Thursday’s Top Stories
- Man breaks into Northeast Heights businesses through the roof
- City of Albuquerque wants to double the number of speed cameras
- Sandoval County Commission bans residents from feeding wild horses
- National Park Service restricts unofficial access to Petroglyph National Monument
- Albuquerque police to target gun crimes near schools
- Virgin Galactic’s Thursday spaceflight “is a go” from New Mexico
- Chirping sounds lead airport officials to bag filled with smuggled parrot eggs
- Iran unveils latest version of ballistic missile amid wider tensions over nuclear program
Thursday’s Five Facts
 City settles lawsuit for wrongfully jailing Albuquerque teen in murder case – An Albuquerque woman who spent a week in jail wrongly accused of murder has settled a lawsuit with the city. The city has agreed to pay Gisell Estrada a “significant settlement” in the six-figures according to ACLU of New Mexico. Then 17-years-old, Estrada was arrested in November 2019 by APD accused of being a suspect in a fatal shooting. After spending a week in jail, Estrada was released from custody as evidence indicated police had arrested the wrong person. Estrada filed a lawsuit against the City of Albuquerque in December 2020, broadly accusing the police of investigative negligence.
 New Mexico sees 48% surge in homelessness, according to new LFC report – New Mexico has seen almost a 50% increase in the homeless population in the last year. A report given to lawmakers on the Legislative Finance Committee outlines the lack of affordable housing. The committee report showed since 2017, rent in New Mexico has increased by 70%, while average wage levels grew by just 15%. A common argument at the Roundhouse is that a majority of the homeless population does not want to take advantage of the services or housing available. For those that do, LFC staff estimates New Mexico could benefit from another 859 permanent supportive housing units. That would cost about $11.4 million annually.
 Severe storms to hit eastern New Mexico again – Skies will be mostly to partly sunny through the morning and midday. Storms will develop along the dry line this afternoon eastward to Texas by around 10 p.m. One or two severe storms will be possible, with damaging wind, large hail and tornadoes. The rest of the state will stay dry and hot.
 International District residents want old Walmart to become another grocery store – It’s been more than two months since the Walmart on San Mateo near Central closed its doors. People who once shopped there are still scrambling to get their groceries elsewhere. While the city secured nearly $2 million during this year’s legislative session for redevelopment in that district, it’s still not enough to buy the property. However, Walmart has said if the property doesn’t sell, they are willing to negotiate with the city.
 UNM team tapped by NASA to research lunar surface – Ahead of their next moon mission, NASA has selected five teams from across the country to collaborate on lunar science and sample analysis research. A UNM research team will soon be working on NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute. The team will join researchers from Providence, RI; Boulder, CO; Laurel, MD; and Atlanta, GA.