Cops and courts: District Attorney’s office employee honored

An employee at the 9th Judicial District Attorney’s office was named “New Mexico District Attorney’s Employee of the Year” earlier this month at the state prosecutors’ conference in Albuquerque.

Dennis Usery is the computer information systems manger for the district attorney’s office. The award is given annually to one employee in New Mexico for his or her outstanding accomplishments, dedication and service, a press release from the district attorney’s office said.

Usery has assisted in establishing a case-management database, which is used in all district attorney offices in the state, the release said. The database tracks criminal files, including the names of the defendants, their criminal history and locations of victims and witnesses.

He has also assisted local and federal law enforcement officers in multiple stings by using his computer forensic skills to seize evidence of illegal computer crimes, the release said.

“I am truly honored to have him in our office, working for the people of Curry and Roosevelt counties,” District Attorney Matt Chandler said.

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A Portales man was sentenced Thursday to 30 years in prison for rape.

Armando Galvan, 47, or Portales, pleaded guilty to kidnapping, three counts of criminal sexual penetration and assault with intent to commit a violent felony, according to a press release from the district attorney’s office.

District Judge Stephen Quinn sentenced him, according to the press release. Due to prior offenses, the maximum he could have received was 38 years.

The charges stem from an incident on June 4, 2004, when a woman contacted police and said she had been the victim of a sexual assault. The victim reportedly told officers that Galvan had followed her as she was on a walk and forced her into a cemetery where he raped her three times in three different locations within the cemetery, police said.

According to the press release, Galvan refused to let the victim leave the scene, and threatened that he would harm her and her unborn baby. She was five months pregnant at the time, the release said.

The baby was born and is doing fine, said District Attorney Matthew Chandler.

Galvan must serve 85 percent of his sentence before he’s eligible for parole, officials said. Upon release he will have to register as a sex offender.

No family members for Galvan could be reached for comment.

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Melrose Mayor Ray Hester was sentenced to 182 days of unsupervised probation May 18 after pleading guilty to hitting another man in the face.

The incident was reported April 16, when Hester and Darrell Boney were involved in an altercation at a mutual friend’s house, reports show.

The initial report showed Hester said something to the other man and then struck him in the jaw. But later that day Hester stopped by the Melrose Police Department to offer his side of the story. Hester said Boney reached for him, and that’s when he struck the man.

“I’ll tell you what, sometimes you are in the wrong place at the right time,” Hester said last week, adding that he decided to plead guilty rather than go through a lengthy court process. “If it come the same situation, I‘d probably do it again,” he said.

Boney could not be reached for comment.

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A long-time administrative assistant at the Clovis Police Department retired Friday.

Vicki Morris has worked at the department for 30 years, Chief Bill Carey said. In her career, she has worked in a variety of capacities under five different chiefs.

“She just knew everything that went on at this department,” Carey said. “She’s going to be really missed.”

Morris is married to Leon Morris, a former Clovis officer who retired in January after 31 years of service.

Cops and Courts is compiled by CNJ staff writer David Irvin. He can be contacted at 763-6991 or: