Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Good Bye Raton Comet

We have seen the end of the Raton Comet. It was good knowing you. Reference the web address below.

Seems like the end of one world and maybe the beginning of the other as far as news for Raton goes. In the last few years we have seen the end of two newspapers here. Sortta sad and telling at the same time. Who knows who or what will take up the slack. I do not think the World Journal will, maybe but I doubt it.

It will be interesting, what will happen to the "legals" that government entities are forced to publish.

More on Raton Public Service (RPS) and Electrical Blackouts and Rolling Blackouts for Raton, NM

Storm clouds on the horizon. Click on the image.

Here is a link to questions posed by your blog master previously on RPS;

Here is a link to an interview by Marty Mayfield of Raton, NM radio station KRTN with RPS Board President Kathy McQuery and General Manager Dan Dible. . An excellent interview and a special thanks to KRTN is in order.

The interview highlights problems associated with providing electrical power to Raton. It highlights some options that the individuals interviewed feel we have to cover our electrical power needs now and to one degree or another in the future.

The "rate payers" have a slightly better understanding of the situation as compared to what we had before the interview. Marty Mayfield asked some questions that allows us a better understanding.

Two (2) questions that were not asked were;

 1) Is the current management of RPS (the board) capable of handling the situation, handling the management. Are they competent, up to the task?

2) Is the relationship between the "board" and the city adequate? Or is the tail wagging the dog?

Is the overall management of RPS the problem? This is a major concern to the citizens and or "rate payers" as Ms McQuery likes to call us.

From my point of view the utility is too big for Raton, too powerful for us. The manage not only RPS but the city commission who is supposed to be watching out for us. RPS watches out for RPS. The City Commission is supposed to be the watchdog for the citizens. It is not.

RPS may have problems with the power supply and infrastructure, but it has no such problem with taking care of itself and its employees. As a group RPS is the most powerful political group north of Santa Fe.

There is no checks and  balances with RPS, they are in the drivers seat and they know it and so does the city commission. The "rate payers" have no representation, no voice. The incestuous relationship there is a shame and a disgrace.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Six (6) Hour Blackout, What Is Up RPS?

Six hours without power in the middle of Memorial Day a lot of businesses need to make a little profit. I wonder how much that cost businesses and the city too. You don't think this blackout hurt? I was looking for something cool at the Dairy Queen and earlier the lines were too long so I came back when they were a bit shorter when the juice went out. Several of us walked out, nothing else to do.

Folks driving around town just looking to see what was going on, everything soon closed.

Maybe commissioners Chavez and Giacomo and Mayor Mantz who seem to be in the back pocket of RPS will ask some questions? You think so? You think they will have the best interests of the community in mind? What about RPS management? I can almost guarantee they will circle the wagons and defend against all comers especially any who question their ethics or competence.

Lets see what information is forthcoming and via what venue.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Friday, May 22, 2015

Colfax County Districe 1 Magistrate Court

Colfax County District 1 Magistrate Judge Warren Walton's court in Raton is a farce, a huge farce. The front desk folks are nice but dumb as a damn rock and incompetent as far as the word's definition will let you take it. They have no idea what or how their ignorance and incompetence affects the people they deal with. The same goes for the judge, if you can call him that. These folks are drawing a decent wage and all they really do is make things miserable to the people they interact with. The inconvenience they place honest folks is a damn shame. Do they care? No! No they do  not. This is one hell of a way to run a court.

Here is an article of interest on New Mexico magistrate courts;

The problems they cause are probably worse than 95% of the folks they deal with. Incompetent is too nice a word for there folks. And they continue on.

Their jury duty roster???? Stay away from it, lie through teeth to stay off of it or be prepared for a nightmare while you are on their list. Their recorded messages are a shame and a sham, who knows who makes these and who actually wrote the words which are on there. And then try and explain to the "judge" that his staff and the way he manages the office is causing problems and he is liable to give you a tongue lashing. You make a mistake and prepare to pay for it, they make a mistake and YOU will pay for it anyway.

This "power" we, the voters, gave "the judge" when we elected makes him think he is above the citizens that he deals with. This is one sorry excuse of a magistrate court.

He got reelected without any opposition, we cannot let that happen again.

