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Albuquerque police: Suspect killed after shooting 3 people
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say Albuquerque police officers shot and killed a suspect after responding to reports of a shooting on the city's northeast side. Police Chief Harold Medina said Monday that two people were injured and a woman was found dead on the street in a residential area. Two officers also were hurt while exchanging gunfire with the suspect, but Medina says their injuries were not life-threatening. Authorities had cordoned off a neighborhood as they warned residents to stay indoors while officers searched the area. Medina says investigators were working to piece together what led to the violence and whether the suspect knew the victims.
VA proposal to close rural health clinics spurs opposition
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has released a list of community-based clinics that it proposes to close in New Mexico, New Hampshire and other rural areas around the country. Some members of Congress vowed immediate opposition Monday, saying the clinics provide the only access to care for thousands of veterans. U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich of New Mexico said the analysis done by the VA has many flaws, including that it is based on data collected before the coronavirus pandemic put a strain on health care systems in New Mexico and elsewhere. It will be up to a special commission to consider the VA's proposal as part of a process that will take several years.
Election audit prompts pushback from New Mexico auditor
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The state auditor is the latest top Democratic official to push back against an independent audit of the 2020 election in one rural New Mexico county. State Auditor Brian Colón's office sent a letter Monday to Otero County commissioners saying the county is deficient in its ability to properly oversee contract compliance. He pointed to a recent contract signed with the private company the county hired to review election records. The letter also says the audit isn't in residents' best interest and amounts to political grandstanding. County Commissioner Couy Griffin says there's no harm in following through with the audit if the state has nothing to hide.
Suspect who wielded gun outside Santa Fe cafe still at large
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Authorities are searching for a man who pulled out a gun at a Santa Fe restaurant when he was denied a free cup of coffee. The Santa Fe New Mexican reports the shooting happened Saturday at Cafe Pasqual's while customers were present. According to the Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office, the suspect was charged for coffee that he was used to getting free. Restaurant staff said he left but returned. He then climbed on top of furniture outside the cafe and showed the gun. Employees and customers hid in the kitchen. When deputies arrived, both the suspect and customers had fled. Authorities are asking for any witnesses to come forward.
Teen cadet at New Mexico Military Institute reported missing
ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a cadet at the New Mexico Military Institute is missing. New Mexico State Police say 15-year-old Peyton Brynn Scarff of Roswell was last seen on campus around 3 p.m. Wednesday and was in her uniform. Police with the Military Institute are asking the public for information to help find Scarff. Authorities say it's still unclear if the teen is a runaway from the public military school that is a four-year high school and two-year junior college.
Man extradited from Mexico to stay jailed until murder trial
ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico state judge in Roswell has ordered that a man extradited from Mexico remain in jail while awaiting trial in the 2020 strangulation killing of the mother of his young son. Judge Thomas Lilley on Friday denied bond for Jorge Rico-Ruvira after state and district prosecutors argued that the 34-year-old man was dangerous and that no conditions of release would protect the community. Rico-Ruvira is charged with murder in the killing of 27-year-old Isela Sanchez. An Amber Alert was issued for their son when the father fled to Mexico, but officials announced last year that the boy had been found safe.
New Mexico woman found guilty in 2018 double murder
LAS CRUCES (AP) — A New Mexico jury has reached a guilty verdict for a female defendant accused of killing her ex-boyfriend with the help of a new boyfriend in 2018. Prosecutors have argued that Cristal Cardenas and Luis Flores tried to hire a hitman to kill the father of Cardenas' daughter, and did it themselves when it didn't work out. His girlfriend was also killed at their home in Garfield, a town in the southern part of the state. The Las Cruces Sun News reports that a jury found Cardenas guilty on Friday. Flores faces a murder trial in April.
New Mexico health official mark two years of pandemic
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. David Scrase observed a moment of silence in remembrance of the 7,050 people who have died in the state since the pandemic began. Scrase marked the two-year anniversary of New Mexico's first confirmed COVID-19 infections during a virtual briefing with reporters Friday. He said new infections and hospitalizations have dropped dramatically in recent weeks. Still, he said COVID-19 is a serious disease and the state is making plans to ensure it will be prepared in the event of another surge caused by a new variant.