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Local and State News

Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 9:20 p.m. MDT


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico authorities say one student was killed and another was taken into custody following a shooting at a middle school near downtown Albuquerque during the lunch hour Friday. Police said that the shooting was an isolated incident between two Washington Middle School students who were believed to be about 13 years old. It was not immediately clear what led to the attack. The school was locked down and parents were asked to pick up their children. School officials called it a terrible day for the community. Albuquerque is on pace to shatter its homicide record this year.


TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico man whose young son was found dead in the Rio Grande River days after the man was seen taking the boy to the riverbank has been arrested on charges, including child abuse leading to death. New Mexico State Police announced the arrest of Shaquille Ferguson Sr. of Truth or Consequences in the death of 5-year-old Shaquille Ferguson Jr. on Friday. State police have been investigating since June 18, when the boy's grandmother came into the Truth or Consequences state police office saying she hadn't seen the boy for weeks. The boy's body was found in the river the next day. 


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Two Phoenix men have been sentenced to lengthy terms in federal prison for trafficking methamphetamine from Arizona for sale in New Mexico. The U.S. Attorney's Office in Albuquerque announced Friday that 67-year-old Arturo Munoz of Phoenix was sentenced to eight years in prison. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and distributing methamphetamine. Phoenix resident Ricardo Osornio, 44, previously received more than five years in prison. The two men were arrested in March 2019 after police in Lordsberg, N.M., stopped their vehicle on Interstate 10 and discovered more than 2 kilograms of meth. They planned to sell it in Deming, N.M. 


ESPANOLA, N.M. (AP) — A man wanted for pointing a gun at a New Mexico State Police officer during a June encounter has been arrested. State police said Friday that they were working with police in Espanola to arrested the man on June 14 in connection with a recent stabbing when he got out of a vehicle and pointed a gun at a state police officer. The officer fired at the man but he ran away and escaped. State police and officers from Espanola followed numerous tips over the summer as they searched for the 37-year-old Chamita resident. He was finally located Wednesday in La Mesilla and arrested after a standoff.


FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — A detention officer at the jail in San Juan County has been charged with multiple counts of having sexual contact with an inmate and with bringing contraband into the jail. The county sheriff's office said Friday that it was called to investigate early this week after an inmate at the adult detention center in Farmington reported the crime. Detectives investigated and arrested 23-year-old Kendall F. Begay after determining he had sexual contact with a female inmate six times. Begay has been fired and faces multiple counts of sexual contact with an inmate by a person in a position of authority.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A special enrollment period for health insurance on the state exchange is coming to a close on Sunday. Federal pandemic relief is providing financial assistance with health care insurance premiums for New Mexico residents with moderate incomes or living on the cusp of poverty. Low- or zero-premium policies area available to the currently uninsured as well as enrolled exchange members who re-enroll by the Sunday deadline. Open enrollment typically takes place only in November and December at the insurance exchange known as beWellnm. There are five insurance carriers that offer coverage in every county in the state.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Among four major cities in New Mexico, the state capital of Santa Fe was the fastest growing over the past decade. The Census Bureau on Thursday released a trove of demographic data on how the U.S. population changed between 2010 and 2020. The data show that Santa Fe grew by 19,558 people to a population of nearly 88,000, not including outlying areas. That represents a 29% population increase. By comparison, Albuquerque grew by less than 4%. New Mexico mimicked national trends in becoming more urban. The state's under-18 population shrank. And the state's housing supply grew faster than its population.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Lt. Gov. Howie Morales says the state is stepping in to ensure a timely chile harvest after growers and producers raised concerns about an inadequate supply of labor. Morales says the state will funnel up to $5 million in federal pandemic relief toward enhanced wages for farmers who harvest New Mexico's renowned green and red chile crop in the late summer and early fall. Republican state Sen. Crystal Diamond on Thursday applauded the move to help farmers. Some Republican state legislators blame the labor shortage on generous unemployment benefits, while Morales says the problem predates the pandemic.