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Albuquerque Mayor Hopeful Under Scrutiny, Grand Jury Indicts New Mexico Teen In Library Shooting

Sep 9, 2017

12 Arrested In Protests Of Conquistador PageantAssociated Press

Police have arrested 12 people in Santa Fe during protests about a costumed re-enactment of the return of Spanish conquerors to New Mexico after a 17th century American Indian revolt.

Police Sgt. Gardner Finney said a dozen people were arrested Friday on charges of trespassing and disorderly conduct.

Protesters were cordoned off in a corner of Santa Fe's downtown plaza during the re-enactment as police thronged the area.

At the center of the plaza, a pageant marked the arrival of conquistador Don Diego de Vargas in 1692, 12 years after Pueblo Indians revolted and drove out Spanish colonists.

Protesters shouted, "You're on stolen land" and "1680," referring to the year of the Native American revolt.

Albuquerque Mayor Hopeful Under Scrutiny Over 'In-Kind' CashAssociated Press, KOB-TV

A publicly-financed Albuquerque mayoral candidate is facing scrutiny after his campaign manager reportedly solicited nearly $30,000 in cash donations

A KOB-TV in Albuquerque investigation into Tim Keller's campaign reports found dozens of individuals contributed thousands of dollars, and the campaign listed them as "in-kind" contributions.

The city charter defines an in-kind donation as "a good or service other than money."

Records show some contributions came from high-profile Democrats like former Lt. Gov. Diane Denish.

A letter obtained by the station had Keller's campaign manager and Rio Strategies partner Jessie Lane Hunt asking supporters to "make a check out to Rio Strategies" to support Keller.

Hunt says the money goes to buying water, clipboards and office space.

By receiving public financing, Keller cannot legally raise any more money.

Grand Jury Indicts New Mexico Teen In Library ShootingAssociated Press

A grand jury has returned a 33-count indictment against a high school sophomore accused of opening fire inside a New Mexico public library, killing two employees and seriously wounding four other people.

The Curry County district attorney's office says 16-year-old Nathaniel Jouett is being prosecuted as an adult. He's expected to be arraigned in the coming days.

The teen is facing two counts of first-degree murder and multiple counts of child abuse, aggravated battery and assault stemming from the Aug. 28 shooting rampage at the library in Clovis, New Mexico.

According to court records, Jouett told investigators that he initially intended to target his school and that he somehow ended up at the library. He told investigators he was mad and had been thinking "bad things" for some time.

Doctor Accused Of Faking Cancer Records To Delay Sentencing Associated Press

A New Mexico cardiologist is accused of falsifying cancer diagnosis and treatment documents to postpone or avoid sentencing in which he faces two years in federal prison for health care fraud.

Federal charges allege that 53-year-old Roy G. Heilbron of Santa Fe produced and submitted fake medical documents for prostate treatment in Costa Rica to support his request to postpone being sentenced Aug. 28 on his Feb. 17 guilty plea in the fraud case.

A skeptical judge denied the postponement request, and Heilbron was arrested Aug. 18 in Charlotte, North Carolina on an arrest warrant based on the new allegations.

Defense attorney Donald Marks did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment on Heilbron's behalf regarding the new allegations and clarification of whether Heilbron actually has prostate cancer.

New Mexico: Rise In Effective Or Higher Teachers Associated Press

Officials say around 74 percent of public school teachers in New Mexico are effective or better when it comes to their success in the classroom.

That's the highest number of effective or better teachers in the state since Gov. Susana Martinez introduced a new teacher evaluations system four years ago.

The New Mexico Public Education Department on Friday released the latest results under the much-debated system that's the focus of an ongoing court battle.

New results show that the number of "highly effective" teachers rose 9 percent while the number of "ineffective" teachers statewide fell around 41 percent.

New Mexico Public Education Secretary Christopher Ruszkowski credited to rise in effective or better teachers to school districts taking advantage of state-funded professional development programs.

Noon

New Mexico public education officials are expected Friday to release the results of the latest round of teacher evaluations, but critics say the evaluation system is still flawed.

The annual reviews have been a source of contention and legal wrangling between the teacher unions and the state Public Education Department for years. Earlier this year, Gov. Susana Martinez's administration announced changes after a series of meetings with teachers around the state to reduce the weight that standardized test scores have on the evaluations.

The president of the National Education Association in New Mexico, Betty Patterson, said Friday that students need to learn and be inspired but that standardized tests are not an accurate measure of a student's creativity or potential or a teacher's ability to motivate students.

Giant Portrait Of Toddler Peers Over US-Mexico Border Wall Associated Press

There's a giant toddler in Mexico peering over a steel wall that divides that country from the U.S.

A French artist who goes by the moniker "JR" erected the cut-out photo of the boy that stands 65 feet (19.81 meters) tall.

He has pasted other large-scale portraits around the world, with much of his recent work focused on immigrants and refugees.

The unveiling of the boy in Tecate —  about 40 miles (64.37 kilometer) from San Diego — came the same week President Donald Trump said he would end a program that has allowed young immigrants brought to America illegally as children to remain in the country.

The administration also accepted more proposals involving its proposal to build a continuous wall along the nearly 2,000-mile border.

JR said he did not intend for the project to coincide with the news.

Instead, he said it is part of his work to highlight the "Ellis Islands of today."

Tedxabq To Be Powered By Solar Energy Associated Press

An Albuquerque solar company is helping a TED Talks-type event in New Mexico's largest city run all on solar energy.

CloudSolar has announced that it will power TEDxABQ on Saturday on solar.

Paul Droege, the company's founder, says the attendees see "how easy and liberating" it is to use solar power.

TEDxABQ executive director Beth Haley says organizers try each year to make the event more sustainable.

New Mexico Athletic Director Pledges Integrity, Transparency Associated Press

The University of New Mexico's newest athletic director says he wants everyone to know that the athletic department isn't broken and he's committed to finding ways to excel on and off the field.

Eddie Nunez was introduced Friday at a packed news conference as the 13th athletic director in UNM's history. He replaces Paul Krebs, who announced his retirement in June after 11 years with the Lobos.

A Florida native who made his mark at LSU, Nunez will have to rebuild a program that's under scrutiny following questionable spending and a lack of transparency. State auditors and the New Mexico Attorney General's Office are conducting separate inquiries after questions were raised about the use of public money on a 2015 golf junket.

Nunez says financial responsibility, integrity and transparency will be mandatory at every level within the athletic department.

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