I had posted on this "judge" before here, read what was said at the time.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Here Is What I Think Happened At The County Clerks Office. Some Awesome Investigative Gossip By Yours Truly.

A few years ago the then Colfax County Clerk, Rayetta Trujillo, was looking for someone to be her Chief Deputy and came upon Freda Baca. Rayetta figured she could train Freda and have her run for the clerks office when Rayetta timed out. Then she and Freda would switch jobs and Rayetta would be the chief deputy. Makes for 16 years of tenure if the arrangement works. This is a fairly common practice with other county clerks across New Mexico.Well it did not work out here.

Come the 2014 election cycle and lo and behold Rayettas (now Colfax County Clerks Chief Deputy) husband Lawrence Trujillo's is running as a Democrat for Colfax County Sheriff. Lawrence Trujillo was a long time Colfax County Deputy and Raton City policeman as well a candidate for the Sheriffs office anytime he could run.

Meanwhile Democrat Freda Baca's son Leonard Baca Jr. joined hands with the Republican candidate Rick Sinclair to run as his Chief Deputy. See their profiles here. Suffice it to say here is that the Sinclair/Baca Republican ticket trumped the Democrat Lawrence Trujillo. That is another article.

My guess is that relations at the County Clerks office got a bit testy. Especially between Freda Baca and her Chief Clerk, Rayetta Trujillo. Push came to shove and Rayetta got handed a pink slip before the November general election. Relations had to have been strained since Freda found out Lawrence Trujillo was going to run for the vacant sheriffs office slot that her son is also interested in. In all reality she may have known all along as Leonard ran for the office every time he had an opportunity.

What came as a surprise was to have Democrat Freda Baca's son join with the Republican to run against Leonard Trujillo.

Anyway with the election close at hand and Rayetta no longer there Freda Baca did not know how to handle the situation or got confused or something. The whole election day turned in to a slow motion disaster that lasted from before the polls opened until well after they closed. I bet confusion reigned at the Clerks office and the polling places.

Then the state finally got involved. Who knows how they (the state) found out about it. I will tell you that in 2010 the then Democrat County Clerk Reyetta Trujillo endorsed Republican Diana Duran over the incumbent Democrat then in office when Diana Duran first ran and won in 2010.

You can draw your own conclusions to this convoluted saga.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Breaking News, Retirement!!!! You Read About It Here 2nd

Click on the image to enlarge it to make it readable.

Some people will be happy, others will be sad. Watch the local lawyers go into action trying to get the Governor to appoint them....... Some who can't get elected look for these opportunities. It will be interesting to watch them go into action.....

Friday, May 8, 2015

Crooked Cop Arrested?

From a weblog reader, new information.

Anonymous said...

When I heard (from KRTN) that a Leon Herrera just got arrested, and that it was due to an "arrest warrant for embezzlement" -- with no mention of who had written the arrest warrant -- I went to the Raton Police Department, and spoke with a representative of that city entity. That person confirmed, in their official capacity, that yes, the Leon Herrera whom had just been arrested was indeed the same one who was a former Police Chief from Springer, New Mexico. So keep an eye on the ABQ news: since they already know that information now.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Gloom And Doom View For The City From KRTN

A screen grab of Raton from Google

I posted on the problem before, read the post here:

Now KRTN comes with this layoff by Pioneer Natural Resources. Nothing really new here other than asking the questions I had asked in my Wednesday September 4, 2013 post linked to above.

I quote from that post "Then Chuck Henry was elected and his efforts to be mayor started the political mess we find ourselves in now and started the wholesale decline. Chuck Henry and the DREGS brought Raton to its knees."

The decline in the city is visible and had been predictable for a long time. The fact that the main sources of jobs have extractive, coal mining and oil and gas drilling makes these types of layoffs inevitable. It happens all of the time all over the country to cities and municipalities that rely on extracting natural resources from the land. It is natural and it will happen to everyone. That is the nature of the beast.

The Raton City Council and to a lesser degree the Colfax County board of commissioners are helpless to do anything. Somewhat similar circumstances are present in Colorado, but that is for someone else to write about.
Raton has had opportunities to minimize the decline, or at least manage it. Raton has failed to do so adequately. The city council is not up to it, the mayor is certainly not up to it. The mayor does ok managing the city commission meetings, but that is the extent of it. There is no leadership there at the present time. Part of the problem stems from the political instability started and discussed in my September post referenced above.

