Records: Former Curry County jail administrator allowed to resign following settlement

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File photo Former Curry County jail administrator Lois Bean in 2009. A Sept. 7, 2010, settlement reached by the county and Bean amended her termination from the jail as a resignation and awarded Bean $69,500 and undisclosed attorney fees. CNJ staff Former Curry County jail Administrator Lois Bean was allowed to resign under a settlement […]

Former jail administrator paid $65,000 in settlement

CNJ staff Another insurance settlement paid out on behalf of Curry County that wasn’t made public was some $65,000 to former jail Administrator Lois Bean. County Attorney Stephen Doerr confirmed the settlement on Thursday during questioning about a $450,000 settlement paid a Clovis man for mistreatment while being held in the jail’s juvenile facility. Bean […]

Jail administrator says he’s saved by bringing inmates back in county

Robin Fornoff New jail Administrator Gerry Billy said Tuesday he’s already achieved “substantial savings” for the county by reducing the number of inmates being housed outside the county. Billy’s announcement was part of his first report to commissioners since assuming leadership at the jail three weeks ago. Billy said bringing inmates back to the Curry […]

Letters to the editor: Contractors not responsible for jail

Contractors not responsible for jail I find new Curry County jail administrator Gerry Billy’s comment (in Wednesday’s article), “Obviously the person who built the jail had never built a jail before,” offensive. “The person who built the jail” is obviously a contractor. A contractor places a “bid” for a specific job, which is laid out […]

New administrator talks jail priorities

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Gerry Billy Robin Fornoff Retired Ohio sheriff Gerry Billy doesn’t officially take over as administrator until Feb. 1, but he met with Curry County jail staff for about an hour Wednesday morning to get one thing straight. “I just wanted to reassure them it’s going to be OK,” Billy said afterward. “I worry most about […]

Jail administrator selection made

CNJ staff Curry County has reached a tentative agreement to bring Gerry Billy of Ohio as its next adult detention center administrator. A request to approve an employment contract for Billy is on Tuesday’s county commission meeting agenda. Former administrator Keith Norwood resigned in September, and Tori Sandoval has been acting as interim administrator since. […]

New jail administrator to report to commission

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File photo Curry County Detention Officer Cody Longenecker operates cell doors Tuesday and monitors cameras at the Curry County Detention Center from within the master control room. Robin Fornoff Whoever is picked as Curry County’s new jail administrator will report directly to county commissioners, not County Manager Lance Pyle, according to commission Chairman Caleb Chandler. […]

Negotiations approved for jail finalists

Robin Fornoff Negotiations with two finalists for the Curry County jail administrator’s position were authorized Tuesday by commissioners. County Manager Lance Pyle said he and County Attorney Stephen Doerr will begin negotiating with Gerry Billy as the first choice and Michael Williams as the second choice. Billy is a retired six-term (24 years) sheriff of […]

Curry County jail administrator search narrowed to four

Freedom New Mexico Four finalists including Interim Administrator Tori Sandoval were named Friday for the position of jail administrator, according to Curry County Manager Lance Pyle. Pyle identified the other three candidates as Gerry D. Billy of Newark, Ohio; Michael D. William of Selah, Wash., and Joe Sprunk of Albuquerque. Pyle also announced a committee […]

Four finalists named for top jail job

Freedom New Mexico Four finalists including Interim Administrator Tori Sandoval were named Friday for the position of jail administrator, according to Curry County Manager Lance Pyle. Pyle identified the other three candidates as Gerry D. Billy of Newark, Ohio; Michael D. William of Selah, Wash., and Joe Sprunk of Albuquerque. Pyle also announced a committee […]

Officials: More than one officer will face disciplinary action (updated)

David Stevens: Freedom editor More than one officer will face disciplinary action in connection with Sunday morning’s Curry County jail escape, and at least one has already been placed on paid administrative leave, county officials said. Interim jail administrator Tori Sandoval said Narcizo Soto Jr., 35, should never have been allowed to participate in the […]

Eight apply for jail position

CNJ staff Curry County has eight applicants for its open detention center administrator position, vacant since Keith Norwood resigned Sept. 6. Interim Administrator Tori Sandoval is one of the applicants for the position, along with: • Mark Anderson of Newcastle, Maine • Gerry Billy of Newark, Ohio • Michael Sales of Sundown, Texas • Carl […]

Curry jail administrator resigns

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CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks Curry County jail administrator Keith Norwood resigned effective Tuesday, saying it was time for a change and he was going bow hunting for big game. Robin Fornoff Curry County jail administrator Keith Norwood resigned effective Tuesday, saying it was time for a change and he was going bow hunting for […]

Our people: Coming full circle

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Liliana Castillo: Freedom New Mexico Melrose schools superintendent Jamie Widner comes from a family of 11 children. Melrose native Jamie Widner has been in education as a teacher and administrator for 26 years, all in New Mexico. Coming from a family of 11 children, all who graduated from Melrose High School, he is family-oriented. Widner […]

DA, jail administrator at odds on furloughs

Sharna Johnson A weekend medical furlough that ended with an inmate leading police on a high-speed chase through Curry County is an example of jail officials acting outside the scope of their duties, according to the district attorney. But the jail administrator says it’s ultimately up to the judge. Justin Steelman, 32, was released April […]

Pastor making new home in Portales

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Freedom New Mexico: Argen Duncan New administrator at the New Mexico Baptist Children’s Home, Randy Rankin, leans against a wall displaying the corner stone from the home’s previous facility, dating back to the early 1900s. Rankin said his calling in life is taking care of children. Argen Duncan The new administrator at the New Mexico […]

Commission gives jail administrator raise

Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Jail Administrator Keith Norwood will get a $1,500 raise and training he asked for but commissioners told him to pay for a concealed weapons permit himself. The 4-1 decision was made Thursday during a regular Curry County Commission meeting. “I too have a concealed carry permit (and) I’m an elected […]

Jail administrator requests raise, concealed weapons permit with contract renewal

Sharna Johnson With his contract set for automatic renewal, jail Administrator Keith Norwood is asking the county commission for a $1,500 raise, a concealed weapons permit and a CPR trainers class. Commissioners are expected to vote on his requests Thursday, which are part of the consent agenda. The consent agenda contains multiple items voted on […]

Ankle bracelet monitoring program approved

Liliana Castillo Commissioners unanimously approved an ankle bracelet monitoring contract Tuesday that the jail administrator says could save the county thousands in inmate housing costs. Administrator Keith Norwood said the program, which currently only has one participant, has the potential to save the county an average of more than $45 per day for each inmate. […]

Possible drugs found in jail lobby

CNJ staff Jail Administrator Keith Norwood said a detention officer found what appeared to be drugs Thursday in the lobby of the Curry County jail. Records show the discovery was reported just before midnight. Norwood described it as a “medium amount” of an unknown substance. The substance is being tested and the sheriff has taken […]