Inmate recaptured after fleeing court
CLOVIS – Authorities in Clovis have recaptured a Curry County jail inmate who escaped custody during a court appearance, and now they want to find out how he got away.
Police Chief Steve Sanders says 40-year-old Ruben Hernandez was arrested early Wednesday at a home after residents allowed officers to conduct a search.
Sanders says authorities will investigate how Hernandez escaped custody Tuesday but he says Hernandez wasn’t shackled or handcuffed when he made an appearance in Clovis Municipal Court.
According to Sanders, authorities believe Hernandez had planned his escape and may have changed clothing at a residence near the court.
Hernandez was arrested on a warrant accusing him of escape.
The Clovis Daily Journal reported that he already was jailed on charges of robbery and illegal possession of a firearm.
Medical marijuana board chairman out
SANTA FE – The state medical marijuana advisory board’s chairman is leaving office after not being reappointed by Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration.
The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that Dr. Steve Jenison was instrumental in establishing New Mexico’s medical marijuana program.
Health Secretary Retta Ward told Jenison in a letter that he will no longer be part of the board.
Health Department spokesman Kenny Vigil declined to elaborate on why Jension isn’t being reappointed.
Jenison says the decision may be stem from his efforts to ensure compliance with rules and to press for timely decisions on requests to add medical conditions allowing medical marijuana use.
New Mexico Drug Policy Alliance Director Emily Kaltenbach says Jenison has done a good job and that she’s sorry he’s not being reappointed.
Prairie chicken listing opposed
SANTA FE – Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration says the lesser prairie chicken’s population has stabilized so there is no need for the bird to receive federal protection.
The Las Cruces Sun-News reported that Cal Baca, chief of wildlife management at the New Mexico Game and Fish Department, said this week that the bird in New Mexico is safe. He told the Legislature’s Water and Natural Resources Committee that granting it federal protection as a threatened species would hurt businesses and be disruptive to private landowners in New Mexico
But Rep. Jeff Steinborn, D-Las Cruces, challenged Baca’s assessment and asked if it was based on science rather than politics.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced last month that it will reopen the comment period on possibly listing the prairie grouse as a threatened species.
Woman accused in boyfriend’s death
LAS CRUCES – A 38-year-old Las Cruces woman is accused of killing her 42-year-old boyfriend by running over him during an argument after they were out drinking.
Police say Annettee Larson Fuschini is charged with murder and aggravated driving while intoxicated.
Carlos Nevarez Jr. was pronounced dead at a hospital after police found him early Wednesday lying injured on the side of a road.
Police say Fuschini was clearly intoxicated as she attempted to revive Nevarez, whose 42nd birthday was Wednesday.
According to police, Fuschini and Nevarez were drinking alcohol at a friend’s home Tuesday evening, began arguing and left together around midnight.
Witnesses saw Nevarez get out of the car and begin walking away before he was run over.