Adult sentencing for N.M. doctor’s killer
FARMINGTON – A 20-year-old man convicted of beating a Farmington doctor to death with a pool cue will be sentenced as an adult.
The Daily Times reported that District Judge William Birdsall made the ruling Friday based on reports from a court-appointed psychiatrist and the Juvenile Probation Office.
John Mayes was convicted Nov. 25 in the June 2011 killing of Dr. James Nordstrom at Nordstrom’s home. Mayes was found guilty of second-degree murder and aggravated burglary, among other offenses.
Mayes, who will turn 21 in September, faces a maximum sentence as an adult of 15 years.
State parks offering free admission Monday
DENVER – Parks and Wildlife officials are celebrating the 138th anniversary of the Centennial State by offering free admission to state parks Monday.
Colorado joined the union as the 38th state on Aug. 1, 1876, and the first state park was established about 80 years later.
Park entrance fees will be waived Monday, but activities such as fishing and camping still will require a license and permit.
John Denver’s former Aspen home for sale
ASPEN – An Aspen-area house and guesthouse once owned by singer John Denver are for sale for nearly $10.8 million.
The Aspen Times reported Friday that the property includes a six-bedroom main house and a five-bedroom guesthouse in a gated neighborhood.
The real estate listing says the two buildings have a total of nearly 9,100 square feet and sit on more than 7.5 acres.
The newspaper said broker Carol Dopkin, who is handling the listing, didn’t return a call.
Denver lived in the house until his death in October 1997 in a plane crash. He was 53.
Mormon missionaries leave West Africa
SALT LAKE CITY – Church officials say 274 Mormon missionaries are being transferred out of Sierra Leone and Liberia because the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said Friday the missionaries are being reassigned to other countries.
So far, there are no reports of missionaries being sick with Ebola. The transfers are precautionary. The church says missionaries have been asked to remain in their apartments in recent weeks to prevent getting sick.
The church is the latest organization to move people out of the region. More than 300 Peace Corps volunteers have been evacuated from Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
After slayings, mayor forms task force
ALBUQUERQUE – After the brutal slayings of two homeless Navajo men, Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry says he is forming a task force to address chronic homelessness among Native Americans in New Mexico’s largest city.
Berry met with Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly and other tribal leaders last week. He said data the city has collected as part of its efforts to fight homelessness shows Native Americans are on the streets longer than other populations and are more likely to be victimized.
He said he and Shelly have agreed to work together to figure out why, and find solutions. And he said he will reach out to other pueblos, as well.
Three teenagers are being held on murder charges in the attack weeks ago. One of the suspects told police the trio had been targeting homeless people around Albuquerque for a year.
Arizona gaming revenue about $24M for quarter
PHOENIX – The Arizona Department of Gaming says contributions to the state from tribal gambling revenue will be about $24.6 million for the quarter that ended June 30.
That is about 1.7 percent less from the same quarter last year.
State programs get funding from the tribal money.
Gaming Department officials say about $12 million goes toward the state’s Instructional Improvement Fund for education with roughly $6 million going into the Trauma and Emergency Services Fund.