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

Jun 7, 2019

DA studying Institute of American Indian Arts assault claims(Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican, http://www.santafenewmexican.com)SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Prosecutors say they are reviewing allegations of sexual assault made by a student at the Institute of American Indian Arts.The Santa Fe New Mexican reports the District Attorney's Office in Santa Fe said this week it will look into allegations made by an unnamed student at the Santa Fe school.Last month, a detailed, explicit description of the alleged April 9 sexual assault by a male staffer appeared in flyers posted on campus and on social media. The allegations prompted outrage from students, the school's alumni council and a Pueblo women's activist group.The flyers also alleged a pattern of harassment and inappropriate messages from another male employee.School spokesman Eric Davis declined to comment, saying the school was waiting for law enforcement reports.No arrests have been made.___


New Mexico State earns spot at college rodeo finalsLAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — The men's and women's rodeo teams from New Mexico State University are headed to Wyoming for the College National Finals Rodeo.The university announced Thursday that both teams finished second in the Grand Canyon region this season, qualifying them for the finals.Head coach Logan Corbett doesn't want to make any predictions. He says anything is possible during finals since the best student athletes from across the country will be participating.The men's team has six riders who will compete for points. The women's team has six but only four compete for points.New Mexico State University has made several appearances at the finals in recent years but has not had a national champion since 2008. This will be Corbett's fourth time taking a team to the finals.


Independent feature 'Silk Road' to film in New MexicoSANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The independent feature "Silk Road" will be filling in New Mexico this summer.The state film office says the work will happen in Santa Fe and Albuquerque through mid-July.The film will be directed by Tiller Russell, who recently moved to New Mexico. Russell says he's thrilled to have the opportunity to shoot a film in his new home state with a talented cast and crew.Stars include Jason Clarke, Nick Robinson, Alexandra Shipp and Cole Sprouse.A true crime epic, the movie centers on Ross Ulbricht, who created the underground drug-selling website Silk Road.Ulbricht's 2013 arrest shut down what prosecutors described as an unprecedented one-stop online shopping mall where the supply of drugs was virtually limitless, enabling drug dealers to expand their markets from the sidewalk to cyberspace.


New Mexico public employee pension plans could miss target(Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com)ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (AP) — New Mexico's pension program for public employees is not expected to hit its investment target this year.The Albuquerque Journal reported Thursday that the executive director of the Public Employees Retirement Association told lawmakers Wednesday that missing the target could have a serious impact.Wayne Propst says investment returns this year may come in at 3% to 5%, not the standard 7.25% target used by many plans in the nation.The association handles a $15 billion pension fund.Propst says that if the state program achieves a 5% return this year, the plan's projected ratio in 2043 would drop from 74% to 69%.Officials at the state's Educational Retirement Board say it is too early to predict whether their pension fund will reach the 7.25% target this year.


New Mexico expands medical marijuana programSANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico is expanding its medical cannabis program to include people suffering from adverse effects of opioid use.Health Secretary Kathyleen Kunkel on Thursday added opioid use disorder to the list of qualifying conditions for patients who can participate in the program.She also approved the addition of Alzheimer's disease, autism spectrum disorder and three degenerative neurological disorders.New Mexico joins at least eight states — from Maine to California — that already recognize opioid dependency as a qualifying condition, either explicitly or within the bounds of significant medical conditions.Opening up New Mexico's program to people struggling with opioid use and addiction was among the campaign pledges of first-year Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.There are now more than 73,000 patients enrolled in New Mexico's program, most for chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder.


US opens new mass shelter in Texas for migrant childrenThe federal government is opening a new mass shelter for migrant children near the U.S-Mexico border and is considering housing children on three military bases to add 3,000 more beds to the overtaxed system in the coming weeks.Migrant children will soon be sent from the border to a complex once used to house oil field workers in Carrizo Springs, Texas.Office of Refugee Resettlement spokesman Mark Weber says all the new facilities will be considered temporary emergency facilities, so they won't be subject to state child welfare licensing requirements.The expansion comes after the government announced it would cut recreation, English-language courses and legal services for the 13,200 migrant children in its care.Attorneys said that violates a settlement that requires the government to provide education to children in custody.


Audit finds deficiencies with Albuquerque postal facilitiesALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General has issued recommendations following an investigation into maintenance, safety and staffing concerns at postal facilities in New Mexico's largest city.The inspector general's audit was prompted by requests from members of the state's congressional delegation.Investigators found deficiencies at all 13 postal facilities in Albuquerque that were part of the audit. The problems ranged from minor oversight infractions to more serious structural issues.Officials with the postal workers union say the findings confirmed complaints made over the past year about dilapidated and unsanitary conditions and late mail delivery for certain customers.U.S. Sen. Tom Udall says filling vacancies and maintaining safe, secure facilities must be a top priority for the service. He plans to follow up to ensure the recommendations are implemented.


Authorities ID 2 hospitalized after fireworks explosionROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Authorities have identified two firefighters critically injured in a fireworks explosion in New Mexico that remains under investigation.The explosion Wednesday in Roswell injured a dozen firefighters at a fireworks storage area. A city spokesman says 46-year-old Jeff Stroble and 36-year-old Robert "Hoby" Bonham were hospitalized, while others were treated at the scene.Authorities do not know what prompted the fireworks to explode as firefighters were moving them for an upcoming Fourth of July show.Spokesman Todd Wildermuth said in a statement that Stroble has been with the Roswell Fire Department for 17 years. Bonham has worked for the department for 18 years.They are being treated at a hospital in Lubbock, Texas, about 173 miles (or 278 kilometers) east of Roswell.New Mexico State Police are investigating the explosion.