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Six arrests in Cuba

—JOHN PAUL TRUJILLO, SHERIFF, SANDOVAL COUNTY
On November 9 members of the Sandoval County Sheriff’s Office and Adult Probation and Parole conducted monthly client inspections in the Cuba, New Mexico, area. As a result of these inspections, five individuals were arrested for violations of conditions of probation, warrants for four additional persons were prepared for their respective violations, and one individual was arrested for driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor/drugs and possession of a controlled substance, to wit, cocaine.


District court offers clinic, legal forms for “do-it-yourself litigants”

More and more people are representing themselves in court proceedings, particularly in divorce, child support, and child-custody issues. For those who choose to represent themselves in these matters, there is now help in Sandoval County. The Thirteenth Judicial District Court, at the corner of Idalia Road and Highway 528, is providing free legal forms to the public.
Not only do these forms help a self-represented or pro se person but they help the court work more efficiently. The forms and instructions are specifically drafted to conform to the requirements of New Mexico law and to court procedure.

Packets currently available include legal forms for divorce, with or without minor children, in contested or uncontested situations. Parentage packets are also available. Couples who have minor children together, but never married, can ask the court for help in establishing child support, custody, and visitation through the use of these forms.

The forms come with clear step-by-step instructions written especially for lay people without any legal background. The instructions are designed to inform and guide a party not only through filling out the forms but also to educate on court procedure. For example, if you are filing for divorce and think the mediation process might help solve your disagreements, the instructions in the divorce packet tell you how to request a court-appointed mediator.

Another court service for pro se litigants is the free court clinic, held on certain Wednesdays from noon to 2:00 p m. on a walk-in basis. Attorneys will be available to provide information and help people through the process of completing paperwork for divorce, support, and other matters.

Judge Violet Otero, the 13th Judicial District Court's family law judge, has initiated a pro se docket on a monthly basis in Sandoval County. Now, people who are representing themselves in family-law matters appear on a expedited court calendar. On pro se docket days, an team of people representing legal and community resources appear in court with Judge Otero. Those team members who can best help the parties based upon the circumstances of the case are assigned by the judge to assist the parties in reaching a conclusion to their case.

The free legal-form packets are available at the clerk's office in the courthouse. The office is open from 8:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. For further information about any of these services, please contact Crystal Hyer, staff attorney, at 771-7170 or berdcah@nmcourts.com.


Cyber Tipline available for reporting online sexual predators

The New Mexico Cyber Tipline, at www.NMCyberSafety.org, allows the public to file reports with information on incidents of contact with online sexual predators. The Web site is designed to allow reports to be filed anonymously by parents or by young victims of online predation. Reports will be collected by Attorney General Patricia Madrid’s Internet Crimes Against Children Unit.

Madrid said, “A statistic I’ve seen states that one in five children has been sexually solicited by predators on the Internet. From what I have seen and learned from my office’s review of sexual predators online, I think that statistic may be very conservative. I’ve seen for myself how quickly a child can be contacted in an online chat room, solicited for sex, and sent sexually explicit photos and video. If you have not seen for yourself what happens in some chat rooms, you may find it difficult to comprehend the sheer number of predators who seem to be lying in wait for our young people.”

Using information from these reports, the Internet Crimes Against Children Unit will investigate, track, and prosecute those who prey on children via chat rooms, e-mail, and instant messaging.


New Mexico disaster-assistance team returns from Hurricane Rita mission

The New Mexico Disaster Medical Assistance Team that deployed to Woodville, Texas, following Hurricane Rita, is now home, including the ten members who remained behind through mid-October as part of a FEMA strike force to provide additional assistance where needed in the Gulf region.

While in Woodville, about fifty-five miles north of Beaumont—one of the areas hardest hit by the storm—DMAT members set up operations at the Tyler County Hospital, reopening the hospital after it had been shut down awaiting the arrival of the hurricane. During their stay, DMAT treated more than four hundred patients before turning the hospital over to regular staff.

DMAT is sponsored by the UNM Department of Emergency Medicine and includes physicians, nurses, and technicians, as well as logistics, communications, security, pharmacy, and administrative specialists from throughout the state.

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