Mine cleanup under way in Gila National Forest
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Officials with the Gila National Forest say the first phase of a cleanup project at the Royal John Mine and Mill is nearly complete.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Officials with the Gila National Forest say warmer temperatures and windy conditions are increasing fire danger across the southern New Mexico forest.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Activists in southwestern New Mexico hope to use Bob Dylan's birthday to raise money for Central American migrants seeking asylum.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Officials with the Gila National Forest are investigating vandalism at prehistoric rock art sites within the boundaries of the southern New Mexico forest.
Western New Mexico University partners with mining company
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Western New Mexico University is working with international mining company Freeport-McMoRan on a mission to prepare welders for work in Grant County's Chino and Tyrone mines.
The mining company's New Mexico operations donated $10,000 to the university's community and workforce development department to buy training equipment and supplies for the welding program.
Collection of fish species grows at Western New Mexico
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The collection of preserved deep-sea fish at Western New Mexico University has expanded to include ones with long teeth and glowing organs.
The Silver City Sun-News reports the school's Department of Natural Sciences recently received 18 jars of rare specimens. The donation came from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
Police: 2 men killed in a 4-car crash between Hatch, Deming
DEMING, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State Police say two men are dead after a four-car crash between Hatch and Deming.
They say 75-year-old Roy Edwards of Silver City and 23-year-old Alexis Chavez of Deming both were pronounced dead at the scene of Tuesday afternoon's crash.
State Police say a passenger car was traveling on State Road 26 following behind a van that was pulling a flatbed trailer with a vehicle on it.
Martinez appoints Perkins as 6th Judicial District judge
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez has appointed a Silver City attorney to fill a state District Court vacancy in southwestern New Mexico.
Martinez's office on Friday announced her appointment of William Perkins as a Sixth Judicial District judge to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Timothy Aldrich.
The district includes Grant, Luna and Hildalgo counties.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Marshals Service says a truck used by a Montana fugitive was seen Monday in the Silver City area of southwestern New Mexico.
A judge in Missoula on July 18 issued an arrest warrant for 45-year-old Marco Antonio Guzman after he failed to appear for hearings in felony cases, including one charging him with assaulting a woman,
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on the case of District Attorney Francesca Martinez-Estevez (all times local):
The lawyer for a New Mexico district attorney who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges stemming from a 2016 traffic stop is rebuffing calls by New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas for his client to step down.
Farmington looks to propel local food market
FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — Community agencies and the city of Farmington are looking for ways to boost the market for local food while revitalizing downtown.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The Forest Service says investigators have determined that an abandoned illegal campfire caused a fire that has burned 34 square miles (88 sq. kilometers) of timber in the Gila National Forest in western New Mexico.
The fire burning east of Reserve, New Mexico, and near the Eagle Point Lookout is contained around about a third of its perimeter.
Approximately 520 firefighters and other personnel are assigned to the fire, which started May 22.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a man camping in the Gila National Forest in New Mexico was bitten by bear that was drawn to the area by food that was kept in his tent.
The bear ripped open the tent early Sunday morning in the southern portion of the forest.
The man was able to get to a vehicle and drive himself to an emergency room.
Gila National Forest placed on ‘high fire danger’
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — A national forest in southwestern New Mexico along the Arizona border has been placed on "high fire danger."
The Silver City Sun-News reports warmer temperatures and high spring winds are increasing fire danger on the Gila (HEE'-luh) National Forest as officials report an increase in abandoned campfires.
Drivers urged to use caution during 5-day cycling event
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The state Department of Transportation advises drivers in southwestern New Mexico to be on the watch for cyclists and to expect intermittent road closures in the coming week due to a five-day cycling event.
The Annual Tour of the Gila begins Wednesday and runs through April 22 in and around Silver City.
Law enforcement officers will be stationed along the routes of events, some of which involve intermittent road closures.
WNMU will not increase student tuition next year
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Western New Mexico University will not increase student tuition next year.
The Silver City Sun-News reports Western New Mexico University Board of Regents unanimously approved this week a plan to keep student fees and tuition amounts the same.
New Mexico principal placed on leave after school threat
CLIFF, N.M. (AP) — A southwestern New Mexico school principal has been placed on leave after authorities say a student made a threat against his school.
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LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — A state judge has dropped one of five charges in a case against a southwestern New Mexico district attorney involved in a suspected DWI traffic stop.
New Mexico auditor: Small-town employee misused credit card
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The state auditor says a review of a New Mexico town's finances found a former employee fraudulently used a city-issued credit card.
State Auditor Wayne Johnson said in a statement Monday that he worked with Silver City officials and an independent accountant to launch the investigation into irregularities in the former employee's credit card purchases that were first noticed in 2016.
WNMU gets anonymous donation to help Native Americans
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Anonymous donors are pledging more than $130,000 to the Western New Mexico University Foundation to establish scholarships for Native American students.
