Singleton, New Mexico judge who ruled over major cases, dies

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Sarah Singleton, a retired district court judge who presided over multiple landmark cases in New Mexico, has died at 70, officials said Friday.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Singleton's death in an email, saying she was "incredibly saddened." A spokesman for the courts said Singleton died on Thursday. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported she died of metastatic endometrial cancer.

"Judge Singleton was a dedicated jurist and highly respected member of the community," Lujan Grisham said.

She was remembered by the governor as being the first New Mexico judge to rule in favor of gay marriage. In 2013,

Singleton had sided with Alexander Hanna and Yon Hudson in deciding that a Santa Fe County clerk must grant the two men a marriage license or appear in court to explain why she should not.

In 2017, Singleton invalidated 10 of Gov. Susana Martinez's vetoes because the former Republican governor had missed deadlines or failed to explain her reasons. That decision allowed piecemeal legislation on economic development, high school curricula and hemp production to take effect.

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