House Committee Hears Probation & Parole Reform Bill

Chief Public Defender Ben Baur

The New Mexican

Lawmakers continued to tussle Friday over a bill aimed at saving the state $40 million a year by reducing the number of parolees who are re-incarcerated over technical violations such as testing positive for drugs or missing appointments with their probation officers.

House Bill 263 is a much tinkered with version of a bill that passed both houses with bipartisan support last year, but was vetoed by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham at the behest of Attorney General Hector Balderas and the state’s district attorneys, who said they hadn’t


Los Alamos Police Blotter: Jan. 2 To Feb. 1, 2020

LAPD News:

The following information is provided by the Los Alamos Police Department.

Neither arrests nor charges indicate a conviction, and neither means that a person is guilty of the charges filed against them.



Jan. 2 at 6:42 p.m. / Police arrested Michael S. Kowalczyk, 30, of Tierra Azul on East Jemez Road and charged him with driving on a suspended or revoked license.






Jan. 9 at 1:47 a.m. / Police arrested Thomas A. Allen, 52, of Los Alamos near Diamond Drive and Urban and charged him with Aggravated DWI: Refusal to submit


Former LANL Scientist Turab Lookman Pleads Guilty To Making False Statement About Involvement With Chinese Government Technology Program

Turab Lookman

FBI News:

ALBUQUERQUE – Turab Lookman, 67, of Sante Fe, and a former scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), pleaded guilty today in federal court in Albuquerque to a charge of making a false statement to a government investigator about his involvement in the Thousand Talents Program, an initiative by the Chinese government to recruit people with access to and knowledge of foreign technology and intellectual property.

A grand jury previously indicted Lookman May 22, 2019, on three counts of making false statements to  the federal government. 

In his plea agreement,


Red Flag Gun Bill ‘Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order Act’ Steeped In Controversy Clears Senate Panel

The New Mexican

In an emotional hearing before hundreds of supporters and detractors, a state Senate panel narrowly passed a high-profile gun bill today that would allow law enforcement to obtain a court order to confiscate guns from people considered dangerous.

The Senate Public Affairs committee voted 4-3 along party lines in favor of Senate Bill 5, known as the “Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order Act”.

The bill will now be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The legislation is a marquee item on Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s agenda and likely to be one of the most contentious


NM Supreme Court Rules Injured Tribal Casino Worker Cannot Seek Benefits Through State Workers’ Comp

NMSC News:

SANTA FE — The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that tribal sovereignty precludes an Isleta Pueblo casino employee injured on the job from bringing a claim against the Pueblo or its insurer under the state workers’ compensation program.

In a unanimous opinion, the state’s highest court reversed a decision by the Court of Appeals to allow Gloria Mendoza to proceed with a claim for benefits filed with the New Mexico Workers’ Compensation Administration (WCA).

Ms. Mendoza injured her knee while pushing chairs at the casino Aug. 24, 2015. The Pueblo’s third-party workers’ compensation


FBI: Larry Hopkins Pleads Guilty To Firearm Charge

FBI News:

ALBUQUERQUE – Larry Mitchell Hopkins, who also is known as Johnny Horton Jr., 70, of Flora Vista, N.M., pleaded guilty today in federal court in Albuquerque to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

A grand jury indicted Hopkins April 24, 2019 for this offense. 

In his plea agreement, Hopkins admitted committing this offense in San Juan County by possessing nine pistols, rifles and shotguns Nov. 28, 2017.  Hopkins also admitted possessing ammunition after being previously convicted of felony offenses in Michigan, Oregon and South Dakota, including illegal weapon possession


FBI Files Federal Arrest Warrant For Rico-Ruvira

Jorge Ernesto Rico-Ruvira

FBI News:

The FBI has filed a federal arrest warrant charging Jorge Ernesto Rico-Ruvira with Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution.

Chaves County Magistrate Court in Roswell issued a state felony arrest warrant Jan. 8 charging Rico-Ruvira with one count of murder, after he allegedly killed a woman in Roswell and is believed to have fled with their 3-year-old son.

The U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico issued a federal arrest warrant Friday for Rico-Ruvira.

Rico-Ruvira, 32, is described as a Hispanic male, 5’8” tall, and weighs approximately 150 pounds.


State Takes Enforcement Action Against Cannon Air Force Base For Discharging Without Permit

NMED News:

SANTA FE — The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) today issued an administrative compliance order to the United States Air Force for ongoing violations of state law related to the protection of groundwater resources.

The administrative compliance order seeks immediate compliance with groundwater discharge permitting requirements and assesses a civil penalty of $1,699,872.60.

In 2018, the state began protecting groundwater resources from three per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals, a group of manmade chemicals known to cause adverse health effects.


New Mexico Supreme Court Forms Committee To Consider Changes In Pretrial Detention Rules



SANTA FE – The New Mexico Supreme Court has ordered the establishment of a 15-member committee to consider possible changes in procedures for the pretrial detention of criminal defendants.


“The work of the committee can help strengthen the reforms approved by voters in the 2016 constitutional amendment and provide additional guidance to judges making the difficult decisions about pretrial detention and release,” Chief Justice Judith K. Nakamura said in a statement.


Retired Justice Edward Chávez will chair the Ad Hoc Committee to Review Pretrial


Los Alamos Police Blotter: Dec. 27, 2019 – Jan. 1, 2020

LAPD News:

The following information is provided by the Los Alamos Police Department.

Neither arrests nor charges indicate a conviction, and neither means that a person is guilty of the charges filed against them.


Dec. 27 at 8:40 p.m. / Police arrested Loretta B. Stubbs, 59, of Los Alamos near Airport Road and Nambe Loop and charged her with DWI and driving with an open container of alcohol.




Jan. 1 at 4:39 a.m. / Police arrested Stanlee Avery Platero, 19, of Los Alamos at 2500 Trinity Dr. and charged him with aggravated DWI: refusal to submit to