Judge approves penal reform settlement in New Mexico

New Mexico

SANTA FE, N.M. (The Santa Fe New Mexican) — A judge has given final approval to a settlement ending a 40-year-old civil case that forced significant penal reforms in New Mexico.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reported Friday that U.S. Magistrate Judge Kirtan Khalsa approved Friday an agreement that would end the Duran Consent Decree if the state complies with certain requirements.

The settlement says those requirements include moving about 300 inmates from overcrowded prisons to those with more capacity, requiring regular exterminator visits, prohibiting punishment for reporting sexual misconduct and banning facilities from operating at 120% of their capacity.

Corrections Secretary Alisha Tafoya Lucero did not respond to a request seeking comment Friday.

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