Cops and courts: Teen could be charged with careless driving

Prosecutors say a Questa teen who caused a motorcycle crash that left two Colorado men dead last year will not face vehicular homicide or involuntary manslaughter charges.

But District Attorney Matthew Chandler, who was appointed as a special prosecutor in the case, said 16-year-old Gerald Bailon could be charged with careless driving.

“Reviewing this case was extremely difficult; it wasn’t something that was taken lightly,” Chandler said.

State law doesn’t support the more serious charges, Chandler added.

Leslie Walker, 59, and Tim Serles, 41, both of Pueblo, died in the crash on Memorial Day weekend 2004.

The accident occurred on N.M. 38 between Questa and Red River, where a large bike rally is held every year on Memorial Day.

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The district attorney’s office has a new prosecutor.

Erin Sumrall was hired as an assistant trial prosecutor for the 9th Judicial District. She is from Grady and graduated from the Texas Tech School of Law in December of 2003, according to a press release from the prosecutor’s office.

She comes to the 9th Judicial District from Hobbs, where she was an associate attorney with Maddox and Holloman, P.C.

The district attorney’s office is now staffed with 35 employees, which includes five new positions recently approved and funded during the 2005 New Mexico legislative session, the release said.

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A Clovis woman was sent to prison for four years for violating conditions of probation, the district attorney’s office announced.

Audra Vaughn, 33, was found to have violated her probation by failure to report to her probation officer and failing to make restitution for several forged checks of which she was convicted in 2002, a press release from the district attorney’s office said.

She had also been arrested for DWI in January, the release said.

Her probation was revoked for the remainder of the term, which was just over four years, the release said. District Judge Joe Parker sentenced Vaughn to the Department of Corrections, with two years of parole following her incarceration, the release said.

Family could not be reached for comment.

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A Portales man last week was found guilty of trafficking cocaine and sentenced to four years in prison, according to a press release from the district attorney’s office.

Rickey Garmon, 53, will have to serve five years of supervised probation upon release from the Department of Corrections, the press release said.

The charges stem from a March 5, 2004, investigation, when officers were called to a Portales residence to investigate suspicious activity in a vehicle, the release said. After questioning the individual in the car, two baggies of crack cocaine were recovered from his pants, the release said.

Assistant District Attorney Dee Dee Hoxie prosecuted the case for the state.

Cops and Courts is compiled by CNJ staff writer David Irvin. The Associated Press contributed to this report. Irvin can be contacted at 763-6991 or: david_irvin@link.freedom.com