Today's News

  • Motion hearing set for Monday

    A documents request from attorneys representing a plaintiff in a sexual harassment suit against Los Alamos County will be heard Monday in Santa Fe District Court.
    Former Los Alamos Police Detective Paige Early is suing the county for alleged sexual discrimination when she was a detective on the force and Wayne Torpy was police chief.
    The complaint is part of a larger lawsuit filed by former LAPD Commander Randy Foster, who is suing the county for alleged wrongful termination for how he disciplined Officer Brian Schamber.
    Several years ago, when Schamber was still on the force, he allegedly started acting strangely.
    Schamber’s alleged erratic behavior while on the job was brought to Foster’s attention by Early, who was Schamber’s patrol partner at the time of the alleged incidents. Early and Foster are represented by Santa Fe attorneys Linda Hemphill and George Geran.
    Former LAPD Commander Scott Mills, also a plaintiff in the suit, alleges the county forced him into retirement over his role in how Schamber was disciplined.

  • Silva-Bañuelos named park leader

    National Park Service Intermountain Region Director Sue Masica announced Thursday that Jorge Silva-Bañuelos has been named superintendent of the Valles Caldera National Preserve.
    Silva-Bañuelos, a native New Mexican, has served as executive director of the Valles Caldera trust since May 2014, but his familiarity with the preserve began much earlier.
    During eight years working for former Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., Silva-Bañuelos drafted Senate Bill 285, the legislation Bingaman introduced to place the preserve under the auspices of the National Park Service. Silva-Bañuelos also oversaw policy matters and worked to secure funding for the preserve.
    From 2007-12, Silva-Bañuelos served on the staff of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, where he handled New Mexico public land, natural resource and conservation policy.
    From 2012-14, Silva-Bañuelos was special assistant to the assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the Department of the Interior.

  • Schedule of Public Works projects set for Los Alamos

    Note: For more information about the projects listed below, please email lacpw@lacnm.us, call 662-8150, or visit the “Projects” link at www.losalamosnm.us. Please slow down and use caution within the construction work zones. Please note the below information is based on a schedule provided by the contractors and may change due to weather or other delays.
    Western Area
    Improvements Phase 3:
    Paving operations will begin on Monday, Sept. 21 on 43rd Street (north). Residents are asked to park vehicles in their driveways during paving hours.
    Work hours will begin 8 a.m. Residents can expect flagging operations. Crew members will be available to escort residents through the work zone if emergencies arise.
    20th Street/Fuller Lodge Improvements:
    The north bound lane will remain closed through Wednesday. On Thursday, the contractor will change the traffic control to allow for paving on the south bound lane. Motorists will use the north bound lane. Signs will be in place to help guide motorists through the detour. To access local businesses please follow detour signs.
    On Friday, the contractor plans to close 20th Street north of the Deacon Street intersection to the parking lot across from the Teen Center. This will allow for the contractor to construct new concrete pedestrian crosswalks.

  • L.A. man faces 3 sex abuse charges

    A 38-year-old Los Alamos County man is facing three counts of sexual contact with a minor, a second-degree felony.
    According to Los Alamos Police, the man allegedly fondled a child between 13 and 18 years old. In late May, the minor reportedly had some questions about sex and sexuality and went to the suspect to talk. The suspect reportedly told the minor he would help (the minor) … and asked if the (alleged victim) was “uncomfortable being naked around him.”
    The minor reported physical contact began to escalate between them, with the suspect allegedly fondling the minor posed in various positions. At one point, the man is accused of massaging, then biting, the minor. Court records show, in response to the minor’s question about the bite, the man said “because he owned the alleged victim,” according to court records.
    According to interviews with counselors at the Solace Crisis Center in Santa Fe, the minor said at one time the suspect, during the middle of the night, asked to “cuddle.” The minor complied, and the man asked the minor to remove underwear.

  • New Mexico official could face prison time if convicted

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — One of New Mexico's highest ranking elected officials could face prison time and thousands of dollars in fines if convicted of charges that she allegedly misused campaign donations for personal gain.

