Hansel Dwaine Stinnett, age 84, of Springfield, Missouri, passed away February 11th, 2018, in the comfort of his home. Hansel was born in Hot Springs, Virginia to William Grant and Ethel Vivian Stinnett.
After completing High School, Hansel went on to serve in the Air Force for 22 years.
Hansel married Sharon Nipps on March 24th, 2011. He has four children, Curtis, Paul, William, and Robin from his wife, Verlaine.
Hansel is preceded in death by his wife Verlaine, his parents, brothers and sisters, and his daughter Robin.
Hansel is survived by his wife, Sharon; son, Curtis; son, Paul and wife Trulla; son, William and wife Deanna; 9 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren.
In his free time he enjoyed visiting with friends, doing yard work, and being with his family.
The visitation will be held Friday, February, 16th 2018 from two to four in the afternoon.
Memorial services will be ministered by Kim Miller at Mansfield Methodist Church on Saturday, February 17th, 2018 at two in the afternoon.
His arrangements have been entrusted to Walnut Lawn Funeral Home DeGraffenreid-Wood-Crematory, Springfield, MO.
Hansel Dwaine Stinnett, age 84, of Springfield, Missouri, passed away February 11th, 2018, in the comfort of his home. Hansel was born in Hot Springs, Virginia to William Grant and Ethel Vivian Stinnett.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic got the NBA’s All-Star weekend off to a running start.
Hield scored 29 points, and his Sacramento Kings teammate won the MVP award with 26 points and seven 3-pointers in the World’s 155-124 victory over the U.S. team in the Rising Stars Challenge on Friday night.
The annual showcase of the NBA’s top rookies and second-year players again served as the opening to the three-day All-Star festivities, which are being held in Los Angeles for the record sixth time.
But this show was headlined by two shooting stars from the upstate rivals of the hometown Lakers and Clippers, with Hield and Bogdanovic combining to hit 12 3-pointers.
The 10-man American team struggled to keep up with the 10-man team representing everywhere else, from Canada to Croatia to Cameroon. Eight of the World’s 10 players hit double figures, including 21 from Denver’s Jamal Murray, the Canadian MVP of this game last season with 36 points.
Hield, who is from the Bahamas, will be sorry to see the end of his eligibility for this game, in which he scored 28 points last season in New Orleans as a rookie with the Pelicans. The sweet-shooting Kings guard hit five 3-pointers.
Bogdanovic, from Serbia, was even better from long range, going 7 for 13 on 3-pointers and even adding six assists to earn MVP honors.
Boston’s Jaylen Brown led the U.S. with 35 points and 10 rebounds. Kyle Kuzma, the hometown Lakers’ promising rookie, added 20.
The biggest cheers at Staples Center went to Lakers youngsters Kuzma and Brandon Ingram, who both suited up for the U.S. team. The fans also roared for Lonzo Ball, who was selected for the U.S. roster but unable to play due to his lingering knee injury.
Ingram, who scored eight points, and Kuzma were both playing in their third game in three nights, including a loss at Minnesota on Thursday night. But they were the struggling marquee franchise’s only representatives at the latest All-Star weekend in its hometown.
The 16-time NBA champion Lakers (23-34), who also had Larry Nance Jr. in the dunk contest before trading him to Cleveland, are likely to miss the playoffs for a team-record fifth consecutive season.
The Clippers also are lightly represented in LA, with only Lou Williams in the skills competition and newly acquired Tobias Harris in the 3-point contest.
The World had better teamwork from the start, jumping to a 78-59 halftime lead with balanced scoring and nearly 56 percent shooting. Hield and Bogdanovic hit four 3-pointers apiece before halftime.
Joel Embiid provided the third quarter’s best highlight with a nimble spin move into a ferocious dunk while the World padded its lead out to 32 points in the third and 39 in the fourth.
The final seconds devolved into an uncontested dunk contest, and the Americans finally had a few highlights. Brown and Atlanta’s John Collins both threw down ferocious, acrobatic slams.
The Panthers have reinstated interim general manager Marty Hurney after an NFL investigation found no wrongdoing into charges of harassment by his ex-wife.
Hurney had been on a paid leave of absence during the investigation.
