Year in review — Crime and tragedy

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Freedom New Mexico Child convicted in Portales death A Roosevelt County jury on April 15 found a 13-year-old Portales boy guilty of killing a 21-year-old Eastern New Mexico University student. Prosecutors said DeAngelo Montoya broke into Angel Vale’s home multiple times when she was away and ultimately stole a rifle from the home that was […]

Pair of prosecutors awarded

Freedom New Mexico A pair of prosecutors in the 9th Judicial District won two of the six annual awards at the Tuesday night awards ceremony for the Prosecutors Section of the New Mexico Bar Association in Albuquerque. Deputy District Attorney Ben Cross was recognized in the drug category, while Deputy District Attorney Brian Stover was […]

Judge orders teen shooting suspect held

Freedom New Mexico Prosecutors said a district judge Tuesday ordered a 13-year-old charged with murder to remain in custody throughout the prosecution of his case. D’Angelo Montoya has been held at the Curry County Juvenile Detention Center since July 24. He is charged with first-degree murder in the July 22 shooting death of 22-year-old Angel […]

Roosevelt farmer still faces death penalty

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Even though the death penalty was repealed in New Mexico, a Roosevelt County farmer accused of arranging a murder-for-hire still faces possible execution. Prosecutors filed a notice of intent to seek the death penalty against William “Billy Joe” Watson last August. Watson is accused of conspiring with the Aryan […]

Prosecutors claim no ‘unfairness’

Freedom New Mexico Prosecutors say they made no attempt to “glean unfair insight into and through the written notes of jurors” following a mistrial last month, according to court records filed Friday. The defense for accused child molester Larry Hatcher made the allegation Thursday and asked District Judge Stephen Quinn to dismiss the case. Quinn […]

Prosecutors seek death for Taylor

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Staff and Wire Reports The U.S. Attorney’s Office says it will seek the death penalty for a member of the Aryan Brotherhood who is charged with fatally shooting a 71-year-old rancher in Roosevelt County. Donald Taylor is charged with murder for allegedly firing a shot into the home of Jimmy “Bo” Chunn of Causey on […]

Prosecutors lay out timeline in Salas case

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By Sharna Johnson, Freedom New Mexico The prosecution used a parade of people Tuesday to place Edward Salas and four others at the apartment complex where 10-year-old Carlos Perez was shot and killed more than two years ago. Jurors heard about 7 1/2 hours of testimony from six witnesses in the second day of trial […]

Local DA handling Albuquerque case

Staff and wire reports An Albuquerque man was indicted Friday by an Albuquerque grand jury in a murder-for-hire case being handled by the 9th Judicial District attorney’s office. Earl Scott Robinson, 72, is being held on $1 million bond and is charged with conspiracy to commit murder, criminal solicitation to commit murder, witness intimidation and […]

District attorney acted in best interest of justice

Editorial Boulder, Colo., District Attorney Mary Lacy felt the need to explain herself amid questions about whether she should have spent the time and money pursuing a lead that didn’t pan out. The explanation should not have been necessary. Lacy spent an hour and a half last week discussing the arrest of John Mark Karr […]

Prosecutors want testimony excluded

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom Newspapers Prosecutors asked a judge to exclude testimony of a defense psychiatric expert from the murder trial of Jimmy Bentley during a hearing Friday in the 9th Judicial District Court. District Attorney Matt Chandler gave the court several reasons for wanting Dr. Samuel Roll stricken as a witness, including outdated methods, […]

DA seeks death penalty, Chandler says decision not easy

By David Irvin: Freedom Newspapers The 9th Judicial District Attorney’s office will seek the death penalty against two men accused of killing an elderly Portales couple earlier this year. Jerry Fuller and Stanley Bedford are accused of kidnapping and killing Odis, 70, and Doris Newman, 69, earlier this year in Portales. The bodies of the […]

Man sentenced on molestation charges

By David Irvin: CNJ staff writer Editor’s note: Freedom Newspapers has opted to withhold some names from this report in an effort to protect the victim’s identity. A Clovis man on Wednesday was sentenced to 33 years in prison for sex acts committed against an 8-year-old girl. Prosecutors allege Derrick Vincent Ervin, 27, married the […]

District given funds for attorneys

By David Irvin The average case load for prosecutors in the Ninth Judicial District Attorney’s office may be cut by a quarter by July. Before adjourning on Saturday, the New Mexico Legislature granted the Ninth Judicial District Attorney’s office its request for five additional employees, three of which are prosecutors. Each prosecutor in the District […]

Clovis man pleads guilty to manslaughter

By David Irvin: Freedom Newspapers The second of three men charged in the January 2004 killing of Carlos Murillo of Clovis pleaded guilty Monday to voluntary manslaughter. Including a one-year firearm enhancement filed by the state, Santiago Calbert, 20, of Clovis faces a maximum of seven years in prison, prosecutors said. Sentencing is scheduled for […]