Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 5:20 p.m. MST

Dec 2, 2019

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. Rep. and Democratic Senate candidate Ben Ray Luján is affirming his commitment to preserving abortion rights for women. The six-term congressman said Monday in a statement that he will fight against attempts to weaken the right of women to make their own reproductive health decisions. Luján is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination to succeed retiring Sen. Tom Udall.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Sandia National Laboratories has chosen a former lab executive as its next director. James Peery's appointment was announced Monday. He will succeed Stephen Younger, who will retire at the end of the year. Peery was selected following a national search that included a review of more than 80 candidates.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A team of researchers is getting federal funding to analyze perishable artifacts as part of an effort to better understand early inhabitants of the caves in and around southeastern New Mexico and West Texas. Officials say the region is under-researched and the $200,000 grant from the Bureau of Land Management will help fund more work in the Guadalupe Mountains.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's largest city is taking more heat for flaws in its crime statistics. The Albuquerque Journal reports that the numbers released in July and at the end of 2018 have been revised dramatically to include many more incidents than were reported initially. The Associated Press first reported problems with the data in October, as city officials blamed a lack of staffing in the records unit that reviews the numbers.


LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — Dona Ana County Sheriff Kim Stewart says a deputy is doing "remarkably well" after his patrol car rolled over. Stewart said Sunday that 31-year-old deputy Christopher Patton was responding to a call for help from another deputy when his Ford Crown Victoria rolled Saturday night. Patton was taken to a hospital in the Las Cruces area and later to University Medical Center in El Paso for treatment of head trauma. Patton has two years of experience with the sheriff's office.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — From taco stands to toxic waste, environmental regulators are tasked with inspecting tens of thousands of businesses, restaurants and industrial sites every year, but demand has outpaced the number of available inspectors. New Mexico's environment secretary says state lawmakers need to make a bigger investment in his agency to ensure public safety. The Legislature is expecting another budget surplus when it meets to consider such proposals in January.


LAS VEGAS, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico State Police says an inmate escaped Saturday from the San Miguel County Detention Center in Las Vegas. The State Police said 22-year-old Felix Romero of Las Vegas broke a window and walked away from the facility Saturday.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The number of domestic violence incidents in New Mexico has remained steady over the last three years despite an increase in funding for services. Analysts with the Legislative Finance Committee also found that the number of clients receiving services over the same period has dropped. According to their report, law enforcement in 2018 responded to almost 19,000 reports of domestic violence, roughly the same as in 2014.