He is one of four candidates who have interviewed for the team’s permanent general manager position, which is expected to be filled soon.
The NFL said in a statement Friday that its “investigation identified no evidence to support an allegation of domestic violence or similar conduct that would constitute a violation of the personal conduct policy.”
The league said it requested to talk to his ex-wife Jeannie Hurney, but that she declined.
Marty Hurney said in a statement through his attorney that he’s “grateful” to be headed back to work after what he called “false claims” by his ex-wife.
His attorney, Kathleen Lucchesi, told The Associated Press in an email Friday Hurney was headed back to work immediately to begin preparations for the NFL draft and free agency.
Hurney’s interim contract is set to expire June 30.
“It’s been a very long two weeks for Marty and his family,” Lucchesi said in a statement emailed to AP. “In this digital age, it’s nearly impossible to overcome suspicion, defend yourself, and clear your name once the court of public opinion gets a hold of a false narrative. The public scrutiny can be devastating and unrelenting. In this case, it was also unnecessary.
“Words cannot express how thankful Marty is for the love and unwavering support of his family. He is grateful to the NFL for conducting a thorough investigation. He is also grateful for the continued confidence and support of the Panthers organization. Marty is looking forward to getting back to the work of building a strong and successful Panthers team for the 2018 season.”
The NFL said its investigation included a review of available law enforcement and court records, sworn testimony in prior proceedings, and interviews of multiple people including Hurney.
The Panthers placed Hurney on paid administrative leave on Feb. 4 when the NFL began an investigation into whether Hurney violated the league’s personal conduct policy after Jeannie Hurney unsuccessfully requested a temporary restraining order alleging her ex-husband harassed her.
Hurney remarried in 2016 and has a 14-month old child at home.
At that time Lucchesi told AP in an email that Hurney was “very upset” by the allegations “first, because they are not true, and second, because she made them at a time she and the rest of Charlotte knew Marty was interviewing for the GM job with the Panthers.”
The Panthers brought Hurney back to be their interim general manager last July after then-owner Jerry Richardson fired Dave Gettleman days before the start of training camp to provide some stability in the organization.
Hurney was the Panthers GM from 1998 through 2012 and is credited for building the core of a team that reached the Super Bowl two seasons ago.
Along with Hurney, the Panthers have also interviewed Bills assistant college scouting director Lake Dawson, Texans assistant general manager Jimmy Raye III and 49ers senior personnel executive Martin Mayhew for its permanent GM position.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Defensive coordinator Kevin Cosgrove will serve as acting football coach for New Mexico while head coach Bob Davie serves a 30-day suspension.
Athletic Director Eddie Nunez announced the appointment of Cosgrove as acting coach on Friday, a day after university President announced that Davie’s suspension will begin Saturday.
Abdallah announced the suspension last week after the school released the results of two recent investigations involving Davie and the football program.
The investigations examined whether Davie and his coaching staff interfered with criminal investigations or misconduct cases involving players.
UNM’s Board of Regents decided Tuesday not to accept Davie’s appeal of the suspension.
Davie is two seasons into a six-year contract that runs through the 2021 season and pays him $822,690 annually, not including bonuses and incentives.
OLEAN, N.Y. (AP) — Matt Mobley scored 26 points and grabbed a key rebound with 4.2 seconds left, and St. Bonaventure beat Rhode Island 77-74 to snap the 16th-ranked Rams’ 16-game winning streak on Friday night.
LaDarien Griffin scored 10 of the Bonnies last 14 points over the final six minutes in rallying them back from a 67-61 deficit — St. Bonaventure’s largest of the game. The Bonnies (20-6, 10-4 Atlantic 10) won their eighth straight and stayed in the hunt for the regular-season conference title.
Jared Terrell led the Rams with 23 points, but missed a potential go-ahead layup with 4.8 seconds left. Down 75-74, Terrell’s shot banked off the backboard and off the front of the rim and out. Mobley came down with the rebound and was fouled.
The Rams (21-3, 13-1 A-10) had not lost since dropping a 68-64 decision at Alabama on Dec. 6. Rhode Island’s winning streak was the longest active in the nation.
The loss also snapped Rhode Island’s 21-game winning streak in conference play, dating to 53-43 loss against Fordham on Feb. 15, 2017.
