Here’s a look at today’s headlines:
During a special session meeting on Monday, the Luna County Board of Commissioners placed three county service employees on paid administrative leave until criminal complaints have been determined. County Manager, Ira Pearson, in addition to county director of maintenance Billy Ruiz, and maintenance employee, Jose Contreras, are the focus of an investigation involving county employees being directed to engage in plumbing work at the home of the county manager. The criminal complaint also includes the use of a Luna County credit card to purchase materials in Las Cruces last November. In addition, Maintenance Supervisor, Elliot Orozco, is included in the complaint, and has resigned from his position with the county as of July 26th.
The New Mexico Public Education Department has released school grades for 2018. In the Cobre Consolidated School District, the grades remained the same from 2017 for all schools and are as follows: Bayard Elementary with a D; Central Elementary with a B; Hurley Elementary scored a C; San Lorenzo Elementary with a A; Snell Middle School with a C; and Cobre High School with a C. In the Lordsburg District, the scores are as follows: Central Elementary was graded an F from a B last year; R.V Traylor Elementary received a B; Dugan-Tarango Middle School received an F grade from a D last year; and Lordsburg High School scored a C, the same as last year. We will report additional school grades in our Monday news segment.
On Tuesday morning, the Catron County Sheriff’s Office was contacted to respond to an incident in which an ATV was stolen from a residence on U.S 60 near the New Mexico/Arizona border. Later identified as Everett Lee Husted, Jr., of Osceola. Iowa, the suspect had stolen the ATV, pointed a rifle at the owner and then escaped in the victim’s Dodge pickup truck. He was later picked up sitting on the side of Powerline Road by CCSO Undersheriff John Cliff Snyder, and admitted to stealing a Dodge truck and abandoning it the end of Powerline Road. After being taken into custody without incident, Husted attacked Undersheriff Snyder in the car resulting in shots being fired by the officer. Responding law enforcement found the suspect several yards away and both were transported to receive medical treatment whereby they are in stable condition. Undersheriff Snyder has served 27 years with the Catron County Sheriff’s Office.
The Gila National Forest, Silver City Ranger District has started the scoping phase for the Big Burro Mountains Road Decommissioning Project, giving an opportunity for the public to provide comments. According to a release, “the proposed action includes implementing measures to decommission 62 miles of roads, restore impacted resources to productivity, and return former roadbeds to a more natural appearance. These roads have been previously closed to motorized use.” The public may provide comments by September 5th through the website fs.usda.gov/goto/D7maps.