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Throughout most of the spring and summer, state-run prisons seemed to be doing a better job of beating back the virus. The number of state prisoners who tested positive for the novel coronavirus remained low.
In recent weeks, however, the virus has made inroads in all 11 state prisons from Roswell to Grants, infecting hundreds of inmates and staff.
It was the evening of Aug. 25, 2019, and William Berry, a 63-year-old former ski lift operator, had been arrested earlier that day for driving without a license.
He struggled to breathe in his cell at the Taos County Adult Detention Center and repeatedly asked the guards for his asthma medication. His requests were ignored, until finally, at 9 p.m., seven hours after Berry was booked, Sgt. Leroy Vigil told him to step out of his cell if he wanted his medicine, according to Berry.
By John Millerjmiller@taosnews.comA man sentenced to prison in 2017 for fatally shooting a woman outside his home in Taos is trying to persuade the courts that he should be temporarily transferred to …
The New Mexico Department of Corrections will commute the sentences of some prisoners and release them early to reduce prison populations and lower the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks, according to an order from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham."The early release of incarcerated individuals who are near their release date and meet certain criteria will help to protect public health without a concomitant risk to public safety," the executive order states. "This measure will serve to protect the health of those individuals, of staff and inmates at all state correctional facilities, and of all New Mexicans."
Though studies show solitary confinement can have a devastating effect on mental health, New Mexico Corrections Department workers for years have opposed reforms, calling the practice a crucial tool for keeping prisons safe.
Isaiah Trinity Cabrales couldn't take it anymore. The 20-year-old Las Cruces man had been in solitary confinement for seven months when he hanged himself …
New Mexico's prison system will have more inmates in the next few years than it currently has cells to hold them, the state sentencing commission's latest forecast says.The annual report shows New …