The game wasn’t decided until after the teams traded leads three times in the final 56 seconds.
The Bonnies went ahead 73-72 after Griffin scored four consecutive points by first putting back his own miss and then hitting two free throws with 56 seconds left. He was fouled while pulling down a defensive rebound after Terrell missed an awkward jumper.
Rhode Island’s Cyril Langevine hit two free throws after he was fouled while attempting a dunk to put the Rams back up 74-73.
Griffin, who finished with 14 points and eight rebounds, then scored the go-ahead basket with 21.5 seconds left when teammate Jaylen Adams found him alone beneath the basket.
Adams, the Bonnies leading scorer, struggled in finishing 2 of 12 for 10 points.
Rams guard E.C. Matthews scored all of his 14 points in the second half in playing three days after hurting his left knee late in the first half of an 85-67 win over Richmond.
The game was played in front of a packed, loud and occasionally profane Reilly Center crowd that made for an electric atmosphere in what was described as one of the more highly anticipated games in recent memory.
The Bonnies haven’t made the NCAA tournament since 2012, and have attracted some national attention for their performance this season, including receiving three votes in the latest AP poll.
The first half was played so tightly it featured 13 lead changes and the largest lead was the Rams up 36-32 with 2:04 left, when Terrell hit a 3-pointer off a transition break. The Bonnies, who led by no more than 3, closed the half by scoring the final five points, capped by Griffin’s dunk with 35 seconds remaining.
Rams coach Dan Hurley kept forward Andre Berry in the game for three minutes after he appeared hobbled by an injury to his left ankle in the first two minutes of the second half. It wasn’t until a timeout at 15:31 when Berry left the game and was escorted by a team official to the locker room. He then returned to the bench about a minute later and began riding a stationary bike but never returned to action.
BANG THE CHAIR
Hurley let his emotions show — as he often does — during a timeout with 11:45 left and the game tied at 50. He banged the feet of his folding chair on the court to catch his players’ attention.
At least one Bonnies fan crossed the line. Fans in the end zone nearest the Rhode Island bench were warned during the first half when someone threw a wad a paper at the Rams players during a huddle. A technical foul was called with 12:48 left in the second half when something else was thrown during a timeout and picked up by Hurley. A fan was identified and escorted out of the arena.
Rhode Island: With four games left, still has the inside track to clinch school’s first A-10 regular season title.
St. Bonaventure: The Bonnies gave their chances of an at-large NCAA bid a nice boost.
Rhode Island: at La Salle on Tuesday.
St. Bonaventure: hosts Duquesne on Wednesday.
Turns out, the New York Mets were ready and willing to spend this winter. More than just a few bucks, too.
All-Star pitcher Jason Vargas and the Mets agreed to a $16 million, two-year contract Friday, adding depth to a New York rotation that’s been riddled by injuries the past two seasons.
The deal is pending a physical, a person familiar with the agreement said, speaking on condition of anonymity because it had not been announced.
Another person familiar with the contract said it includes an $8 million club option for 2020 with a $2 million buyout, and Vargas can earn up to $1.5 million each year in performance bonuses. That person also spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was pending a physical and had not been announced.
Vargas went 18-11 with a 4.16 ERA for Kansas City last season, making his first All-Star team and tying for the major league lead in wins. He faded in the second half, however, and the 35-year-old lefty had been among more than 85 free agents seeking a job as spring training opened this week.
While other teams have been reluctant to shop, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, perhaps sensing an opportunity for bargains, got busy filling holes and adding pieces late in the offseason. He signed free agent right fielder Jay Bruce, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, third baseman Todd Frazier and infielder Jose Reyes before rounding out the haul with Vargas.
Coming off a 70-92 season that followed consecutive playoff appearances, New York also signed reliever Anthony Swarzak to a $14 million, two-year contract in December.
All told, the Mets have guaranteed a little more than $88 million to free agents this offseason, after ownership was criticized by fans early on for being stingy.
Vargas, traded by the Mets to Seattle in December 2008, could be in camp with New York by Monday. He would join a gifted but fragile rotation that includes three other All-Stars in Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard and former ace Matt Harvey, who can become a free agent after this season.
