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Today's News

  • Security worker's murder charge dropped

    On Friday, Rio Arriba County Sheriff Thomas R. Rodella announced the arrest of Kaiwee Martinez, 35, who was charged with an open count of murder in the Nov. 3, 2012 shooting death of Lawrence Sandoval at the woman’s Alcalde home.

    Securing our Country (SOC), the lab security force that employs Martinez, released the following statement.

    “Kaiwee Martinez is employed by SOC Los Alamos (a subcontractor to LANS, LLC) as an unarmed security officer,” SOC spokesperson Liddie Martinez said. “She has been on leave without pay since the day of the incident in November 2012.

    She has not had access to Los Alamos National Laboratory since that time.”

    “We conducted a comprehensive, detailed investigation into Mr. Sandoval’s homicide over the course of the next 10 weeks,” Rodella said. “Early on in our investigation we determined that the defendant’s account of events preceding the shooting was not credible.”

    It was reported in Saturday’s Albuquerque Journal that District Attorney Angela ‘Spence’ Pacheco dismissed the case against Martinez without prejudice — meaning charges could be refiled by the DA’s office in the future — pending further investigation into the case.

  • Update 01-20-13

    Free admission

    On Monday, visitors may enjoy Bandelier as well as other national parks and monuments throughout the United States free of charge.

    Boy Scouts

    The Los Alamos Boy Scout Museum Society Inc. will hold a community-wide meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the upstairs meeting room, over the Fabulous 50s restaurant, at the American Legion Post 90.

    Bracelet sale

    Chamisa sixth graders will sell bracelets and key chains before school on Tuesday to raise money for field trips. Prices range from $3 to $7.

    Have a news tip?

    Send press releases, photos and videos to laeditor@lamonitor.com or contact the newsroom at 662-4185.

    Ice rink closure

    The Los Alamos County Ice Rink will close one hour early on Feb. 15 to accommodate a private group.  Public skating will be from 1:45-6 p.m. Contact the Ice Rink at 662-4500 with any additional questions.
     

  • Proposal would make trophy poaching a felony

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — The New Mexico Game and Fish Department wants to get tough on poachers who leave the meat of trophy animals behind to rot.
    The department is throwing its support behind legislation that would make such poaching crimes a fourth-degree felony in New Mexico. Currently, these crimes are classified as misdemeanors.
    The department says tougher penalties are needed as a deterrent to stop the waste of the state’s wildlife.
    With a felony conviction, offenders could face 18 months in prison and fines of up to $5,000.
    Over the past two years, conservation officers have investigated more than 200 cases in which big game animals have been unlawfully killed and their carcasses left to rot.

  • Buzzer-beater lifts LA to win

    Against a tough Class 5A opponent, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls basketball team needed all the help it can get Friday night.
    That help came in the form of Anna Scott at the end of each half.
    Scott, a shooting guard for the Hilltoppers, had a rebound-and-putback at the buzzer to end the first half, then came through with the play of the game, hitting a NBA-range 3-pointer as regulation expired, lifting the Hilltoppers to a big win over the Sandia Matadors.
    Scott, on the right side of the 3-point circle, had just enough time to catch and shoot a long-distance 3, which swished through the net to give Los Alamos a 46-43 victory at Griffith Gymnasium.
    Scott, who’d had a relatively quiet night until the fourth quarter, came up with seven points in the quarter, including the game-winning 3.
    Friday’s win over the Matadors (10-4), who went into the ballgame as a top 10-ranked team in 5A was the first coaching victory at Los Alamos for Ann Stewart.
    Stewart, who was given the head coaching job for the Hilltoppers Monday following the surprising mid-season departure of Tarah Logan, said the win was simply a matter of Los Alamos taking what Sandia’s defense was giving.

  • On Schedule 01-20-13

    Tuesday

    Girls basketball: Los Alamos at Bernalillo, C team, 4 p.m.; JV, 5:30 p.m.; varsity, 7 p.m.

    Boys basketball: Santa Fe Indian School at LAMS, seventh grade, 4 p.m.; eighth grade, 5 p.m.

