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Today's News

  • State Briefs 12-18-14

    Mom driving van of kids
    pleads not guilty in chase

    ALBUQURQUE (AP) — A Tennessee woman has pleaded not guilty in a chaotic 2013 traffic stop and chase during which a New Mexico State Police officer shot at her minivan full of children.
    KOB-TV reports that 40-year-old Oriana Farrell of Memphis entered the plea Tuesday in Taos to fleeing and other charges filed last month by a grand jury. An appeals court had dismissed previous charges, saying a prosecutor shouldn’t have been involved in excusing a grand jury member.
    The officer shot at Farrell’s van carrying her five children after she twice sped off and was stopped by another officer for speeding. Dashboard video of the shooting gained national attention, and the officer was later fired.
    Defense attorney Alan Maestas has said the charges aren’t justified.

    New Mexico official:
    Flu season could be difficult

  • Update 12-18-14

    Service

    Bethlehem Lutheran Church at 2390 North Road will host a candelight service at 7 p.m. today. For more information visit bethluth.com.

    Skate With Santa

    Los Alamos County is sponsoring its Skate with Santa, which is scheduled for Saturday afternoon and Sunday afternoon at the county’s ice rink. Call 662-4500 for more information.

    Enforcement

    Los Alamos Police Department will be conducting traffic enforcement, focusing on accident-related violations to include seatbelt enforcement for the holidays. Officers will also be on the lookout for impaired drivers this holiday season. To report potentially impaired drivers, dial #DWI, or #394 or call LAPD directly at 662-8222. Motorists are asked to allow extra time to get to and from destinations.

    Swearing In

    The public is invited to the official swearing-in ceremony for incoming officials. That ceremony will take place Friday in council chambers. It will begin at 3 p.m. Light refreshments will be served following the ceremony.

  • Los Alamos names new laboratory Fellows for 2014

    The Los Alamos National Laboratory Fellows list expanded by five this week as a new group of high achievers was named.
    The honorees this year are Christopher L. Fryer, Herbert O. Funsten, John C. Gordon, Jaqueline L. Kiplinger and David S. Moore.
    “The sustained scientific excellence demonstrated by the work of Chris, Herb, John, Jaqueline and David exemplifies the outstanding people and capabilities we apply to today’s national security mission, and positions the laboratory to be prepared to meet future challenges,” said laboratory director Charlie McMillan. “I applaud each of them for being recognized by their peers for considerable high-level achievements and congratulate them for this very distinguished and honorable career milestone.”
    The committee ranked this year’s nominations on several factors, including sustained, high-level achievements in programs of importance to LANL, fundamental or important discoveries that have led to widespread use, having become a recognized authority in the field, including outside recognition and an outstanding record of publications.

  • Clerk's office wraps up land commissioner recount

    Los Alamos County Clerk Sharon Stover announced today the final totals for the recount of the state land commissioner race.
    The results for the statewide recount for the race, which ended with a separation between Republican Aubrey Dunn and Democrat incumbent Ray Powell of just 704 votes last month, was expected to be presented to the state’s Canvass Board today.
    Powell, who lost the November election, but by less than .5 percent of the total of ballots cast in the state, actually pulled out a narrow victory in Los Alamos County. Powell finished with 3,782 votes to Dunn’s 3,743, a difference of just 39 votes.
    In the recount, which was ordered by Secretary of State Dianna Duran last week, Powell picked up an extra vote in Los Alamos County, while Dunn picked up an additional two votes.
    Stover said the slight differences were due to checking voter intent — some of the ovals on the ballot were not appropriately filled in, but intent was clearly discernable for members of the recount board.
    Winning the county, however, didn’t help Powell’s overall numbers in the state. The Secretary of State’s unofficial total, heading into the Canvass Board meeting, was 249,993 for Dunn and 249,337 for Powell.

  • Council approves Canyon Rim Trail Alternative 3

    In additional business Tuesday night, Los Alamos County Council approved the Canyon Rim Trail Alignment Alternative 3. The vote allows staff to move forward on an extension connecting the existing trail to a new section constructed by Smith’s Marketplace.
    The approved alternative will cross DP Canyon near Fire Station No. 6, avoiding residential neighborhoods, which the other two options would have impacted. It also has the lowest cost, with an estimated preliminary cost of $1,745,000.
    The county received a U.S. Department of Transportation grant for $75,000 to design the trail extension, and has been awarded an additional $212,000 for construction. Construction of the trail will commence in 2015.
    Council unanimously approved a change to the county code that will allow the hospital to build a heliport and permit pet training or breeding kennels in zones that allow veterinary services. Both changes are restricted to certain zones and require a special use permit.
    Rob and Kathy Hipwood were given a proclamation honoring their girls’ cross country National Coaches of the Year award and declaring Dec. 17 as “Rob & Kathy Hipwood Day.”
    Outgoing Chair Geoff Rodgers and Councilor Frances Berting were recognized for their years of service on council. Their terms end Dec. 31.

