Thursday’s Top Stories
- New Mexico environment secretary testifies before Senate on groundwater contamination
- Passenger on diverted flight to Albuquerque charged with interfering with airline crew
- Trial underway for man accused of raping, killing 6-year-old girl
- Man pleads guilty for role in Albuquerque sex trafficking ring
- City, DOJ rejects sanctions against APD union over crime campaign
- Ball Field Fire prompts evacuations near Ruidoso, now 75% contained
- Free childcare offered for New Mexicans getting vaccinated, recovering from vaccination
- Vax 2 the Max draws large number of New Mexicans to register for sweepstakes
- Meow Wolf plans for fall concerts
Thursday’s Five Facts
 New city program identifies ‘worst of the worst’ nuisance properties in Albuquerque The City of Albuquerque is now developing new ways of tackling rundown properties, attracting crime, and making some neighborhoods unsafe. The city unveiled its new Problematic Properties Program, allowing anyone to track the progress the city is making on getting problem properties either fixed up or demolished. The webpage highlights what officials are calling the 15 worst of the city’s approximately 300 rundown properties. City council is signing off on demolitions, but property owners still have a chance to appeal.
 Video shows scene where two men are found shot to death in car We’re getting a look at a bizarre scene officers came across when they found two people dead inside a car. That car was found on the pedestrian path below Carlisle and I-40 back in early May. State Police say the body of 39-year-old Thomas Crum was in the driver’s seat and 28-year-old Lee Benson was in the back seat. Both had been shot. Police are still trying to find out why they were there and how they knew each other. Both men had criminal records.
 Heatwave intensifies across the state We’re going to see the hottest temperatures of the year so far with many areas toppling 100 degrees south. The afternoon heat will even turn dangerous southeast towards Roswell, where we’ll be seeing record heat settling across the area. The high heat remains in place through the weekend with Albuquerque into the middle and upper 90s. This will be just shy of breaking records, as we were a couple of degrees warmer at this time in 1981. Otherwise, the haze continues to spill in from the west, worsening our air quality across western New Mexico and the metro area each morning.
 UNM joins President Biden’s vaccine initiative The University of New Mexico is adding itself to the list of schools participating in President Biden’s COVID-19 College Challenge. The Biden administration is partnering with local universities to ensure vaccinations are available for anyone who wants them. The goal is to organize events to make it easier for students, staff, and faculty to get vaccinated at sites closer to them this summer.
 Dutch Bros employee starts recycling initiative at Rio Rancho store A local Dutch Bros employee is making sure her store is being as environmentally friendly as possible. Kaela Chavez has been working at the location near 528 and Rio Rancho Blvd. since September and realized that they weren’t recycling. So in May, she convinced her store operator and coworkers to start recycling cans but it’s up to her to get it where it needs to go. Chavez says between her store and the other Rio Rancho location, they recycled 300 pounds of cans last month alone.