I do not know where effective city leadership can be found. I think there have been some around, but we have either recalled them and thrown them out of office or otherwise dissuaded them from running.

There is an article on the decline of coal needs nationally and the effect of relying on coal mining by towns in Colfax and Las Animas counties in the July 1966 edition of the New Mexico Historical Review titled "The Raton Coal Field, An Evolving Landscape" written by Richard H. Kesel. I know it is an old publication, but the publication and the associated article can still be found.

Reliance on extractive "industries" has always had these consequences, always. It is neither bad nor good, it just is.

Monday, May 4, 2015

May 4th, 2015

And don't go pulling any stunts like the folks in Texas are pulling. I thought we had goofy folks, but Texas takes the prize. Like poking a stick at a chained dog with the chain having a weak link.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Newspapers In The Area

The Sangre de Christo Chronicle, Raton Comet and now the World Journal covering Huerfano and Las Animas Counties in South Central Colorado and Colfax County here in Northern New Mexico. Then there is the Chronicle News covering Trinidad proper.

It seems like the void left when the Raton Range and Trinidad Independent went under will take a while to fill. Right now the three news papers are all struggling to get a handle on the market, or so it looks like to me. The hard copy newspaper market has been changing for a while now and they struggle with adapting.
Television news coverage is expanding, for whatever that is worth this far from the stations. But they are still out there yelling the sensational news at us. The abandoned dog article, Bruce Jenner articles and the occasional article of real interest in the area.
The bigger threat is the internet and the multitude of gadgets associated with it. This weblog is one such item as is the web page for the Raton radio station KRTN. The radio as a source of news is long gone Anymore it is a cesspool of right wing and Christian religious talk shows.

The result is a hodpodge of places to go for partial coverage of the news.

The local market is being inundated with useless information of little interest to the readers by all of the newspapers because they cannot respond in time and they do not have the resources to go looking for the real stories. KRTN  will have some stuff of interest and other "stuff" on their radio show "This, That and the Other", but they will not, repeat, will not go after the real hard news because they do not want to alienate their advertisers, read "Pioneer Natural Resources". Do you think there will be a critical article on fracking on there, no sireee Bob.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Good News?

The following comment from today on the weblog.

Anonymous said...

It was not in red, but that is the comment.

The week before the front page of the Raton Comet was about a life size colon..... Yikes, good news like that I do not need.

And life is not all about good news either.
Here are some "bad" news:

The Bears are back out, look in your alley.
The feral cats are all over.
Herds of deer roaming the streets.
The city council is doing nothing, Nothing with a capitol N.
The Mayor loves her job but is doing nothing.
The New City Manager seems to be falling into the nothing trap.
Have not heard a peep from our County Sheriff, not one peep.

Here is the good news:

Not so many dogs this spring, thanks to the dog catcher.
No life size colon on the front page of the Raton Comet this week
The "economic development" folks doing a good job.
Have not heard a peep from our County Sheriff, not one peep.

Nor sure if good or bad news:

Who put a gate on Gardner Road restricting access? Isn't that a county road? Why did they do it?

Monday, April 20, 2015

Raton Police Dog Dies, Gets The Funeral Of The Century. At Least As Far As Raton, New Mexico Goes....

A big procession today April 20, 2015 for the Raton Police dog that died. We have had many dignitaries pass and nothing like the procession for the police dog, not even close. Every siren in town was wailing away, every church bell ringing. Accompanying him to doggy heaven.
I guess I am just jealous, when I go, if I do go, it will be a quiet affair. Some mourning and some smiling and some rejoicing. But no huge procession down 2nd street in Raton.

I was in a business as the procession drove by, it was impressive and 1/2 of us in the building did not know what was going on.
May he rest in peace, I hope St. Peter was there opening the gates for him. That is if he was not a crooked police dog like some of our human cops.

Tiptoeing thru the tulips up there with all flavors of Kibbles and Bits there for him

Friday, April 17, 2015

Looks Like D.A. Donald Gallegos Was Right

Click on the image to make it larger

Screen grab pilfered from today's (April 17/2015) Albuquerque Journal.