    Wednesday

    Boys basketball: Bernalillo at Los Alamos, C team, 4 p.m.; JV, 5:30 p.m.; varsity, 7 p.m.

    Friday
    Girls basketball: Santa Fe at Los Alamos, C team, 4 p.m.; JV, 5:30 p.m.; varsity, 7 p.m.

    Saturday
    Wrestling: Los Alamos at Aztec Invite, varsity, 9 a.m.

    Swimming and diving: Los Alamos at Artesia Invite, 10 a.m.

    Boys basketball: Los Alamos at Santa Fe, C team, 4 p.m.; JV, 5:30 p.m.; varsity, 7 p.m.

  • Sports Briefs 01-20-13

    LA boys thumped by Sandia

    In its final game before the start of District 2-4A play, the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys basketball team took a shellacking against the Sandia Matadors.
    The Hilltoppers (1-15) fell to the Matadors 62-21 in Albuquerque Friday night.
    The Matadors (11-3) are the third-ranked team in the state in Class 5A.
    It was the most lopsided loss of the season for Los Alamos. Unfortunately, its task gets no easier with the star of District 2-4A play, when it hosts Bernalillo (10-6) Wednesday night.
    The Hilltoppers picked up their only win of the season so far Jan. 4 against Taos, but have lost four straight games by an average margin of more than 25 points.

    Women’s Weekend starts Feb. 8

  • LA wins big at Pecos tourney Saturday

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper wrestling team took five first-place finishes en route to a dominating performance at the Pecos Invitational Saturday.

    Los Alamos picked up 11 top-four finishes, including a sweep of the championships between 160-195 pounds, as it cruised to a big team win. Los Alamos grabbed 223.5 total points, 95.5 points better than its next nearest competitor, St. Michael’s, to take the team title.

    Individually, Chandler Lauritzen, Cory Geyer, Arnoldo Ortiz, Brian Geyer and Diego Madrid picked up championships at the tournament. John Michael Romero at 126 pounds, Lane Saunders at 152 and Peter Brewer at 220 all advanced to the championship round for the Hilltoppers as well.

    More information about the Hilltoppers’ win will be in Tuesday’s Los Alamos Monitor.

  • Jemez Pueblo wants to reclaim land

    Valles Caldera National Preserve is replete with evidence of ancestral villages, sacred and ceremonial sites and shrines of the Jemez people.

    Jemez Pueblo has, in fact, never severed its ties with this ancestral homeland. Jemez people continue to rely on the Caldera for subsistence hunting, forage for livestock, irrigation water, wild plants and trees used for food, medicine and ceremonial objects, timber for construction and firewood and obsidian and chert for stone tools.

    But the pueblo’s ultimate concern centers on trails and sacred areas used by the pueblo’s religious societies, and mineral and hot springs used by medicine societies for curing ailments.

    “The Valles Caldera is our cathedral. It is just as important for us as the Vatican is for the Catholics and as the famous Blue Lake is to Taos Pueblo. It is where the spirits of our ancestors reside and it is our most important spiritual place,” said former Jemez Governor Madalena at a Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing in June, 2010.

    Oral histories say that the image of an eagle with a lightning bolt coming from its beak on Redondo Peak (known as Wav e ma to the Jemez people) was the sign for the tribe to settle there when they migrated from the Four Corners region.

  • Gun legislation surfaces

    First in a two-part series

    In the aftermath of the shootings in Aurora Colo., Newtown Conn. and Taft, Calif. Legislation both for and against gun control has been popping up all over the country.

    As the national debate continues to foment, it was only a matter of time until New Mexico’s recently reconvened state legislature came up with some of its own.

    Rep. Miguel Garcia, D-Bernalillo, recently introduced legislation that he said would tighten up background checks at gun shows and also establishes a state background check system.

    “Our Wild West days are over. Our Wild Bill Cody and Annie Oakley days are over. Our legislation will require background checks for the mentally and criminally adjudicated at gun shows in New Mexico, and for private individual purchases.” The bill is known as HB 77.

    Another piece of proposed legislation is HB 114, sponsored by Rep. Nora Espinoza, R-Roswell, seems to go completely in the opposite direction. It tells the feds to back off — or else.

  • Andrew and Mousie 01-20-13