  • Two sought in separate embezzlement schemes

    Police recently issued an arrest warrant for an employee who worked at Smith’s Grocery on Trinity Avenue.
    The employee, a cashier named Theresa J. Watson that worked at the Los Alamos store, is accused of stealing about a thousand dollars through a scheme that involved voiding out items she scanned through her register, according to store management.
    Her managers caught onto her scheme in September, when they noted Watson was racking up a high number of voided transactions at her station.
    According to police, a videotape revealed how she carried out her plan. Watson would scan in all of the customer’s items, then she would then give that price to the customer.
    Then, when the customer was not looking, Watson would void out an item, but the customer would still pay the full price for their groceries and other items.
    The management also noted Watson only did this with cash transactions, allegedly in order to better cover her tracks.
    Another odd detail that gave away Watson’s embezzlement scheme is that Watson would total the transactions in such a way that the customers always seemed to have exact change. Management apparently recorded over a hundred transactions that occurred this way.

  • YMCA hosts junior wrestling

    The Family YMCA of Los Alamos will host its junior wrestling program starting Jan. 5.
    The program is for boys and girls in grades 1-6, although those in grade 7 and 8 with no previous wrestling experience are also welcomed.
    Price for participation is $60 for YMCA members, $90 for nonmembers. For information, call 662-3100.
     

  • Ski Report 12-18-14

    Angel Fire
    23-inch base. 3 inches of new snow reported. 11 trails and 3 lifts open.

    Pajarito
    9-inch base. 1 inch of new snow reported. Will open when conditions permit.

    Red River
    20-inch base. 1 inch of new snow reported. 12 trails and 4 lifts open.

    Sandia Peak
    No base report. 7 inches of new snow reported. Will open when conditions permit.

    Sipapu
    26-inch base. 4 inches of new snow reported. 20 trails and 3 lifts open.

    Ski Apache
    25 inch base. 4 inches of new snow reported. 2 trails and 2 lifts open.

    Ski Santa Fe
    42-inch base. 8 inches of new snow reported. 22 trails and 3 lifts open.

    Taos
    46-inch base. 2 inches of new snow reported. 22 trails and 8 lifts open.

    Chama XC
    18-inch base. No new snow reported.

    Enchanted Forest XC

    12-inch base. No new snow reported. Scheduled to open Saturday.

  • 'Topper boys, girls return to action at home this weekend

    After getting a little bit of time off for finals, the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys and girls basketball teams will get back to action this weekend.
    Neither Los Alamos team has had a scheduled contest since Saturday, which was the final round of their two tournaments in Albuquerque.
    Los Alamos’ boys will host the Rio Grande Ravens Friday night at Griffith Gymnasium. Game time is 7 p.m.
    Then, at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, the Hilltopper girls will host Artesia.
    This will be the second consecutive year the Hilltoppers and Bulldogs have played each other. Last season, Los Alamos’ last game at the Joe Armijo Invitational in Albuquerque was nixed due to travel conditions, leaving the team scrambling to find another game to fill a hole in its schedule.
    The only taker for Los Alamos’ rescheduled game was Artesia, which is in the extreme southeast part of the state. For last season’s game, the two teams split the travel difference and played that contest in Vaughn.
    This year, the Bulldogs are making the long trek to Griffith Gymnasium.
    So far, the Bulldogs are 4-1 heading into their Friday night contest at Belen. They have wins over two different Class 5A opponents, including having beaten Santa Teresa twice, as well as Moriarty.

  • Be There 12-18-14

    Today
    Science on Tap. 5:30 p.m. at the Manhattan Project restaurant. Sean Dolan, a graduate research assistant at Los Alamos National Laboratory and Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Oklahoma, will talk about obsidian and the work that archaeologists are doing with it.

    White Rock Family Friendly Film Series. 6:30 p.m. at White Rock Town Hall. “Arthur Christmas.” Come at 5:30 p.m. for arts and crafts projects.

    Candlelight Service. 7 p.m. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 2390 North Road. For more information visit bethluth.com.

    “Sacrifice and Service: The American Military Family.” Exhibit runs daily through Jan. 2 at the upstairs art gallery at Mesa Public Library.