Read the whole article here:

The "Board" recommends dismissal of misconduct charges against D.A. Donald Gallegos. The D.A. seems to have been right about the outcome after the charges were initially made known.  Some bit if trust should be restored to the Law Enforcement community starting here. We thought this needed highlighting as much as the initial charge needed exposing. 

Our original post on this matter is here. Check it out. It got a lot of attention when the charges were first leveled, hopefully the same type of coverage will be available now..... I doubt it, the initial charges could have been political.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

New..... From Ace Reporter Ward.

Ward Shrake said...

I just got in a forwarded e-mail from my favorite ABQ-area media contact. The US Attorney's office, apparently, sent it to various members of the media as a press release or whatever; and it then got passed to me. In other words: this info below is as official as it gets. The subject line of the original e-mail was as follows:


(Note the part about "former".)

Here's the three-page PDF file I was given, about Vidal Sandoval.

I gotta wonder what the Grand Jury has up their sleeve for an encore. Other names have gotta come up ...

More info here at the Raton Comet.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Destroying The Neighborhoods

Destroying the neighborhoods, devaluing the properties. The individual who "prunes" trees, tops trees and removes trees. The individual operating in Raton does more to devalue property and destroy views in Raton than all of the vandals put together. AND he gets paid by ignorant homeowners to boot.
Topping and improper pruning like in the picture above does a lot in devaluing property.
These are all bad examples of tree pruning and topping. I do not know how the individual doing this all over town in Raton gets away with it, much less gets paid for doing so. He knows how to operate a chainsaw, but that is the extent of it. The advice he gives homeowners is horrible. The blind leading the blind here, destroying the community one tree at a time.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Colfax County Law Enforcement

Are they working for the citizens who pay their wages to protect us? Are they working for themselves thieving and extorting like a bunch of common criminals? Will they actually turn on the citizens like the Albuquerque Police Department did with District Attorney Kari Brandburg? Are the police departments turning into gangs of thugs who the citizens pay and provide for?

The person in South Carolina who videotaped the policeman there murdering the guy who ran away from him had to get the video out in a hurry, he was afraid for his life. The Albuquerque Police Department started harassing the district attorney there when she started looking into the allegations of wrongdoing in that department.

It begs the question what will happen in Colfax County as the investigation into the Sheriff's Department goes further. The Sheriff's Department has been wallowing in the cesspool for a while now. The last Sheriff was incompetent and I am not sure the fellow we have now is any different. Will the DA get involved? Will the Sheriff respond? What will the Raton City Council do? Will the City Council ask the Chief to look into his own department?

The City Council is responsible for the Raton Police Department..... I am not sure who oversees the Sheriff's Department. Not sure how much the County Commission has to do with it other than financing the outfit. But they cannot just look the other way.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Verifying Colfax County Sheriff's Officers Loyalties?

How do citizens verify that the Colfax County Sheriff''s Department is working for the citizens instead of for themselves or worse yet for some criminal element? How about the Raton City Police Department? These are legitimate questions for both departments. They need to clean up their own houses.

Something needs to be done so the community feels like it is being protected instead of being a potential target in one form or another. It may be harsh of me to insinuate this, but it is the truth. The current and former sheriffs need to do this. Did the former sheriff escape by being "termed" out of office? Will the new sheriff be up to the task of reassuring citizens and cleaning up the cesspool he now leads.

What about the Raton City Department? What about the State Police? What about the the port of entry officers? Whose side are they on?

There are many questions, the credibility of the law enforcement community is close to zero.
This picture represents the citizens of the county as we contemplate our police officers.......

The letter below courtesy of Ward Shrake and the Colfax County Sheriff's Office.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Protection From The People We Count On To Protect Us

The video at the web-link below is disturbing, very disturbing. Especially when we see what has been happening here in New Mexico with the police killing of the mentally ill man on the Sandia Mountains foothills. Especially when we see/read about the situation associated with Ex Sheriffs Deputy Vidal Sandoval.

The video in the link above is cold blooded, no other term for this. Makes one wonder how many of these clod blooded murders have happened in the past. We would never have heard of this one or the one in Albuquerque if it were not for video cams.

I wonder what was going through the man's mind as he ran? I wonder why the policeman felt the need to kill him?

I hope the average citizen does not need protection from the protectors.

I hope we are not in a situation like the image below.