Harvey, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler, in particular, have spent much of the past two years on the disabled list. Even when they did pitch last season, they mostly struggled.
Vargas would give the Mets another accomplished starter, this one a soft-tossing lefty to go with all their power arms. He also would be reunited with new pitching coach Dave Eiland, who held the same job in Kansas City, where Vargas compiled a 34-23 record over the past four years.
New manager Mickey Callaway has expressed interest in using a six-man rotation at times. Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo and Rafael Montero also provide insurance.
Syndergaard, deGrom, Harvey, Matz and Wheeler were all fully healthy when camp opened this week, the Mets said.
The move also means five of New York’s top six starters have undergone Tommy John surgery at some point in their professional careers. Vargas had his left elbow ligament replaced in 2015 and made just three starts in 2016 before throwing 179 2/3 innings over 32 outings last season.
Before getting injured, Vargas was 5-2 with a 3.98 ERA in nine starts for the 2015 Royals team that beat the Mets in the World Series. He did not pitch in the playoffs that year, but went 1-0 with a 3.52 ERA over three postseason starts for Kansas City in 2014.
Vargas is 85-81 with a 4.17 ERA in 12 big league seasons with the Marlins, Mets, Mariners, Angels and Royals. He surpassed 192 innings each year from 2010-12 and threw 187 in 2014.
The left-hander made two starts for the Mets in 2007, going 0-1 with a 12.19 ERA. He missed the 2008 season because of a torn labrum in his hip.
Vargas was 12-3 with a 2.22 ERA after winning his seventh straight start on June 30 last year. His ERA rose to 4.23 when he lost his fourth in a row on Sept. 5, but then he won four of his final five outings.
With the Mets, Vargas would get $250,000 each for 160, 170, 180, 190, 200 and 210 innings pitched. The contract also includes a $250,000 assignment bonus if he’s traded.
The agreement was first reported by FanRag Sports, and the contract terms were first reported by MLB.com.
PHOENIX (AP) — Pitchers Dan Straily of Miami and Brandon Maurer of Kansas City lost their salary arbitration cases Friday, leaving players with an 11-10 lead with only Cincinnati second baseman Scooter Gennett awaiting a decision.
The 22 hearings are the most since players went 14-10 in 1990. Just five players settled among the 27 players who swapped proposed salaries with their teams last month.
Straily was awarded $3,375,000 instead of his $3.55 million request by arbitrators James Darby, Sylvia Skratek and Edna Francis, who heard the case Thursday. A 29-year-old right-hander, Straily was 10-9 with a 4.26 ERA in his first season after Miami acquired him from Cincinnati. He tied for the NL lead with 33 starts.
Straily was eligible for the first time after earning $552,100 last year.
Maurer will earn $2.95 million instead of his $3.5 million request in a decision by Matt Goldberg, Dan Brent and Jeanne Wood. The 27-year-old right-hander was 3-6 with a 6.52 ERA in 68 relief appearances for San Diego and Kansas City, which acquired him July 24. He made $1.9 million.
He became the first Kansas City player to go to a hearing since outfielder Emil Brown won in 2006 — 3½ months before Dayton Moore replaced Allard Baird as general manager.
Gennett asked Dennis Archer, Steven Wolf for a raise from $2,525,000 to $5.7 million, and the Reds argued for $5.1 million. A decision is expected Saturday.
Gennett hit .295 last year and set career bests with 27 homers and 95 RBIs. On June 6, he hit four homers in a game.
With many teams adopting “file and trial” strategies, the only players who reached agreements after the Jan. 12 exchange of proposed salaries were Houston outfielder George Springer, Baltimore second baseman Jonathan Schoop, Orioles pitcher Kevin Gausman, Detroit shortstop Jose Iglesias and Pittsburgh left-hander Felipe Rivero.
Back in favor at Leicester, Riyad Mahrez helped the team reach the FA Cup quarterfinals by resuming his lethal partnership with Jamie Vardy on Friday.
Vardy earned Leicester a 1-0 win over second-tier Sheffield United in the fifth round by heading in a cross from Mahrez, who was starting for the first time since the collapse of his move to Manchester City at the end of the January transfer window.
Mahrez spent more than a week in self-imposed exile after being denied a transfer to the English Premier League leader, missing two games and a string of training sessions.
