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Today's News

  • Two dogs involved in attack on smaller dog captured

    Los Alamos Animal Control Officers located and seized two dogs Tuesday that are suspected of killing a smaller dog, according to the Los Alamos Police Department.

    The owner of two shepherd-type dogs has been cited, according to LAPD Commander Preston Ballew. The attack happened March 29 on Acoma Lane.

    “Charges have been filed through the Los Alamos Magistrate Court,” Ballew said Wednesday.

    The owner, Leslie Sherman, was cited with three counts; two are dangerous dog acts, one for each dog, and the third count is a petition to court for the seizure of the dogs, according to the police report.

    Los Alamos Dispatch received a call at 1:17 p.m. March 29 about a possible dog attack, so Los Alamos County Police Corporal Sheldon Simpson and Senior PSA Officer Robert Aragon went to the residence to investigate the reported dog attack, according to the report.

    “…A witness observed (two) large dogs, one brown and the other black, come into the yard where a smaller dog was,” according to Ballew. “The (two) large dogs killed the smaller dog and left the area.”

  • Los Alamos National Bank warns of ATM data skimmers

    SANTA FE (AP) — Los Alamos National Bank employees have found scanning devices used to steal bank card information at two drive-thru ATMs in Santa Fe.

    The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that bank officials say the two so-called "skimmer" devices have been removed from the ATMs. Police also removed cameras that had been installed above the machines to record customers entering their PIN numbers.

    Los Alamos National Bank President and CEO John Gulas said Wednesday that he believes the scam began last week, though it's unclear when the skimmers were installed.

    Police have identified a suspect based on surveillance video. Anyone with information about the skimmers is asked to call Santa Fe police.

  • UNM regents delay Los Alamos campus tuition hike decision

    The University of New Mexico Board of Regents has postponed the decision to grant a 4-percent tuition increase at the Los Alamos campus indefinitely because of state education budget uncertainty, university officials said Wednesday.

    A UNM budget summit scheduled for Thursday was canceled because university officials are concerned that Gov. Susana Martinez will veto House Bill 2, a bill that distributes funds to the state’s colleges and universities, according to a memo sent to the university’s community.

    “The UNM Budget Summit scheduled for April 7 has been canceled due to the possibility of House Bill 2 being vetoed and a special session being called,” the memo said.

    UNM-LA officials reached Tuesday said they plan to go forward with a budget review for 2017, even though it looks like the proposed tuition hike has been postponed indefinitely.

    All decisions made by the UNM-LA Advisory Board must be approved by the UNM Board of Regents, which includes tuition increases and annual budgets.

  • LANL employee pleads no contest in theft of tools

    A Los Alamos National Laboratory employee from Española pleaded no contest to larceny and tampering with evidence Monday in First Judicial Court in Santa Fe.
    Richard Atencio, 52, was arrested April 4, 2016, for the theft of lab tools in September 2015. One of the tools was found to be radioactive.
    All employees who may have had contact with the tools were tested and decontaminated without incident.
    Police caught Atencio north of Tech Area 18 attempting to dump the items on the side of the road.  
    Items recovered at the scene included a band saw valued at $5,493, and two dollies valued at $7,180.
    Police were able to match the exact price of the items through records kept by LANL. Other stolen items included a box of pipe fittings, two pairs of work gloves, a bottle of liquid cleaning agent, a yellow roll of tape, a silver metal transport hitch, two rolls of white tape, blue and silver tow rope, and a green water hose.
    One of the tools was found to be radioactive, which prompted all employees who may have had contact with the tools to be called to TA 54 to be tested.
    According to the district attorney, all items were recovered and returned to LANL. Atencio was then charged with larceny and attempting to tamper with evidence.

  • LANL releases cultural artifacts plan

    The Los Alamos National Laboratory has released its Cultural Resources Management Plan, a plan designed to streamline the process of identifying and protecting cultural and historical sites on its property.
    The plan is the end result of an agreement with the New Mexico State Historic Preservation Office and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation Concerning Management of the Historic Properties of Los Alamos National Laboratory on how to manage, preserve and protect the sites.
    Without the agreement or the plan, the numerous sites would bog down LANL’s work efforts.  
    “Absent (the agreement), routine operational tasks such as mowing and facilities maintenance would be subject to six- to eight-week project approval timelines through the (NNSA) Field Office and from the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO),” LANL’s Cultural Resources Management Plan said.
    Spread out over the 40 square miles of the Pajarito Plateau, Los Alamos National Laboratory has about 1,886 known sites of cultural and historic value.
    The sites range from places where arrowheads and stone tools were found – dating between 9500 BC to 5500 BC – to buildings and sites from the Manhattan Project and the Cold War.