Friday, April 3, 2015

At Least One Another Ex Policeman, Maybe More, Maybe Many More Involved In Drug Scam In Colfax County. UPDATED!UPDATED

There is more than one law enforcement officer involved, Vidal Sandoval was not acting alone. How many other folks were in on the illegal action. How long has this been going on. Where was Vidal Sandoval getting the bracelets of the "saint". The good cops need to put the pressure on Vidal so he will sing like a canary, he will, they all do. There are some in the area sweating their status right now.

Today's Albuquerque Journal has additional information on the Colfax County Police and their involvement in confiscation drugs and money from traffickers for their own enrichment. They need to ferret these rotten apples from the police force. The current police officers need to be involved in this expose or they will have lost whatever credibility they ever had.

The new county sheriff, the county old sheriff, the new county under sheriff, the new Raton police chief the old Raton police chief. Thy either knew or had suspicions or had heard rumors. Even crooked cops are stupid and cannot keep a secret.

Read all about it here

Their families must be horribly disappointed.

They must be made to pay. Innocent police officers now operate under a cloud of suspicion.

From  KOAT-TV via Ward Shrake
  • Official said that instead, Sandoval called the former Springer police chief Leon Herrera to help him pretend to be working with the Drug Enforcement Agency. They said Sandoval took the undercover agents’ money, and then turned off the recorder on his uniform and in his car.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

From The National Scene

Click on the image to make it larger

Funny, not sure if it is good or bad?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

County Clerk Being Investigated By Attorney Generals Office

Is this right, Freda Baca's Colfax County Clerk's office being investigated? More on this right here real soon. Stay posted.

In the March 26, 2015 edition of the Huerfano World it states that the Attorney General will be looking into a complaint filed by Robert Gonzales, a write in candidate for the school board. On 30 January 2015 his wife Eileen Gonzales also filed  a complaint. Both complaints were filed with the NM Secretary of State, Diana Duran.

Duran is a right wing Republican always on the lookout for headlines. Freda Baca was elected a Democrat, but her son Leonard ran with Republican Rick Sinclair for Sheriff of the county and won. I am not real sure if the Baca Clan are still Democrats or not. Either way, they are not acting like Democrats.

To complicate matters further, our former County Clerk Rayeta Trujillo is the Chief Deputy in the office. It is known that she was a supporter of Republican Diana Duran. Now Ms. Trujillo knows the procedure, the hoops that need to be jumped through. She has been through several elections.

Now the Secretary of State handed the ball to new Attorney General Hector Balderas. Hector is as close as we get with elected officicla here in Colfax County, he is from Wagon Mound. Hector may be the only good guy here having been handed the bag of over ripe cabbage to handle.

Ms. Baca is specifically looking at a complaint that she violated 3 different state statutes as related to the Raton School Board election.

This is bye bye for Ms. Freda Baca, even if she survives the investigation. The Democrats need to start looking for someone to run in her place. She needs to either step aside or at least make sure she does not run again.The Republicans already have their candidate sitting on the sidelines like the Turkey Vultures that just arrived back in Raton here lately. One way or another it will be interesting.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Amtrak: Chief will keep rolling through New Mexico

Read all about it here at the Santa Fe New Mexican.

I never thought they would keep the route. Back to eating crow.... developing a taste for the bird.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Raton Public Service Management Organization, Who Are The Masked Men?

Who are they? Who is the Raton Public Service? I am told that they are a city owns subsidiary but that the city cannot manage or give direction of the Raton Public Service. Who represents the citizen of Raton as related to the RPS? Do they have "secret identities"?

Who manages RPS on a day to day basis? Who hires the manager? Who does the manager work for?

It is my understanding that there is a  five member "Board of Directors" who appoint them selves and who in turn have to OK the two members from "recommended" by city commission and who are city commissioners. This seems ass backwards to me. Is there a Raton Public Service Commission?

Is there another board or body associated with the Raton Public Service?

Now who sets the guidance for the outfit? Who has the final word as to goings on at RPS? Who handles the millions of dollars stashed who knows where by RPS? I checked all over the internet and could come up with nothing. Maybe Ward Shrake wants to look into this, might be a challenge for his sleuthing skills.