He began his reintegration by going on as a substitute last weekend — coincidentally in a league match against Man City — and was given a standing ovation by Leicester fans when substituted in injury time on Friday. He applauded them back.
“The most important thing in the game was the fans supported Riyad,” Leicester manager Claude Puel said, “and when I replaced him, it was a good feeling with the fans. It’s important to stay united about this.”
Chelsea also advanced against opposition from the League Championship, beating Hull 4-0 with Willian scoring twice and Olivier Giroud netting his first goal since joining from Arsenal.
Vardy and Mahrez linked up to devastating effect when Leicester stunned the soccer world by winning the Premier League in 2016.
During that memorable season, Vardy set a record by scoring in 11 straight league games and the England striker is on another run, having scored in five straight games in all competitions.
His latest goal was a far-post header that looped over the goalkeeper in the 66th minute, following a cross from the right by Mahrez.
“To see Riyad and Jamie play together again on the pitch was a good feeling,” Puel said.
The goal would have given Vardy extra satisfaction, considering he is a boyhood Sheffield Wednesday fan.
PASSING THE AUDITION
With Eden Hazard rested, this was a chance for other members of Chelsea’s attack to stake a claim for a starting place in next week’s Champions League match against Barcelona.
They didn’t disappoint.
Giroud, Willian and Pedro Rodriguez, the three-pronged forward line, all scored in the first half against Hull as Chelsea roared into a 4-0 lead by the 42nd minute.
Both of Willian’s strikes were from outside the area and came off passes by Giroud, who scored the fourth with a neat near-post finish from a cross by debutant Emerson Palmieri. Cesc Fabregas set up Pedro’s goal with a superb pass over the defense.
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte now has plenty of options up front for the last-16 first leg against Barcelona, with Giroud vying with fit-again Alvaro Morata for the striker spot while Pedro and Willian are competing for a place alongside Hazard.
“For sure when I go home, I have many good doubts,” Conte said.
Chelsea reached the quarterfinals for the 12th time in 17 seasons.
The rest of the fifth round takes place from Saturday to Monday, with the two Manchester clubs and Tottenham still involved.
City finishes off the round by visiting third-tier Wigan in a repeat of the 2013 final won surprisingly by Wigan.
United visits Huddersfield on Saturday, when it’s also: Sheffield Wednesday vs. Swansea, West Bromwich Albion vs. Southampton; and Brighton vs. Coventry. Tottenham is away to fourth-tier Rochdale on Sunday.
GIRONA, Spain (AP) — Girona continued to impress in its debut season in Spain’s first division by beating Leganes 3-0 for a fourth consecutive home win on Friday.
Christian Stuani and Cristian “Portu” Portugues added to their team-leading goal tallies with strikes to decide the result before halftime.
Stuani converted a penalty in the 23rd minute after Martin Mantovani used his hand to divert a cross destined for the Girona striker.
Portu doubled the hosts’ advantage in the 36th after he led a solo counterattack and blasted the ball over goalkeeper Ivan Cuellar from a tight angle.
Juan Ramirez claimed the last with a header at the end.
Girona rose into eighth place, just two points from sixth place and the last of two Europa League spots.
The goal was Stuani’s 13th, good for fourth in the league after Lionel Messi (20), Luis Suarez (16) and Celta Vigo’s Iago Aspas (15).
Girona captain Eloi Amagat made his long-awaited first division debut late in the second half. The 32-year-old midfielder had yet to play this season. Previously, Amagat played in the second, third, and fourth divisions over the nine years he has been at the club.
“I had been waiting a long time for this, too long. I am happy to have debuted in the first division, and to do so at home, in front of our fans,” Amagat said.
“We are surprising even ourselves,” Amagat said about Girona’s campaign. “Our goal has to be to make sure we avoid relegation. But we have hungry players and we will be ambitious and take whatever we can achieve.”
Girona earned promotion to the topflight last season for the first time in its 87-year history. That was followed by Manchester City’s Abu Dhabi ownership buying a 44.3 percent stake in the Catalan club in August.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Tiger Woods waited 12 years to get back to Riviera and lasted only two days.
