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Local and State News

Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. MDT

  • Albuquerque police respond to 3rd homicide case of weekend

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Police in Albuquerque say they are investigating their third homicide case of the weekend. They say officers were called out around 2 a.m. Sunday after a man was found unresponsive and with trauma to his body. Police say the man was taken to a hospital, where he later died from his injuries.  His name and age haven't been released yet. On Saturday morning, police were called to a southeast Albuquerque neighborhood about a man found dead outside a residence.  Officers also were called to a southeast Albuquerque apartment complex where a person was found dead Saturday evening.  

  • New Mexico's largest utilities to resume normal billing

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Tens of thousands of people in New Mexico who are behind on their gas and electric bills could lose power as soon as mid-August. The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission prevented utilities from disconnecting service over unpaid bills during much of the pandemic. The moratorium for investor-owned and large gas companies ended in May but has a 90-day transition period. The soonest customers could be cut off is Aug. 12. Utilities say shutoffs are a last resort and would happen only after customers receive multiple past-due notices. The utilities and the state also have financial assistance for people struggling to pay their bills.

  • 74-year-old New Mexico woman is accused of killing husband

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a 74-year-old New Mexico woman has been accused of fatally shooting her husband and wounding another person after a night of heavy drinking. The Albuquerque Journal reported Sunday that Sheryl Graeb is jailed on suspicion of an open count of murder, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and negligent use of a deadly weapon. Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office deputies responded around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday to a home about 20 miles south of Santa Fe. A neighbor called 911 to say she found a woman in her yard with a shoulder wound.  The victim told deputies she had been shot by Graeb and that woman also allegedly shot her 75-year-old husband, Kenneth Graeb.

  • Navajo Nation president: Some relaxing guard against COVID

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — The Navajo Nation on Saturday reported 25 additional COVID-19 cases and three more deaths as officials said some tribal members are foregoing needed precautions to ward off spread of the coronavirus. Tribal President Jonathan Nez says many of the new cases on the Navajo Nation "are due to family and social gatherings where people let their guard down and don't wear masks." Nez notes that the highly contagious delta variant is spreading quickly in many states and says people visiting other households should wear masks and encourage others to do so.  The Navajo Nation includes parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah.

  • Flood watches in US West as mudslides close major interstate

DENVER, Colo. (AP) — Colorado officials say mudslides caused "extreme damage" to a major interstate, leaving it clogged with boulders and rocks and no word on when it might reopen. Forecasters Sunday warned of the potential for more flash floods across the Rocky Mountain and Great Basin regions. Wildfires across the West have left many hillsides more susceptible to erosion. Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon, Colorado, was hit by flash flooding that left lanes in both directions snarled by logs, boulders and other debris from a burn scar left by a 2020 wildfire. Flood watches were in effect for portions of Colorado, Utah Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington state. 

  • Agency officials OK restoration plan for forest, grasslands

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. Forest Service officials in New Mexico have approved a plan for the restoration of wetlands and areas along waterways in the Carson, Cibola and Santa Fe national forests and the Kiowa National Grasslands. The Santa Fe National Forest reports that plan is intended to enhance wildlife habitat, watershed health and water quality while countering the effects of climate change, wildfires, grazing, urbanization, recreation and invasive species. The approval enables Forest Service officials to implement various projects. Those include ones to plant riparian vegetation, relocate or close certain roads and trails and restore channels, springs and seeps. 

  • Carson National Forest cleans up after Rainbow Family event

TAOS, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Forest Service says extensive cleanup and environmental rehabilitation activities have been conducted following a large, informal gathering attended by thousands of people in a remote area of the Carson National Forest in northern New Mexico. Officials estimate that 5,000 people attended the dispersed camping and recreational event. The event was staged in late June and early July by a group known as the Rainbow Family of Living Light. Officials say the group didn't apply for a use permit for the gathering but worked with the Forest Service after the event to clean up and rehabilitate the site. 

  • To get shots in arms, governments turn to money in pockets

Millions of people in the U.S. who haven't gotten the COVID-19 vaccine could soon have a new reason to roll up their sleeves: money in their pockets. President Joe Biden is calling on states and local governments to join those that already are handing out dollars for shots. New York, the nation's biggest city, started doling out $100 awards on Friday. The president and health officials are betting that the financial incentive will spur hesitant people to get the shot just as the contagious and potentially more powerful delta variant sweeps through parts of the country and as the number of daily inoculations falls sharply from its April high.