Publicity pushes trial to new venue

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer The trial of three men charged with first-degree murder in the death of a 10-year-old Clovis boy will be moved out of Curry County because of pre-trial publicity, according to court documents made available Wednesday. Ninth Judicial District Judge Joe Parker ruled in favor of a defense motion for […]

Shooting witness testifies

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer The murder trial of Jimmy Bentley began Monday afternoon after most of the day was spent in jury selection. The only witness to take the stand was a former cab driver who saw the shooting. Wiping tears from his eyes, Richard Barry, 42, identified the man in a photo […]

Curry County district court jurors to serve shorter time

By Andy Jackson: CNJ staff writer Judges and lawyers agree justice will be better served now that Curry County jurors serve less time in the 9th Judicial District. The adjustment from three months to one month was made by Curry County District Court Clerk Dianna Hunt because of increased court traffic, and has resulted in […]

Beat it: Jackson acquitted of all charges

By Linda Deutsch: The Associated Press SANTA MARIA, Calif. — A jury acquitted Michael Jackson on Monday of molesting a 13-year-old cancer survivor at his Neverland ranch — exonerating the pop star who insisted he was the victim of mother-and-son con artists and a prosecutor with a vendetta. Jurors also acquitted Jackson of getting the […]

Ex-jailer’s trial ends in hung jury

By William Thompson: Freedom Newspapers TUCUMCARI — Jurors failed to reach a unanimous verdict after almost five hours of deliberations following former-jailer Robert Gonzales’ trial on Wednesday. Judge Ricky D. Purcell declared a mistrial. Prosecutor Donald Schutte has six months to retry Gonzales and said he plans on doing so. Gonzales faced two counts of […]

Attorney will not seek death in murder case

By Mike Linn: CNJ News Editor MULESHOE — A Muleshoe man charged with capital murder in the deaths of three people including his ex-wife will not face the death penalty, court officials said Wednesday during jury selection at the Bailey County Courthouse. Larry Kitchens, 52, dressed in a light, white, button-down shirt and jeans, listened […]

Jury: Innocent of murder

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Fernando Garcia hugs attorney Jim Klipstine Jr. of Hobbs at the Curry County Courthouse after being found not guilty of second-degree murder and tampering with evidence Thursday. Garcia was found guilty of dogfighting. (CNJ staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Darrell Todd Maurina, CNJ STAFF WRITER Dogfight guilt seen by panel Jurors spent two hours trying […]