  • ‘I love what I do and I’m always finding new ways to teach ideas’

    Naly Ramirez, 31, had a job she loved, teaching Spanish at a private language institute in Albuquerque.
    Even as she and her husband moved to Los Alamos a year ago, she kept commuting because she loved teaching.
    When her child’s pediatrician in Los Alamos needed Spanish lessons before a move to California, she began to see the possibility that she could bring her love of teaching to her new home.
    What started as individual lessons among health care and technical workers has now sprung into small classes of adult students, called Se Habla Español (Spanish is Spoken Here).
     “I love what I do and I am extremely positive about it. I learn every day and I’m always finding new ways to teach ideas,” she said.
    The four, weekly two-hour classes, cost of $110, and offer interaction, brain workouts, games, music and a grasp of the language almost from the moment you walk in the door, she said. The goals for a new beginner’s class, which begins April 12 and continues each Wednesday until May 3 from 6-8 p.m., include learning the pronunciation of about 100 words, exposure to talking about future activities, and other basics. Her classes are held at project Y in Los Alamos.

  • On the Docket 4-5-17

    March 6
    Ashley Martinez  pleaded no contest in Los Alamos Municipal Court to speeding 11-15 miles an hour over the speed limit. Defendant’s sentence deferred until June 3. Defendant also sentenced to defensive driving school. Defendant must pay $65 in court costs.

    March 7
    Gordon Runer pleaded no contest in Los Alamos Municipal Court to speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit and failing to appear in court. Defendant was sentenced to defensive driving school and fined $25.  Defendant’s sentence deferred until May 4. Defendant must also pay $65 in court costs.

    Ruben Griego was found guilty by the Los Alamos Municipal Court of speeding 16-20 miles an hour over the speed limit. Sentence deferred until May 5. Defendant was also sentenced to defensive driving school. Defendant must also pay $65 in court costs.

    Russell Dupre  was found guilty by the Los Alamos Municipal Court of careless driving and not having a proper driver’s license. Defendant must pay $65 in court costs. Defendant also sentenced to defensive driving school. Defendant must also pay $130 in defensive driving costs.

  • Softball stays on top of district with win

    ALBUQUERQUE – The Los Alamos Hilltopper softball team stayed a leg up on the rest of District 2-5A with a lopsided victory Wednesday on the road.
    The Hilltoppers scored in each of the five innings of their game against the Albuquerque Academy Chargers, coming up with 5 runs in their first at-bat, then tacking on three runs in the third and fifth innings to close things out early.
    Reyna Lucero, the Hilltoppers’ ace, threw 3-1/3 innings and allowed just one run as Los Alamos pounded Academy 14-2.
    Wednesday’s game could’ve been a tricky one for Los Alamos (14-7 overall, 8-1 in district) as the Chargers gave the team a scare earlier this month. The Chargers, who have struggled throughout 2017, nearly pulled off an upset over the Hilltoppers in extra innings at Overlook Park during the first game of a doubleheader, but Los Alamos did come back to win that one, 10-9.
    But following the big first inning, there wasn’t a lot of drama to be had Wednesday in Albuquerque.
    Los Alamos features a lot of power in its batting order and had that on full display against Academy. Jayde Tucker and Taylor Collins both hit home runs, with Tucker also adding a triple on the afternoon and Collins a double.
    The two combined to go 6-for-8, scored six runs and knocked in five runs.

  • ’Topper baseball knocks off Academy in extras

    ALBUQUERQUE – The challenge for the Los Alamos Hilltopper baseball team heading into the final week-plus of its regular season is to remain viable in the District 2-5A race for second place.
    Wednesday, Los Alamos cleared a big hurdle of that challenge.
    The Hilltoppers came back from a run down late to the district-leading Albuquerque Academy Chargers at Marburger Field to force extra innings.
    Then, in the top of the ninth, Los Alamos came up with three doubles to take a commanding lead and ultimately pull off the upset over the Chargers, 7-4.
    Designated hitter Travis Gonzales looped a fly ball over the head of Academy right fielder Markus Parrish, driving in a pair of runs that would ultimately give the Hilltoppers the win in the top of the ninth. Third baseman Antonio Gonzales doubled in Travis Gonzales one batter later for insurance.
    Instead of Los Alamos dropping another big 2-5A contest, as it did in its district opener March 29 after earning a big lead in extra innings, Hilltopper relief pitcher Rico Zerr came on to pick up the save with little trouble from Academy’s hitters.

  • Church youth to give presentation on Mexico house build trip

    The United Church of Los Alamos and the Universalist Unitarian Church will host a joint program at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, during its services, hosted by the youth.

    The youth were part of the recent delegation that spent their spring break with adult counterparts in Puerto Penasco, Mexico. The group built an incredible three homes in a one-week time period, changing the lives of three Mexico families forever.

    “Our kids in LA are great kids, always enjoy being around them in any setting,” said the Reverend Keith Lewis, the Pastor for Youth and Congregational Ministries, at the United Church. “This bunch especially, no gripes or complaints, just good old fashion sweat and hard work.”

    After a long journey and an overnight stay on the floor of a Phoenix church, the teams crossed the border, unpacked their campsites and prepared for the work ahead. The work includes mixing concrete by hand for the three build sites, followed by framing day, roofing day and stucco day. The final day was a beautiful bilingual passing of the keys to a new home, the first set of keys they have ever owned.

    According to Lewis, their hard work was so well done that teams not only finished their daily projects on time each day, but on some days, even finished early.