Cops and Courts: Murder trial delayed 30 days

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer The defense attorney was granted a 30-day extension Wednesday in the first-degree murder case of three Clovis men accused of shooting a 10-year-old boy while he slept in his bed more than a year ago. Roger Bargas, attorney for defendant David Griego, 30, told Judge Joe Parker at a […]

Defense attorney wants new trial

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer The defense attorney for a 31-year-old Clovis man convicted of first-degree murder contends his client’s rights were violated when police recorded his phone conversations from jail without his knowledge, according to court records. James Klipstine Jr. filed a six-page motion Thursday in the 9th Judicial District Court asking for […]

Courthouse security heightened during trial

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer Court security personnel and sheriff’s deputies were highly visible throughout a five-day trial that ended Tuesday with Robert Macias being convicted of first-degree murder. Yellow security tape blocked the front steps of the Curry County Courthouse, diverting pedestrian traffic into the courthouse through a side entrance. Visitors passed through […]

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 […]

Trial postponed

By CNJ Staff Due to inclement weather, the first-degree murder trial of a 31-year-old Clovis man scheduled Monday was postponed until today. Robert “Pelon” Macias is accused of shooting Wilfred Salas Jr., 19, in the head early in the morning of Jan. 15, 2006, as Salas drove on Merriwether Street. Salas was found with a […]

Charges don’t rectify chief’s alleged lies

By Freedom Newspapers We don’t have much use for I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby as an influence on policy, given that as chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney he was instrumental in maneuvering the United States into an unnecessary and unwise war in Iraq. Still, we wonder whether it serves justice at all to […]

Slaying trial slated to begin Monday

CNJ Staff The first-degree murder trial of a 31-year-old Clovis man charged in the shooting death of a Clovis teen is set to begin Monday, in the 9th Judicial District court. Robert “Pelon” Macias is accused of shooting Wilfred Salas Jr., 19, in the head Jan. 15, 2006, as the victim was driving on Merriwether […]

Number of area homicides falls again

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer For the second straight year, the number of area homicides dropped in 2006. Ninth Judicial District Attorney Matt Chandler, chief law enforcement officer for Curry and Roosevelt counties, said three homicides occurred in the district in 2006 — down from six in 2005 and 12 in 2004. All three […]

After long, brutal reign, Saddam executed

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Saddam Hussein was convicted for his role in the killings of 148 Shiite Muslims from a town where assassins tried to kill the dictator in 1982. (MCT photo) The Associated Press BAGHDAD, Iraq — In the end, Saddam Hussein died at the hands of those he brutalized during a bloody regime that led Iraq into […]

Saddam death sentence may set example

By Freedom Newspapers One hopes that the death sentence imposed on former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein by an Iraqi court will resonate most meaningfully in places like North Korea, Zimbabwe, Cuba, and perhaps even in Iran. It cannot but help to focus the mind for people like Kim Jong Il, Robert Mugabe, the Castro brothers […]

Murder trial moved

CNJ Staff More than 100 motions have been argued in the homicide cases of two men accused of killing an elderly Portales couple in March 2005, according to 9th Judicial District Attorney Matt Chandler. Included in those motions was the decision last week to move Stanley Bedford’s trial to Albuquerque, Chandler said. A motion to […]

Shooting trial to begin Monday

CNJ Staff The jury trial for a Clovis bail bondsman accused of shooting a bail jumper in the back a year ago is scheduled to begin Monday, according to court records. Henry “Hank” Bayless, 64, is accused of shooting Javier Sanchez on Sept. 20, 2005, while trying to take him into custody for failing to […]

Man sentenced for gun in toy box

CNJ Staff A Clovis man was sentenced to four years in prison for hiding his gun in a child’s toy box, according to a press release from the 9th Judicial District Attorney’s office. Sammy Guerrero, 24, was arrested in September 2003 and charged as a suspect in connection with a string of local robberies. The […]

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 […]

Cannon airman to stand trial

CNJ Staff An airman charged with murdering his wife will stand trial, according to a press release from Cannon Air Force Base. Airman Edward Novak II is charged with premeditated murder and child abuse by the military. The decision came after a June evidentiary hearing was held at Cannon to determine if evidence against Novak […]

Prosecutors ask for testimony to be excluded

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer Prosecutors asked a judge to exclude testimony of a defense psychiatric expert from the murder trial of Jimmy Bentley during a hearing Friday in the 9th Judicial District Court. District Attorney Matt Chandler gave the court several reasons for wanting Dr. Samuel Roll stricken as a witness, including outdated […]

Court rules: “Lynching Lloyd” is out

By sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Prosecutors cannot reference murder-defendant Jimmy Bentley’s nickname during trial to infer a racial motive for the homicide, according to a ruling filed in district court Thursday. The ruling came after a hearing last week on pretrial arguments in the case. Citing case precedent, Judge Joe Parker ruled prosecutors can […]

Cops and Courts: Murder charges dropped in case of elderly woman’s death

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Ninth Judicial District Attorney Matt Chandler said he dropped the first-degree murder charges last week against a 40-year-old Clovis man in connection with the 2004 beating death of an elderly woman for reasons relating to another trial. The district attorney’s office made the decision to drop its murder case […]

Murder trial for Clovis man delayed

CNJ staff Next week’s first-degree murder trial for a Clovis man will be delayed almost six months, according to the 9th Judicial District Attorney’s office. Robert Macias was scheduled for a three-day trial starting Wednesday, but additional days were needed to accommodate more witness testimony than originally planned. The next available date that could be […]

Third lawyer assigned to slaying suspect

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff Writer A third attorney has taken over as defense counsel in the death penalty case of a Clovis dentist accused of murdering a 30-year-old mother of two and leaving her body in a rural Curry County ditch. Also, District Attorney Matt Chandler told the court at a hearing Thursday morning […]