Family of man shot by neighbor says he was murdered

From - ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The family of a man shot by a neighbor in a northwest Albuquerque neighborhood says he was murdered. They say the man who shot 23-year-old Jonathan Mitchell was trying to play cop – and ended up gunning down a veteran.
     Police say residents in the Ventana Ranch neighborhood called 911 after Mitchell was seen standing in a neighbor’s driveway holding a gun. The neighbors also called neighbor Donnie Pearson for assistance. Pearson later pulled in front of Mitchell’s house and the two exchanged gunfire – with Mitchell firing first. Mitchell died from the gunshot wound.
     “This case almost mirrors the George Zimmerman case,” said Aaron Mitchell, Jonathan’s older brother and a Florida police officer. “[Pearson] had no business driving around looking for an armed assailant. That's not his job.”
     Mitchell’s brother Aaron Mitchell, a police officer in Florida, says APD was too quick to portray Pearson as a Good Samaritan. “My brother did fire first. But he fired because he saw a threat. He's military trained. He's a combat veteran,” he said.
     The family doesn’t know why Mitchell would have been in the neighbor’s driveway with a gun. “I think if those concerns were valid, I think a reasonable thing for a citizen to do is to call those who are sworn to protect, not take matters into their own hands,” his father Isaac said.
     APD will turn the results of its investigation over to the DA for a decision on charges. Read more

Senate committee may hold summer hearing on Skandera

From the Santa Fe New Mexican - by Robert Nott - The Senate Rules Committee may continue its confirmation hearing for Education Secretary-designate Hanna Skandera sometime this spring or summer. But even so, Skandera would have to wait until the next legislative session in early 2014 before the full Senate body can vote on her confirmation.
     During the recent 60-day legislative session, the Rules Committee held about 10 hours of testimony and questioning over three days of confirmation hearings on Skandera. But it didn't finish the process.
     The committee can vote to recommend or not recommend confirmation, but the full Senate makes the final call. If the Senate does not confirm Skandera, she will be fired from the position. Until that vote goes to the Senate floor, Skandera may continue to serve as secretary-designate. Read more