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Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 a.m. MST

New Mexico Democrats hold pre-primary nominating convention

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — The Democratic Party of New Mexico traveled to Republican-rich Roswell for a pre-primary nominating convention. Officials introduced the party's slate of candidates for the June 7 primary election, an unofficial launch of the campaign season for contested nominations to serve as attorney general and other offices. Absentee balloting and in-person voting at county clerks' offices begin May 10. At Saturday's nominating convention, party leaders and candidates called for unity and a push to turn out voters in what looks like a challenging November election. In contrast to the Republican Party's recent convention, the Democratic delegates will cast their ballots entirely online or through telephone voting.

Texas boy battling cancer made honorary New Mexico policeman

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — A 10-year-old Texas boy who is battling cancer has been made an honorary police officer in Roswell, New Mexico. Davarjaye "DJ" Daniel of Houston had a swearing-in ceremony Friday with the Roswell Police Department. The boy's family says he has dreamed of being a police officer his whole life and law enforcement agencies across the country have helped that come true. Daniel also is an honorary member of the Chaves County Sheriff's Office, New Mexico State Police, Hagerman Police Department, the New Mexico Mounted Patrol and the Chaves County Detention Center. Theodis Daniel told the Roswell Daily Record that his son is now a member of 289 agencies and counting. The boy was diagnosed in 2018 with brain and spine cancer and undergone 11 surgeries and several other extensive procedures.

Navajo energy company invests in carbon capture effort

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Navajo Transitional Energy Company has invested in another energy company that is aiming to develop a large-scale platform for carbon capture services. The Farmington Daily Times reports that the deal puts NTEC on Enchant Energy Corp.'s board of directors. Enchant Energy wants to take over the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station in northwestern New Mexico later this year after it is abandoned by New Mexico's largest electric utility. But critics have raised concerns about financing and the ability to make carbon capture technology work at the decades-old plant. The Navajo company's investment in Enchant Energy is being criticized by environmentalists.

Woman arrested in crash that killed 2, including officer

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico woman has been arrested after authorities say she caused a crash that killed an officer and retired firefighter and then she lied about having been kidnapped. Authorities say Saturday that 46-year-old Jeannine Jaramillo faces charges including first-degree murder. She had told authorities she was carjacked at knifepoint. Authorities say evidence from the vehicle shows there was only one person inside at the time of the Wednesday crash and that DNA from an airbag belonged to Jaramillo. The collision killed a Santa Fe police officer and a retired firefighter. Jaramillo told KOB-TV that she was abducted and feared for her life. Authorities say she had given a similar account in the past.

New Mexico University suffers shortage of donated cadavers

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Fewer people in New Mexico are donating their bodies to science when they die, making it harder to train medical students preparing for their careers. The University of New Mexico Anatomy Lab said Friday that it needs about 75 donated cadavers each year to train future doctors, but it currently only has 18. Amy Rosenbaum, director of the university's anatomical donations program, says medical students missed out during the early part of the coronavirus pandemic when all teaching was virtual. The pandemic also has affected donations with mortuaries overwhelmed handling deaths and staffing problems, along with transportation issues, she said.

New Mexico governor wants to divest from Russian stocks

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is looking to join other U.S. governors and lawmakers in numerous states who are seeking to add to the financial squeeze on Russia over its war against Ukraine. The Democrat announced Friday that she is urging the directors of the state's permanent funds and two major pension funds for public employees to examine investments that may benefit Russia and its supporters and take steps to divest. The Russian markets have been closed for several days, halting trading on the securities in question. The State Investment Council will likely have to discuss the governor's request as a matter of policy.

Governor signs free college bill, expands coverage

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is signing legislation that will make college even cheaper for more state residents. The New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship Act will cover the cost of tuition and fees. Unlike the existing Lottery Scholarship, it can be used by state residents who haven't been to school for a while or need to pursue a degree or certificate part-time. Lujan Grisham is signing the bill at Western New Mexico University in Silver City. Funding for the measure comes from record-high state revenues, as well as one-time federal pandemic relief money. The new scholarship doesn't have a permanent funding source.

New Mexico regulators refute attorney general's claims

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico utility regulators are refuting allegations by Attorney General Hector Balderas that they aren't pursuing the public interest. In a letter to Balderas, the Public Regulation Commission emphasized the need for teamwork but also corrected what it contends are inaccurate notions by the attorney general's office. Relations between Balderas and the commission have been strained over a rejected merger involving the state's largest electric provider and concerns about possible summer blackouts. Regulators recently cleared the way for Public Service Co. of New Mexico to extend operations of a unit at the coal-fired San Juan power plant in hopes of meeting peak summer demands.