Woods had three straight bogeys early on the back nine Friday and didn’t play well enough to make up for his misses. He had a 5-over 76 and missed the cut in the Genesis Open for the first time in nine appearances as a pro.
He was at 6-over 148, one shot worse than his PGA Tour debut as a 16-year-old at Riviera.
“I missed every tee shot left and I did not putt well, didn’t feel very good on the greens,” Woods said. “And consequently, never made a run. I knew I had to make a run on that back nine, and I went the other way.”
Patrick Cantlay ran off three straight birdies toward the end of his morning round, starting with a tap-in on the par-3 sixth when he missed a hole-in-one by a fraction of an inch, and shot a 69. He was tied with Graeme McDowell (66), the former U.S. Open champion who is trying to work his way back from a two-year slump.
They were at 7-under 135.
Sam Saunders also was at 7 under, making back-to-back birdies until it was too dark to continue. He had three holes remaining in his second round. Ryan Moore bogeyed his final hole for a 68 and was one shot behind at 136.
Woods plans to stick around for the weekend because his TGR Foundation hosts the event, one reason he played Riviera for the first time since 2006. Just as his second round was starting, the Honda Classic announced he would be playing next week at PGA National in Florida.
“I need some tournament rounds,” Woods said.
Riviera was tough on everyone with the firm conditions under two days of full sunshine. Woods started on the cut line, and sandwiched a pair of 20-foot birdie putts around a bogey at the par-3 fourth. But there were two stretches where he fell apart.
He came up well short of the green — with the pin in a bowl to the back left — and took bogey on No. 6. From a fairway bunker on the next hole, he hit the lip and the ball caromed off to the side. And with a wedge in hand from 117 yards on the ninth, he put it in a front bunker and dropped another shot.
Then, after a brilliant play off the tee that set up a rare tap-in birdie on the reachable 10th, he three-putted the par-5 11th from 40 feet and the 12th from 80 feet, followed by a pulled tee shot on No. 13 that clanged off the trees and left him a 3-iron into the green instead of a wedge. He pulled that left and made a third straight bogey.
Woods three-putted the 16th from about 25 feet.
During an 11-hole stretch starting with No. 3, he made only one par. He hit good shots, but his game was not nearly sharp enough to atone for far too many mistakes, especially on a track like Riviera.
“I haven’t played golf in years,” Woods said after his third PGA Tour event since August 2015 because of back surgeries. “I’m starting to come back and it’s going to take a little time. I am progressing, I’m starting to get a feel for tournament golf again. I just need to clean up my rounds.”
Rory McIlroy overcame a few short misses on the front nine for a 69 and was at 2-under 140.
“He is very close,” McIlroy said about Woods. “Give him a little bit of time.”
Cantlay was coming off a three-putt bogey when his tee shot at the par-3 sixth — the hole with a bunker in the middle of the green — landed above the flag and to the right, and then rolled back down the slope just over the right edge of the cup.
“I actually missed a little to the right, but it’s a bowl back there so as long as you get the number right, it should be pretty close,” Cantlay said.
He followed with a short iron into 5 feet for birdie, a 15-foot birdie on the next hole and then a wild drive that led to a bogey on his final hole.
McDowell has gone 59 starts worldwide since his last victory and has fallen out of the top 200 in the world. He had missed four straight cuts dating to late last year, though he felt he was hitting it well in practice. What helped was seeing some good scores.
“All I’m missing is a couple little numbers and a little bit of confidence,” McDowell said.
Defending champion Dustin Johnson shot a 69 and gets to stick around for the weekend. He was at 1-over 143. Bubba Watson, who won in 2014 and 2016, has fallen out of the top 200 in the world after a two-year drought. He shot a 70 and was at 4-under 138, and then headed for the NBA All-Star weekend to play in the celebrity game.
NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Miguel Angel Jimenez eagled the par-5 third hole and shot an 8-under 64 on Friday to take a one-stroke lead in the PGA Tour Champions’ Chubb Classic.
Jimenez birdied four of the first seven holes on TwinEagles’ Talon course. On his back nine, he bogeyed No. 1, eagled No. 3 and birdied Nos. 4, 7 and 8 — hitting to 2 1/2 feet on the seventh and 3 1/2 feet on the eighth.