    The possible punishment came into focus Friday after prosecutors filed an amended complaint against Secretary of State Dianna Duran in district court.

    They also submitted arguments as to why the case should be heard in Santa Fe after Duran's attorney challenged the court's jurisdiction.

    The two-term Republican is accused of funneling campaign donations into personal accounts, filing false campaign finance reports and withdrawing cash at casinos.

    She has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

    The dozens of misdemeanors she faces carry possible punishments of less than a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The more serious felonies carry three-year prison terms and $5,000 fines.

  • W. Va. State Rep. Blair to visit UNM-LA Saturday

    The public is invited to meet the nation’s youngest elected state official at the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos Saturday.
    West Virginia State Representative Saira Blair will be at UNM-LA Student Center, building 2 from 1-3 p.m. for a “meet and greet” with free refreshments. The event is sponsored by the Republican Party of Los Alamos and the Los Alamos Federated Women.  
    Blair, a freshman studying finance at West Virginia University, defeated Democratic Party incumbent Layne Diehl in November 2014 with 63 percent of the vote. She won the Republican primary, at 17.
    Blair will also speak at the Republican Party Constitution Day dinner at Cottonwood on the Greens Saturday evening. Fore more information visit losalamosgop.com.

  • Tuning up to United Way drive
  • LA to team with P&G in initiative on clean energy

    Clean energy manufacturing efforts will get a boost, thanks to a new national laboratory-industry collaboration pilot announced this week by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory and consumer products company Procter & Gamble will form one of the seven ‘innovation pairs’ working to bring sustainable ideas from some of the nations top scientists into the day-to-day world of manufacturing.
    “Los Alamos plans to coordinate with P&G to explore industry-ready innovations and cutting-edge scientific capabilities that could benefit manufacturing within household brands such as Tide, Bounty, Pantene, and Pampers.  The goal will be to select tangible projects that will help P&G meet their long-term sustainability goals, ultimately improving the environmental footprint of the products their consumers use,” said Melissa Fox of Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Applied Energy Program Office.

  • Metzger’s Mobil and Auto Repair to close

    Metzger Stores, LLC recently announced that it’s going to be focusing more on it’s retail hardware business, which means the Metzger’s Mobil and Metzger’s Auto Repair Shop at 1399 Diamond Drive will be closing Sept. 30.  
    “...as the needs of the community have evolved over the last few years it has become apparent that our focus should now be on our Metzger’s Do It Best Hardware stores,” said store owner Greg Metzger in a written statement.
    The Metzger’s in White Rock will remain open, but it too will stop selling gasoline, though it will continue to sell propane. Also, said Metzger, they plan on transforming the White Rock Metzger’s gas pump area of the store into an outdoor display area.
    “While this is bittersweet on one hand, Metzger said in a written press release, “we are excited about the opportunities this change will provide us going forward to grow our business as we continue to evolve to meet the needs of the Los Alamos and White Rock communities.”

  • Bear not found, hikers are urged to be vigilant

    Sure… you could go hiking on Canyon de Valle Trail, but these days you’re going to have to be extra careful.
    New Mexico Wildlife Officials have wrapped up their investigation of a recent confrontation between a jogger and a female bear recently, but have posted signs warning trail users to be extra vigilant while on the trail.
    A 56-year-old Los Alamos man was on the trail last Wednesday evening jogging around 7 p.m when he encountered a female bear and her cub.
     According to New Mexico Fish and Game officials, the cub ran up a tree. The man then tried to scare the bear away. The bear charged, knocking him down and seriously mauling him in the process. The bear then abruptly stopped its attack and moved off with its cub.
    Though he suffered deep lacerations to his hands and head, the man was able to walk out to NM 502, where he flagged down a passing motorist who took him to the Los Alamos Medical Center.
    The entrance to the trail is located just a quarter of a mile west of the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Emergency Operations Center on West Jemez Road, near where the road intersects with NM 4.
    The man is reportedly in stable condition with serious injuries at Christus St. Vincent Hospital.