Police & Prison

Historic state budget gets even bigger in Senate Finance

BY: - February 14, 2022

New Mexico lawmakers were up early on Sunday to spend even more money in what was already the state’s largest budget in history. The Senate Finance committee unanimously approved an amendment that adds $141 million to non-recurring spending and $11.1 million in annual spending, increasing the overall budget that was approved by the House last […]

Sponsors pull second-chance bill

BY: - February 14, 2022

People convicted of crimes they committed before they were 18 will wait at least another full year to find out whether they’ll have any shot at a life on the outside in the next several decades. Senate Bill 43 would have decreased how long someone convicted as a juvenile would have to be in prison […]


Statement from the sponsors of SB 43, a bill to ban life without parole for children

BY: , and - February 14, 2022

It is with heavy hearts that the sponsors and advocates for SB 43 (the second-chance bill) announce that we will be removing the bill from consideration in the New Mexico House of Representatives. This is a decision we do not take lightly but is one we are forced to make to preserve the values on […]

Preventive policing could expand across New Mexico

BY: - February 13, 2022

A pilot program in Albuquerque that tries to use a public health approach to thwart future violence would be expanded statewide under a proposal House lawmakers passed early in the morning on Saturday. The House of Representatives after nearly three hours of debate voted 44-20 to create a statewide system of funding based on Albuquerque’s […]

Stronger protections for judges clear the NM House

BY: - February 12, 2022

A maintenance worker at the New Mexico Supreme Court looked out of a window and saw a woman dropping off a package outside the front door beneath the window of the court’s superintendent last month. The worker thought the package looked suspicious, and as the woman was walking away, he called to her and asked […]

New Mexico governor orchestrating compromises on second-chance bill

BY: - February 11, 2022

New Mexico’s Democratic governor is arranging talks with the attorney general, “public safety leaders” and victims advocates to erode the second-chance bill. The legislation is meant to decrease how long someone is in prison before they’re eligible for parole if they are convicted as a juvenile. It stands at 30 years. The original 2022 measure […]

Rebuttable presumptions are out, ankle bracelets are in

BY: - February 11, 2022

A House panel voted 10-2 to increase electronic surveillance of people awaiting trial across New Mexico.  Though it’s a substantially different proposal, lawmakers are calling it a substitute for House Bill 5 as the final days of the session approach. The original legislation would have shifted the burden of proof onto people accused of crimes […]

Second Chance bill opponents ask for another compromise

BY: - February 10, 2022

State prosecutors and Republican lawmakers on Wednesday morning attacked legislation that would shorten the length of time young people must serve in prison before coming up for parole, painting it as a radical proposal and its proponents as unwilling to bend. In reality, the bill is based on recommendations from experts in criminal law and […]

State Senate moves to end life-without-parole sentencing for young people

BY: - February 9, 2022

After two hours of debate and four attempted amendments, the New Mexico Senate approved a bill that would abolish sentences of life without parole for people who aren’t 18. Young people in New Mexico who are tried and convicted as adults and sentenced to life have to serve 30 years before being eligible for parole. […]

The effort to keep more people in jail before trial hits a wall in the Legislature

BY: - February 8, 2022

A legislative proposal supported by prosecutors and lawmakers hoping to do something about crime appears to have run into a wall: New Mexicans’ fundamental right to liberty. “I just know that we need to do something,” said Sen. David Gallegos (R-Eunice). “This bill may not be the silver bullet, but I think as we went […]

Lawmakers rewriting bill to toughen sentences for gun crimes

BY: - February 8, 2022

Two members of the state’s House of Representatives, one a Democrat and the other a Republican, will be working together to revise a bill that would raise the penalties for gun-related crimes. The House Judiciary Committee on Monday delayed voting on House Bill 68 until sponsor, Rep. Meredith Dixon (D-Albuquerque), brings it back with changes. […]

‘We cannot solely depend on the system’

BY: - February 4, 2022

American law turns a blind eye to missing and murdered Indigenous people, said Casey Camp-Horneik, a Native rights activist, environmentalist and actor. “When we die, when we are killed, when we are missing, is there a database? No,” Camp-Horneik said Friday morning at a rally on the Santa Fe Plaza, where she gave an opening […]