“I did not play great, played solid,” Jimenez said.
The 54-year-old Spaniard successfully defended his Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic title last year for his fourth senior title. He won 21 times on the European Tour, the last in 2014. A year ago at TwinEagles, Jimenez was tied for the first-round lead after a 65 and ended up finishing second behind Fred Couples.
“This is a very nice golf course,” Jimenez said. “As long as you hit it good, you will make birdies, but if you no hit it good, you will not. Tough to make birdie some days, no?”
Gary Hallberg and David Frost were tied for second — with some help from their peers.
Hallberg birdied the last three and had nine birdies and two bogeys in his season debut. Playing on a sponsor exemption, he got some swing help from Lanny Wadkins on Thursday.
“Lanny’s a good pal and he’s a Wake Forest contemporary, if you will,” Hallberg said. “We went and hit a few balls at the back of the range and he pointed out something to me and I committed to doing what he said. You know what? It really, really paid off. I can’t tell you what it is.”
Frost had a 6-under 30 in the front nine, also making an eagle on No. 3. The South African is using a new putter made by former tour player Kenny Knox, a model he noticed an amateur partner using Monday in Jack Nicklaus’ pro-am.
“I called Kenny on Monday night, and I said, ‘Kenny, I need one of those putters, man.'” Frost said. “So, he overnighted one to me and I got it on Thursday morning. I paid for it, and I putted with it today, putted beautifully. Thanks to Kenny, I rolled the ball beautifully.”
Scott McCarron, Kevin Sutherland, Lee Janzen, Jesper Parnevik and Glen Day shot 66.
John Daly was at 68 along with Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly. Three-time champion Bernhard Langer had a 69. Mark Calcavecchia, a two-stroke winner over Langer last week in Boca Raton, shot 73.
ROTTERDAM, Netherlands (AP) — Roger Federer added another highlight to his age-defying career resurgence by returning to the top of the world rankings on Friday after more than five years and becoming the oldest No. 1 at 36.
“What an amazing run it’s been and a journey it’s been for me … to clinch world No. 1,” said Federer, who won three of the last five Grand Slams to put him on track to the top.
Beating leading Dutch player Robin Haase 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 in the quarterfinals at the ABN AMRO World Tournament means Federer becomes the oldest player – male or female – to top the tennis rankings. He surpasses Andre Agassi, who held the men’s record at age 33.
“Getting to No. 1 and enjoying it right here at 36, almost 37 years old is an absolute dream come true,” Federer said. “I can’t believe it.”
Federer will leapfrog 31-year-old Rafael Nadal to No. 1 when the rankings are updated on Monday.
Also a record will be the five-years-plus which have elapsed since Federer was last No. 1, and the 14 years since he first reached the top spot.
“This one, because I’m a little bit older, is a little bit more special maybe, because there’s just so much that has to go into it, so much has to be right for it to work out, and it did so. It’s a very deep satisfaction,” Federer said.
On Monday, he will extend his record of 302 weeks at No. 1 since the rankings began in 1973. Pete Sampras is a distant second with 286 weeks at the top. Novak Djokovic is the closest active player, with 223 weeks at No. 1.
“Reaching No. 1 is one of, if not the ultimate achievement in our sport,” Federer said.
“Sometimes at the beginning you get there just because you play so well. Later, you sometimes try to fight it back and you wrest it back from somebody else who deserved to be there, and when you’re older you feel like you have to put maybe double the work in. So this one maybe means the most to me throughout my career.”
Federer, the 2005 and 2012 ABN AMRO champion, plays lucky loser Andreas Seppi of Italy in the semifinals on Saturday. Seppi beat qualifier Daniil Medvedev of Russia 7-6 (4), 4-6, 6-3.
Federer won the Australian Open in January for his 20th Grand Slam title and edged closer to the top of the rankings. He had not originally planned to play in Rotterdam but accepted a wild card when it became clear he might be able to take back the top spot. Nadal hasn’t played since retiring hurt in the Australian Open quarterfinals.
Haase made clear he was going to make Federer fight, and broke him in the ninth game and fired an ace to take the set 6-4.
But Federer stepped up a gear and blew Haase away in the second set, reeling off 11 straight points to race to 3-0 in taking the set 6-1.
