifting at Smith’s that occurred Aug. 15. A male individual stole merchandise from the store.

    Aug. 17
    9:30 a.m. — LAPD cited an individual for indecent exposure.

    10:05 a.m. — An individual reported debit card fraud to the police department.

    4:33 p.m. — Police investigated a report of shoplifting.

    Aug. 18
    12 a.m. — Police issued a warning to an individual for barking dogs after PSA officer witnessed barking for over 10 minutes.

  • Historians warn against rushing to take down statues

    NEW YORK (AP) — It’s not just about Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson.

    The national soul-searching over whether to take down monuments to the Confederacy’s demigods has extended to other historical figures accused of wrongdoing, including Christopher Columbus (brutality toward Native Americans), the man for whom Boston’s Faneuil Hall is named (slave trader) and former Philadelphia Mayor Frank Rizzo (bigotry).

    Historians interviewed by The Associated Press offered varying thoughts about where exactly the line should be drawn in judging someone’s statue-worthiness, but they agreed on one thing: Scrapping a monument is not a decision that should be made in haste during political fervor.

    “If we do this in some willy-nilly way, we will regret it,” cautioned Yale University historian David Blight, an expert on slavery. “I am very wary of a rush to judgment about what we hate and what we love and what we despise and what we’re offended by.”

  • School board OK’s two-story Barranca Mesa design

    The newly approved design for Barranca Mesa Elementary School was announced Thursday evening at an open house.
    Superintendent Kurt Steinhaus excitedly told the crowd of parents and students that the new Barranca School would be a two–story building, a design that has been one of two contending options for construction.

    About an hour or so before Barranca’s open house began, Steinhaus and the school board had a final meeting to discuss the pros and cons of each plan before making the final vote.

    The process of discussing and narrowing down design schemes has required many meetings, but with the help of the architects, district construction coordinator, school staff and parents, a decision was finally made.

    The two previously proposed plans included a single story option and a two-story floor plan. With either option, construction will take about 16 months, roughly from March 2018 through August 2019, and the cost is nearly the same.

    FBT Architects drew up transition plans for both schemes, something parents had specifically asked for in prior meetings, and Board Member Andrea Cunningham briefly reviewed the construction summary.

    The board took comments from the crowd before final deliberation.

  • Two suspects arrested after shoplifting, crashing into parked cars

    Two male suspects involved in a shoplifting incident late Friday night were arrested. Stephen Montano and Joel Martin were located and arrested for aggravated assault, aggravated fleeing, and shoplifting.

    LAPD Commander Preston Ballew stated that the police are actively investigating the remaining suspect or suspects and believes future arrests are probable.

    On Friday, the suspected shoplifters fled from Smith's Marketplace on Trinity Drive in Los Alamos in a white Nissan pickup truck and then crashed into two parked cars on Arroyo Street shortly before 11 p.m.

    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. They 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 Street.

    A third car, a green Ford Explorer, was parked in front of the crashed Titan truck and had one of its rear windows damaged. No bystanders were injured in the collision.

  • Girl's soccer continues hot start to season

    The Los Alamos High School varsity girl’s soccer team continued their hot start to the season, winning 13-3 on the road Saturday against Grants High School.

    LAHS head coach Ann Cernicek was happy with the result, especially the offensive firepower of her team.

    “Any time you score 13 goals in a game, it’s a pretty amazing day,” Cernicek said.

    Seven different girls scored goals for the Hilltoppers, led by hat tricks from Alix Hailey and Vianey Terrazas.

    Alisia Haagenstad and Kaitlyn McGrane both added two goals of their own.

    “Having lots of different girls score on lots of different kinds of plays is fantastic,” Cernicek said.

    She said that though the team has areas they need to improve as the season moves along, she is pleased with how the team is coming together.

    “Overall, a super day for the ‘Topper girls, and I’m really impressed with the progress that we’re making,” Cernicek said.

    The team improves to 3-0 this season. They have outscored opponents 26-5 so far this year.

    They return home for a game against St. Pius X on Tuesday evening at Sullivan Field. The game will begin at 5:30 p.m.

  • Back to School
  • LAPD offers reward in WR gas tank caper

    After two recent occurrences of gas tanks found with drill holes in the White Rock area, the Los Alamos Police Department is asking for the public’s help with any information that might help its investigation into the tampering.

    The LAPD is especially looking to find out about any suspicious people who might have been seen underneath parked cars in the area.

    The two incidents happened less than a week apart in White Rock, with one near La Vista Church. On Aug. 16, an individual found a hole drilled into his gas tank around 1:15 p.m. Similarly, two drill holes were found on the gas tank of the La Vista Church van.

    LAPD is offering a reward of up to $150 to anyone who has information that might lead to the arrest of the suspect or suspects.

    The police department has not received any leads as of Friday, but Cmdr. Oliver Morris has asked the community to keep an eye out on their vehicles and each other.

    Morris encouraged the public to keep in touch with neighbors and contact the police if a suspicious person is seen hanging around cars or crawling underneath cars.

    Morris believed that the drilled holes were not random malicious acts, but someone trying to steal gas.

  • NNSA, LANL face questions over safety record, plutonium program

    A U.S. senator from Missouri has requested answers from National Nuclear Security Administration Secretary Frank Klotz about the numerous safety violations the Los Alamos National Laboratory has incurred.

    Referencing a recent report from the Center for Public Integrity, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), a ranking member of the Senate’s Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee, issued a letter Thursday to the NNSA asking them to report to Congress to answer questions about safety violations.

    “I have previously noted my concerns regarding DOE’s (Department of Energy’s) poor oversight and management of its contracts and its inability to properly exercise effective oversight of its budget,” McCaskill said in her letter. “The incidents described in this recent report, especially at  Los Alamos, raise serious questions about NNSA’s commitment to safety and effective contract management.”

    In her letter, McCaskill asked how much of President Donald Trump’s $13.9 billion funding request will go toward improving safety standards at the Department of Energy’s facilities, and if the NNSA will fine or penalize the contractors who violated safety standards.