There were some questions before the last city election and Mayor Mantz had already indicated she would not interfere with the operation of RPS. The two new city commissioners, Ronald Chavez and Donald Giacomo also indicated that they would not interfere with RPS. So that leaves us with the brand new commissioner Lindy Schuster and Neil Segotta who may be "neutral" as related to RPS.

Anyone care to enlighten me.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Nitpicking The Raton Comet Reporter And Editor

To the Raton Comet reporter, Michelle Duregger, and the editor Ellen Miller-Goins. The Raton Comet is a newspaper, not a weblog. So check your facts and your spellings. If the reporter does not do it then the editor ought to catch it.

In this weeks edition, Volume 3, Number 12 for the dates March 19 - 25. 2015 there is an article about a 101 year old woman. The article states she was born on "January 18, 1914, the year New Mexico became a state". WHAT?  New Mexico became a state in 1912! Where did Michelle Duregger get the idea we became a state in 1914?

Abiquiu not Abique! In the same article the writer spells Abiquiu as Abique. The person(s) writing/editing the newspaper must be from somewhere else other than New Mexico. Good thing she did not have to spell Manco Burro Pass, or worse yet Cuyamungue, who knows how that would have come out?

Also the original Dick Wooten (Uncle Dick) died on 22 August of 1893 in Trinidad, Colorado, the "Dick Wooten" mentioned in the article must be his son. This should have been explained so I did not have to rush to Wikipedia to check facts.

No Lois Lane from the Daily Planet would have done this, neither would have Sweet Polly Purebred, ace reporter .

Note: Other than that, it was a great article.

P.S. Check out Manco Burro Pass and/or Cuyamungue too, try Google Earth? Sooner or later the information will come in handy.

To the Raton Comet: You are welcome.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Think He Only Did It Once? Or Twice? Or Three Times? Or How Many Times?

The current situation within the Colfax County Sheriff's office reminds me of the Dukes of Hazzard TV show of a few years back. A Boss Hogg outfit if I ever saw one. It probably has been like this for a while and I do not know that there are not more bad apples within that organization.

Do you think Sheriff's Deputy Vidal Sandoval only did this a few times? Want to bet he had been doing it for quite a while and he was just unlucky these idiots got stopped twice on a single day in the same state.

This is disgusting, no other word for it. He was being paid to protect the citizens of the county and he took advantage of the situation to enrich himself. He let the citizens of the county down, he let his family down and he let his friends down.

The investigation that is sure to follow will reveal what a low life Mr. Vidal Sandoval really was. He has been at this for a while now, maybe we will never ever really know when he started. But we do know he did it at least 3 times since June of 2014.

Information from KOB TV here. Lots of information.

More information from the Raton Comet here.

Former Sheriff Casias and current Colfax County Sheriff Rick Sinclair have some explaining to do. They can't, either of them, claim ignorance of this. Someone had to know something or they were not doing their jobs.

St. Patrick's Day

The whole world is Irish today
Have a safe one, remember all of our Irish friends. The wearing of a green is a must today.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Jesus H Christ! What Next?

He ran in the primary for County Sheriff
MARCH 13, 2015

            ALBUQUERQUE – U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez, Special Agent in Charge Carol K.O. Lee of the FBI’s Albuquerque Division, and Chief Pete N. Kassetas of the New Mexico State Police (NMSP) announced today that Vidal Sandoval, 45, a Deputy of the Colfax County Sheriff’s Office who resides in Cimarron, N.M., has been indicted for aiding and abetting a drug trafficking crime.  Sandoval made his initial appearance on the indictment in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., this afternoon, and was remanded into federal custody pending an arraignment and detention hearing which is scheduled for Monday, March 16, 2015.

            Sandoval is charged in an indictment that was filed under seal on March 10, 2015, and was unsealed earlier today after he was arrested by the FBI and NMSP.  The indictment alleges that on Feb. 28, 2015, Sandoval aided and abetted an attempt to possess cocaine with intent to distribute in Colfax County, N.M.  The indictment includes forfeiture provisions seeking a money judgment in the amount of at least $19,500.00, the proceeds Sandoval allegedly obtained as a result of his unlawful conduct.

            According to affidavits submitted in support of court-approved search warrants that were executed following Sandoval’s arrest, the investigation into Sandoval began in summer 2014, after two men reported to the NMSP that a law enforcement officer allegedly seized marijuana and cash from them during a traffic stop without giving them a receipt for the marijuana or money.  Investigation by the NMSP identified Sandoval as the officer allegedly involved in the traffic stop.