The Silver City Sun-News reports a couple recently established an endowment and created an immediate use fund to supplement its growth.
New Mexico lawmakers seek to protect net neutrality
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Two Democratic state lawmakers in New Mexico have proposed consumer protection legislation in response to the Federal Communications Commission's repeal of net-neutrality rules, urging the state's Republican governor on Tuesday to allow a vote on the measure.
Gov. Susana Martinez has discretion over whether non-budgetary bills can be heard during a 30-day legislative session and has not responded.
Western New Mexico University hires new athletic director
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Western New Mexico University has a new athletic director.
The school announced Monday that it has hired Scott Noble to run the Mustangs athletic program. His job at the school's Silver City campus begins Feb. 2.
For the last several years, Noble has been the athletic director at Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne, Wyoming, where he re-introduced the women's basketball program after a 30-year hiatus.
Police: Home invaders wore law enforcement disguises
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say two men who were shot during a home invasion in Silver City had disguised themselves in camouflage and clothing resembling that of a police officer.
Western New Mexico athletics director to resign
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Western New Mexico University's athletics director is stepping down.
Mark Coleman made his announcement late Friday, saying his last day at the helm of Mustang athletics will be Dec. 31.
He said his resignation comes with mixed emotions, as he has enjoyed his time at the university. He said it's time to move on to a new challenge that will benefit his family in the long run.
New Mexico elementary teacher accused of voyeurism
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a teacher from southwestern New Mexico is facing a felony charge of voyeurism over allegations he used his cellphone to take inappropriate photos of students.
New Mexico State Police say 38-year-old Frank Ramos Arias of Bayard was arrested Friday and booked into the Grant County jail.
Arias, who teaches at Stout Elementary School in Silver City, denied the allegations in an interview with police. It wasn't immediately clear if he had an attorney.
New Mexico mom arrested after kids test positive for meth
LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico mother is facing child abuse charges after her two children tested positive for methamphetamine.
Las Cruces police say 27-year-old Marissa Gomez was arrested last week in Silver City following an investigation that was spurred by a welfare check conducted on the two children in early October.
Gomez has addresses in both Las Cruces and Silver City. It's not clear if she has an attorney.
Lawsuit: Silver City hired violent cop who later killed ex
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The town of Silver City and its police department failed to stop a police captain from stalking his ex-girlfriend despite a number of complaints, and his violent behavior eventually led to her death, according to a lawsuit in federal court.
Authorities say Mark Contreras killed Nikki Bascom than shot and killed himself in 2016.
Western New Mexico football coach Adam Clark has resigned
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Western New Mexico University football coach Adam Clark has resigned after eight seasons.
School officials said Tuesday that offensive coordinator Chris Buckner and offensive line coach Andrew Faaumu will oversee the program during the transition period.
The Mustangs lost their first five games this season, but won three of their final four to finish with a 4-7 record.
Residents of southwestern New Mexico are finding out that big changes to their quality of life are being planned by the United States Air Force. Thousands of new training flights by supersonic F-16 fighter jets may soon be on the way over Silver City and other populated parts of Grant and Catron counties, and also the pristine Gila and the Aldo Leopold Wilderness areas, if Holloman Air Force Base has its way. But residents have had no say in the decision, nor did they even receive any prior notice of these far-reaching changes, even though federal law requires it.
Lawmakers must act quickly to keep N.M. in new nursing compact
For some nurses at Gila Regional Medical Center in Silver City, home is to the west — across the Arizona state line.
Since 2004, New Mexico has been part of a compact with 24 states allowing nurses to move from one to another without going through the rigmarole of getting a separate license in each.
But nearly all of those states have elected in the last few years to join a new compact.
And New Mexico is not among them. At least, not yet.
WNMU board votes to extend contact for president
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The Western New Mexico University Board of Regents has renewed the contract for its president for three years.
The board recently voted President Joseph Shepard's new contract, extending his term of employment through June 2021. Under the terms of the contract, performance incentives for five annual objectives were added.
Three of the five outcomes are focused on increasing non-state revenue.
Forest officials advise visitors to watch for mountain lion
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Gila National Forest officials say visitors to the Mogollon Box day-user area northwest of Silver City should be on the lookout for a mountain.
Forest officials say they're posting education and cautionary signs because they've received a report of a possible sighting.
According to forest officials, mountain lions tend to spend daytime hours in dense cover and be out more at dawn and susk.
State Police: Man shot by officer after wreck during pursuit
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a Silver City police officer shot and wounded a man who struck the officer's police vehicle during a pursuit while driving an SUV stolen from the man's mother in Las Cruces.
The New Mexico State Police says 41-year-old Michael Aguirre of Silver City was taken into custody after the collision early Thursday morning and is hospitalized for treatment of a neck wound not considered life-threatening.
