My turn: Inmates inspiring as graduates

I interviewed students from seven graduating classes this week, all of whom were passionate and excited about their big day. But I think the graduating class where I had the most fun with was the Roosevelt County Detention Center inmates who graduated from their parenting class on Tuesday. I laughed and joked with them and […]

Inmates complete parenting course

lld85h-lld7zw518rcdcgradwomanweb.jpg

Alisa Boswell Emotions ran high in the Roosevelt County Detention Center Tuesday as 14 inmates, two with tears in their eyes, accepted certificates of completion for the parenting class they had just completed. “I learned how to be a mom,” said Rosenda Martinez, beginning to cry. “I know I’ve grown because me and my daughter […]

ENMU instructor teaches parenting class to inmates

liumf0-lium7b330parentingclassstoryweb.jpg

Alisa Boswell Teaching college students in classrooms at Eastern New Mexico University is old school to Instructor of Social Work Patricia Saylor. Behind bars? Not so much. These days, Saylor is alternating her instruction time between ENMU and at Roosevelt County Detention Center as part of a new program at the jail. Sgt. Clay Layher […]

Curry detention center volunteer training to be held

Freedom New Mexico Christian Believers is hosting a training and orientation 6 p.m. Thursday for detention center volunteers. The training is for volunteers to work with Curry County Adult Detention Center inmates in both religious and educational fields. The training is at 209 W. 7th Street. Information: 763-1715

PETA’s death threats go too far

By Baxter Black: PNT columnist You know the inmates have taken over the asylum when you’re turning to PETA as the voice of reason. These are the animal rights extremists who compared eating chicken to the Holocaust, compared the murdering cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer to butchering hogs and once proclaimed it would be great if Foot […]

Commission to hear request for signs

PNT Staff Report The Roosevelt County Commission is set to hear a request from Karen McCaslin to install signs on South Roosevelt Road AG. Her requests are part of the commission meeting at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the County Courthouse. McCaslin wants speed limit, cattle and children playing signs installed. The agenda also includes an […]

Year in review: Jail escape among most notable of crimes

By Sharna Johnson: Freedm New Mexico An initially quiet year was fraught with high profile criminal cases in the last quarter. Law enforcement scrambled to recapture eight escaped inmates and the prior year’s homicide rate doubled in the space of weeks. With the exception of a summertime rash of home invasions, things were relatively calm […]

Report: Escaped inmates stole key

CLOVIS — Inmates who escaped from the Curry County jail last month likely took a key left in the lock of a door to an area housing pipes without officers who were working on a plumbing repair noticing, according to a report by the district attorney’s office. District Attorney Matt Chandler previously said authorities were […]

Four inmates charged in escape

k6apa8-828pressconference1.jpg

By Sharna Johnson, Freedom New Mexico Police have charged four jail inmates with assisting in Sunday’s escape from the Curry County jail. Two people close to escapees have also been arrested and charged with obstruction of justice, allegedly for refusing to cooperate with law enforcement. Five of the eight escapees remained at large on Wednesday […]

Curry County jail officer arrested

By Rick White: Freedom New Mexico A Curry County jail officer arrested Tuesday and charged with smuggling marijuana into the jail said he was blackmailed by inmates. Clovis’ Carsten Douglas, 23, said an inmate stole his handcuff keys. In exchange for not telling authorities about the incident, the inmate asked the detention officer to bring […]

Six inmates charged in alleged beating

Freedom Newspapers Curry County Sheriff’s deputies charged six inmates at the Curry County Detention center Wednesday in connection with the July 19 battery of another 41-year-old inmate, according to an incident report. The men are each charged with one misdemeanor count of battery, and $500 was added to their respective bonds, the report said. Michael […]

Inmates help Elida prepare for centennial

1179204215-515workcrewweb.jpg

By Casey Peacock: PNT Staff Writer Selected inmates at the Roosevelt County Detention Center have the opportunity to give back to the community by participating in the work detail program. According to Roosevelt County Sheriff Darren Hooker, inmates are being utilized to perform work details around the county, including the city of Portales. On Friday, […]

Detention center officer arrested

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom Newspapers A Curry County Adult Detention Center officer was arrested Monday, charged with sneaking marijuana and tobacco into the jail, according to the Curry County Sheriff’s Office. Raul Lopez, 23, told investigators he was having financial problems and when an inmate offered him to pay to smuggle in the contraband, according […]

Death row survivor speaks out

1159420521-9-28-Deathrow-man-web.jpg

By Casey Peacock: PNT Staff Writer Wrongfully convicted of first-degree murder in 1983, former death row inmate Juan Melendez is devoting his time to speaking out about abolishing the death penalty. “I survived. I’ve always been a survivor,” Melendez, 55, said Wednesday as he related to a small audience at Eastern New Mexico University the […]

Attorneys caution inmates on calls

By WIlliam P. Thompson Portales attorney Nettie Griffin said she understands why Roosevelt County Detention Center officials monitor phone calls placed by inmates. She said she assumes inmates’ calls to their attorneys are not monitored, but tells her jailed clients to be careful anyway. “I absolutely feel confident that the detention center authorities are not […]

Roosevelt Detention Center inmate population still near capacity

By William Thompson The adult inmate population at Roosevelt County Detention Center stood at 80 yesterday, just two short of capacity. The center’s administrator, Jesse Luera, said he expects county commissioners will adopt an ordinance on March 7 to issue a gross receipts tax revenue bond for an addition to the detention center to relieve […]

The cost of incarceration

1139035331-Schools-vs-jails.jpg

By Marlena Hartz Every day in Roosevelt and Curry County, taxpayers pay more to house criminals than to educate children. In Curry County, inmates absorb almost double the amount of money students do. To house an inmate at the detention center burns $50 in taxpayer money per day. To educate and care for a child […]

Incarcerated females face own set of obstacles

1133067218-05.jpg

Marlena Hartz: Freedom Newspapers By Marlena Hartz If Renee Jurado weren’t sentenced to spend six months behind the concrete walls of the Curry County Adult Detention Center, she said she would probably be snorting cocaine or smoking methamphetamine. “It’s better for me to be in here right now. I’m not ready to be out — […]

County detention center administrator resigns

By Marlena Hartz: Freedom Newspapers Curry County Detention Center Administrator Don Burdine said he resigned Friday because he felt county officials lacked confidence in his management skills. The Curry County Sheriff’s Office administered an unannounced search of the jail at 7 a.m. Friday at the request of Curry County Manager Dick Smith and County Commissioner […]

Prisons use inmate’s palates to curb bad behavior

By Marlena Hartz: Freedom Newspapers Adult detention centers in Maryland, Virginia, and New York — just to name a few — are using prisoner palates to curb bad behavior. Now New Mexico can be added to the list. Following a suggestion from the prison kitchen manager, Curry County Adult Detention Center Administrator Don Burdine agreed […]