The affidavits allege that from Dec. 2014 through Feb. 2015, the FBI and NMSP deployed undercover agents into areas of Colfax County that Sandoval was known to patrol.  During that time, Sandoval allegedly conducted traffic stops on the undercover agents’ vehicles on three occasions during which he allegedly offered to escort the undercover agents through Colfax County with drugs and currency in exchange for a portion of their drug profits.  In Feb. 2015, Sandoval allegedly agreed to escort an undercover agent with a load of drugs through Colfax County.  On Feb. 28, 2015, Sandoval allegedly accepted cash for escorting the undercover agent, who was driving a vehicle containing cocaine, from Colfax County to the New Mexico/Colorado border.

If convicted of the offense charged in the indictment, Sandoval faces a mandatory minimum five years and a maximum of 40 years in federal prison.  Charges in indictments are merely accusations and defendants are presumed innocent unless found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

This case was investigated by the Santa Fe and Albuquerque offices of the FBI and the New Mexico State Police, and the Colfax County Sheriff’s Office is cooperating in the ongoing investigation.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean J. Sullivan is prosecuting the case.

Additional information here, and also on the Raton Comet web site here.

Chickens, Then And Now

Click on the image to make it larger

Chicken technology going crazy. This from an article at the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Raton Needs A leader.....

Dr. David Ivan spoke to a crowd of about 150 people Monday night in Raton at the Raton Convention Center about how a small community can be a cool community. There ia a good article on what Dr. Ivan had to say at the KRTN website.

What Raton needs is inspired leadership! I Don't know when we last had it but I can tell you we do not have it now. Sure we have people leading the community but we do not have inspired leadership. No one on the Raton City Commission, surely not Mayor Mantz. I am sure all are interested in the well being of the community but none are community leaders. The closest we have had in the last few years is the last City Manager, Butch McGowen. If the new city manager is up to the task is yet to be seen. Regardless of what his detractors say, P.J. Mileta was the type of leader we need today. He led the city when things were tough and not only held it together but moved us forward.

He got caught in the hysteria we had and quit. our loss. We have gone through a few of them since, acting and otherwise. By the same token we have been through a whole slew of city commissioners and mayors. Yet the leadership we need during these tough economic times is nowhere in sight. I am sure the commission we now have can keep body and soul together, but we need more. We need a leader.
 There are plenty of volunteers around, lots of them everywhere you look. Maybe not enough, but they are there. And they need to know that their efforts are appreciated. The folks I know understand that the efforts of volunteers keep us going here in Raton. The community leadership is what is lacking and I am not sure we can find it in small town America when times are as tough as they are now.

But Raton has a lot going for it, I know. And I dare say a lot of folks know. We, as a community may shrink some more, but Raton will survive. The coal mines are gone, the race track is gone, the whole country is trying to get out of this decade long slump we find ourselves in. 

Maybe if we stop spending trillions on wars and forign aid the country as a whole can come back.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Where Will The Turkey Vultures Roost This Summer

Click on the image to make it larger

These trees at a property on the NW corner of South 5th and Pecos is where the vultures used to roost. They are gone now, the owner finally got tired of having them there and cut the evergreens and pruned back the cottonwood.

The vultures come back to Raton on the 21 or 22 of March every year, just like clockwork. They are the first in a long line of avian migrants to come to or pass through Raton each year.

I need to be specific as to the words I use or I may be misunderstood. I mean Turkey Vultures, not the lawyer kind and I mean bird migrants not any other kind. I do not want to cause anxiety in the vultures that reside here year round.
Anyway, back to the Turkey Vulture.... Where will they roost now that these trees have been cut and removed? The vultures have been using them as roosting trees for over 30 years that I recall. Where will they go? My guess is they will go to the trees which are in the drainage ditch behind the place where they had been roosting previously. If they need conifers to roost in then it is my guess they will choose the closest ones to the ones cut down.

Keep an eye out for them on the 21st and the 22nd of this month and welcome our friends back for 2015. I love to see them soar, for they really do not fly, they soar. They are ugly as sin, but they soar like no other creature can.

You can watch them soaring here.
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