Possible mountain lion sighting near Cherry Creek Campground
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Gila National Forest officials say they've received a report of a possible mountain lion sighting in the drainage near the Cherry Creek Campground on the Silver City Ranger District.
Cautionary signs will be posted at the campground.
Experts say human encounters with mountain lions are rare as most wild animals want to avoid humans.
Police: 2 dead after attempting to cross Silver City creek
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Two Silver City residents died while attempting to cross a creek in the southwestern New Mexico city, authorities said.
James Morales (Chamo), 47, and Laura Ortega, 57, were found dead Saturday in an arroyo east of the crossing where they attempted to cross, Silver City officials said.
Police and firefighters found the bodies while investigating an abandoned white car stuck in the San Vicente Arroyo, the Silver City Sun-News reported (http://bit.ly/2yVRyZd).
A story on Page A-7 of the Thursday, Aug. 24 2016, edition about Common Cause New Mexico’s report cards for legislators on open-government issues omitted Rep. Matthew McQueen, D-Galisteo, from the list of Santa Fe lawmakers. McQueen scored 100 percent. Also, the story incorrectly identified Rep. Rebecca Dow as being from Silver City. While her district includes Silver City, Dow actually resides in Truth or Consequences.
Lowriders subject of upcoming photo exhibit in Silver City
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Lowriders, the iconic cars popularized by Mexican Americans, will be the subject featured at an upcoming photo exhibit at Western New Mexico University.
The Frances McCray Gallery of Contemporary Art will host an opening reception Sept. 7 to jump-start an exhibit highlighting the classic cars over several decades.
The images will showcase New Mexican residents who have customized, detailed, painted, and upholstered symbols of Hispanic culture, creating mobile works of art.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Forest Service is asking people not to fly drones over the Gila National Forest next week because the agency will be conducting aerial surveys for insect and disease outbreaks using low-flying planes and helicopters.
The annual survey work on the southwestern New Mexico forest will begin Monday.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Silver police are investigating a possible arson of one of the department's storage units.
The Silver City Sun-News reports (https://goo.gl/2aTLtN) authorities were called to an early fire on Sunday at a department impound.
Officer Steven Delgado wrote that he saw flames coming out of the third and fourth garage bays when he arrived at the scene.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a missing Albuquerque man has been found dead in the Gila National Forest in Silver City.
New Mexico State Police say 24-year-old Phillip Cook apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
They say the official cause of death will be determined after an autopsy is done.
Small-town defense lawyer Jim Foy has a busy practice with a spider’s web of interconnections. His dealings with and on behalf of one elected prosecutor raise the question of whether the justice system can be impartial in New Mexico.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — The lawyer for a southwestern New Mexico District Attorney said the criminal charges filed against his client are "a shameful political attack" and are in retaliation for the prosecutor going public about problems with a police evidence locker.
Francesca Martinez-Estevez denies all charges against her, her lawyer Jim Foy said.
Lawyer: Criminal charges against Silver City DA are ‘shameful political attack’
The criminal charges filed against Silver City District Attorney Francesca Estevez are “a shameful political attack” and are in retaliation for the prosecutor going public about problems with a police evidence locker, Estevez’s lawyer said Tuesday.
Silver City-area DA charged in connection with 2016 traffic stop
The New Mexico Attorney General’s Office on Thursday charged District Attorney Francesca Estevez of Silver City with five misdemeanor counts — three of which accuse her of violating ethical principles as a public official in connection with a traffic stop last June in which police officers thought Estevez was drunk but didn’t test her for alcohol.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — A southwestern New Mexico district attorney who was facing calls to resign following a suspected DWI traffic stop is being accused by the state's top prosecutor of misusing her position as a public official.
The New Mexico Attorney General's Office on Thursday filed charges against Francesca Martinez-Estevez, whose district includes Grant, Luna and Hidalgo counties.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — A judge has ordered a New Mexico man to pay the state Department of Game and Fish $4,000 for illegal possession of a set of trophy elk antlers.
The Silver City Sun-News reported (http://bit.ly/2r2Vx6f ) Monday that 40-year-old Michael C. Aguirre was issued the fine in a civil case that stems from a November 2015 traffic stop.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State Police say a Silver City man has been arrested in a domestic dispute.
They say 40-year-old Michael Aguirre was taken into custody Monday after a vehicle crash on State Road 90 in Grant County.
State Police say Aguirre allegedly caused the crash by deliberately forcing another vehicle off the road.
SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — A math teacher who is head volleyball coach at Silver City High School has been arrested and accused of having a sex with a student.
The New Mexico State Police said Tiana Sanchez was arrested Thursday following an investigation that began May 12 when the student's mother provided the student's phone to authorities.
According to the State Police, the phone contained text and photographs with sexual content.