Judge declares mistrial in murder case

kw5zdp-casillasopeningarg.jpg

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico A district judge declared a mistrial Tuesday in the murder trial of Anthony Ray Casillas after a prosecution witness collapsed during testimony. Witness Steven Casillas, the defendant’s uncle, appeared injured when he arrived at court, District Attorney Matt Chandler said. Paramedics were called and were standing by while Steven […]

Supreme Court sends suit against city of Portales to trial

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer The New Mexico Supreme Court has sent a breach of contract lawsuit against the city of Portales back to District Court for a jury trial. The lawsuit alleges that without approval, Portales City Manager Debi Lee canceled retiree health benefits stipulated by a personnel ordinance. City representatives said the […]

Portales man requests self-representation at trial

PNT Staff Report A man accused of breaking into a Portales home and beating an 82-year-old woman has asked to represent himself at trial. Preston Blake, 25, faces more than 18 years in prison in connection with a 2008 residential burglary at the home of Jo Ann Vickers. At the beginning of testimony on Wednesday, […]

Border patrol agents’ trial not about immigration

Editorial The case of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean — Border Patrol agents in Texas convicted in 2006 of shooting an illegal-immigrant drug smuggler as he headed back toward Mexico, and sentenced to 11-year and 12-year prison terms, respectively — has become a cause c

County treasurer’s trial set for September

k0mqdr-bookouthearing59.jpg

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Curry County Treasurer Rhonda Bookout will go to trial in September on charges she tampered with public records. Bookout’s trial had been scheduled for June 9, but was postponed during a hearing Friday morning before District Judge Ted Hartley. Defense attorney Gary C. Mitchell told Hartley he needed more […]

Trial date set for Portales woman accused of killing son

By Karl Terry, PNT Managing Editor A Portales woman accused of killing her 6-year-old son in January 2007 faces a September trial date.Teresa Gilman, 25, was ruled competent to stand trial in February and indicted Feb. 27

Closing arguments next in Salas trial

By Kevin Wilson, Freedom New Mexico Lawyers will deliver closing arguments this morning in the first-degree murder trial of Edward Salas, accused in the 2005 shooting death of a 10-year-old Clovis boy. The prosecution rested its case Thursday afternoon, and the defense followed suit after nearly three hours of testimony in a Curry County courtroom […]

Prosecution and defense rest in homicide trial

jz50lz-411salasday4.jpg

By Kevin Wilson: Freedom New Mexico Lawyers will deliver closing arguments this morning in the first-degree murder trial of Edward Salas, accused in the 2005 shooting death of a 10-year-old Clovis boy. The prosecution rested its case Thursday afternoon, and the defense followed suit after nearly three hours of testimony in a Curry County courtroom […]

Jury to deliberate Friday

jz4v4p-411salasday4.jpg

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ staff writer

Prosecution rests in Salas murder trial

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ staff writer CLOVIS — The prosecution went through all of its planned witnesses in the trial of Edward Salas — including his mother — before Thursday’s mid-day break and rested shortly after returning from lunch. Salas, 23, faces charges in connection to the Sept. 15, 2005, shooting death of 10-year-old Carlos […]

Teenage girls give testimony during second day of murder trial

Freedom New Mexico Two teenage girls gave testimony for the prosecution Tuesday morning that placed three brothers and two other men at the apartment complex where 10-year-old Carlos Perez was shot and killed more than two years ago. Melissa Sanchez was the first witness in Day 2 of the first-degree murder trial of Edward Salas, […]

Edward Salas trial begins in Clovis

By Sharna Johnson, Freedom New Mexico Ruben Perez, the person police have said was the intended target of the shooting that took his 10-year-old brother’s life, was the first witness to take the stand Monday in the first-degree murder trial of a Clovis man. He detailed the events of Sept. 14, 2005, the day leading […]

Third Salas brother set to go on trial in Clovis for murder

By Sharna Johnson, Freedom New Mexico Jury selection in the first-degree murder trial for a third brother charged in the shooting death of a 10-year-old Clovis boy is set to begin Monday in Clovis. Edward Salas, 23, faces life in prison if convicted. The trial is scheduled for five days. Depending on how long jury […]

Cannon Airmen’s food drive could feed hundreds

By Janet Bresenham, Freedom New Mexico A recent trial community service project at Cannon Air Force Base will mean that hundreds of men, women and children in the local surrounding communities will have a lot more of the food they need. The Air Force Sergeants Association Chapter 1255 spent three weeks collecting canned food and […]

Novak verdict paused pending more testimony

1203021849-webcannoncourthouse1.jpg

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — A state forensic pathologist who testified for the prosecution in the first-degree murder trial of Airman Basic Edward Novak II will retake the stand and offer further testimony. Dr. Russell Alexander is expected to testify Friday morning. In a hearing Thursday morning outside the […]

Novak verdict paused pending more testimony

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — A state forensic pathologist who testified for the prosecution in the first-degree murder trial of Airman Basic Edward Novak II will retake the stand and offer further testimony. Dr. Russell Alexander is expected to testify Friday morning. In a hearing this Thursday morning outside […]

Novak jury still deliberating

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — Jurors recessed after deliberating for approximately nine hours Tuesday in the first-degree murder trial of Airman Basic Edward Novak II. They will resume deliberations at 8 a.m.Wednesday. If a guilty verdict is rendered, the court will move immediately into sentencing. Novak could face life […]

Second day of Novak trial ends early

Freedom New Mexico CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — The second day of testimony in the first-degree murder trial of Airman Basic Edward Novak II ended early Friday after two witnesses took the stand. Chief Trial Judge for the Air Force Dawn Eflein, suffering from a cold, told the court in a hoarse voice she was […]

Judge to allow re-enactment photos in Novak trial

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico The judge in a murder trial of a Cannon Air Force Base airman said Tuesday she will allow re-enactment photos of the crime scene as evidence. Chief Trial Judge for the Air Force Dawn Eflein said she believes the photos depicting how the body of victim Kimberly Novak, 20, […]

Novak judge throws out previous conviction

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico CANNON AIR FORCE BASE — Monday amounted to a day of housekeeping as attorneys argued motions before the judge in the first day of the first-degree murder trial of a Cannon Air Force Base airman accused of slaying his wife more than three years ago. Edward Novak II faces […]