Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. MDT
- ASIAN-OWNED BUSINESSES-SECURITY
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Albuquerque's Asian American community is testing a new way to bolster security for Asian-owned businesses in the wake of two deadly shootings. KOAT-TV reported Sunday that an Albuquerque start-up is trying out an online service that connects armed security guards with Asian-owned businesses. Businesses would report suspicious activity to "toServo." The service puts them in touch with a private security team. There are hopes to expand its use by the end of the year. The city's Asian community has been on edge since shootings at two Asian-owned spas. The female owner of one was shot and killed in January. A second woman died the same way a month later.
- TEXAS DUMPSTER FIRE-BODIES
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Prosecutors in Texas say they will seek the death penalty for a man who authorities have said confessed to killing five people, including three whose dismembered bodies were found in a burning dumpster last year. The Tarrant County district attorney's office said Monday that they've filed the paperwork to seek the death penalty for 41-year-old Jason Thornburg. He was arrested in September on a charge of capital murder in the deaths of three people whose bodies were found in a burning dumpster in Fort Worth. Thornburg's arrest warrant says he confessed to killing those three as well as his roommate and girlfriend, a Navajo woman from New Mexico who went missing after traveling to Arizona with him.
THOMASVILLE, Ala. (AP) — A handful of U.S. hospitals are facing a financial crisis that officials say was caused by the federal government's rules for pandemic relief money. A trio of hospitals in Alabama, Kansas and New Mexico say they're not getting as much assistance as other hospitals because they're so new they can't prove financial losses from before the pandemic. In rural southwest Alabama, Thomasville Regional Medical Center says it's in danger of closing after just two years. Federal health officials say all three hospitals have gotten some money from the CARES Act, and no health providers are getting all their losses reimbursed.
- SPRING WILDFIRES
Lightning has sparked a few new small fires in the drought-stricken Southwest. But the thunderstorms brought welcome rain Monday to the monster blaze that's been churning for a month in New Mexico. It's now the largest in the state's recorded history. The fire east of Santa Fe and south of Taos has destroyed at least 260 homes and burned an area about one-quarter the size of Delaware. Forecasters say crews should have another chance Tuesday to to make progress battling the flames from the ground and the air. Officials at another big fire west of Santa Fe are preparing to relax evacuation orders around the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
- CLIMATE-GOVERNMENT BUDGETS
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Major energy producing states from Alaska to Pennsylvania are reaping a windfall from soaring oil and natural gas prices, stoked by the war in Ukraine and the U.S.-led ban on Russian oil imports. The boost threatens to increase state and local governments' entrenched reliance on fossil fuels in their budgets, revenue that pays for schools, roads and policing. Officials say they realize the need to move toward cleaner energy sources that don't contribute to climate change, but also say they will need a way to replace the tax revenue their states and communities receive from fossil fuel extraction.
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Authorities have announced the discovery of a major drug smuggling tunnel — running about the length of a six football fields — from Mexico to a warehouse in an industrial area in the U.S. The cross-border tunnel from Tijuana to the San Diego area was built in one of the most fortified stretches of the border, illustrating the limitations of border walls. The tunnel discovered Friday includes electricity, ventilation, railway cars and reinforced walls. It may signal a shift from previous tunnels that were used to smuggle marijuana. Six people from Southern California were charged with conspiracy to distribute cocaine.