Federer then broke Haase twice early in the third for 3-0, and swept to the victory.
Earlier, Grigor Dimitrov beat Andrey Rublev 6-3, 6-4 to reach the semifinals, where he will meet 2017 finalist David Goffin, who progressed when his quarterfinal opponent Tomas Berdych pulled out sick.
Federer’s success so far in Rotterdam has come despite spending four hours a day watching highlights from the Winter Olympics in South Korea.
“I’m like the No. 1 cheerleader of the Swiss squad,” he said.
DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Caroline Wozniacki outlasted former No. 1 Angelique Kerber 7-6 (4), 1-6, 6-3 in the Qatar Open quarterfinals and ensured she retained the top ranking from Simona Halep on Friday.
No. 2-ranked Halep reached the semifinals with a dominating win, though she promptly withdrew with a right foot injury.
Wozniacki had to at least match her to stay No. 1, and the new Australian Open champion was pushed for almost 2 1/2 hours before prevailing.
Kerber led 5-3 but Wozniacki had a set point before taking it in a tiebreaker.
Kerber rushed her in the second set and broke early in the third. But Wozniacki broke straight back and her superior fitness shone in some long rallies.
The Dane will meet Petra Kvitova in the semifinals after her match against Julia Goerges ended early when the German retired with a hip injury while trailing 6-4, 2-1.
After beating American qualifier Catherine Bellis 6-0, 6-4, Halep announced her withdrawal from the semis on Saturday, when she was scheduled to play Garbine Muguruza.
Muguruza beat Caroline Garcia of France 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 in the quarterfinals.
“I am surprised that I could play three matches and win them,” Halep, the 2014 champion, said. “I felt pain every day, so it was not easy to manage it.
“I didn’t have much time to recover before this tournament, but today was too much, and I decided to stop.
“The MRI shows I have fluid and also tendinitis at the fourth toe, so I have to take care of it and think about my health first.”
Halep also withdrew from next week’s Dubai Open, another tournament she has won, and the Romanian said she did not expect to be back in action for more than two weeks, until Indian Wells.
Halep relinquished No. 1 after losing to Wozniacki in the Australian Open final.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Johnny Sauter won the season-opening NASCAR Truck Series race Friday night at Daytona International Speedway for his third victory at the famed track.
Sauter used a big run to pass David Gilliland for the lead with eight laps to go and then held off Justin Haley, Joe Nemechek, Ben Rhodes and Scott Lagasse Jr. None of those chasers provided much of a challenge down the stretch.
Sauter dedicated the win to crew chief Joe Shear Jr., whose wife died unexpectedly in late December.
It was Sauter’s 18th victory in 222 starts in the Truck Series. He previously won at Daytona in 2013 and ’16.
Sauter took the No. 21 Chevrolet to victory lane after a series of late crashes wiped out about half the 32-truck field. Only 15 trucks finished on the lead lap, and only nine of those were in the lead pack in the closing laps.
The single-file racing made it considerably easier for Sauter to hold off the competition.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Never before has one race displayed NASCAR’s rapidly changing look more than this year’s Daytona 500.
Three drivers under age 25 will start in the first two rows, new rules will make the cars difficult to drive and NASCAR’s longtime most popular driver will watch from the sidelines.
NASCAR begins its season Sunday with the 60th running of “The Great American Race” and Alex Bowman on the pole .
Who? Well, the guy who got Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s coveted seat at Hendrick Motorsports when concussions forced the superstar to retire. Bowman is 24 and had washed out of NASCAR once before when he got the call to help during Earnhardt’s absence. Team owner Rick Hendrick gave him a car capable of earning the top starting spot for the biggest race of the year , and after nearly a full year out of a race car, Bowman will lead the field to green.
“I haven’t speedway raced in a year, so it’s going to be tough,” Bowman said. “I have to get my feet back under me as far as speedway racing goes.”
Bowman has given no indication how his car will handle because, in an effort to keep it safe for the Daytona 500, he dropped to the back of the field during his qualifying race and avoided drafting. Hendrick teammate Chase Elliott took the opposite approach, won his qualifying race and earned a starting spot in the second row.
Elliott is 22 and one of NASCAR’s budding stars. His peers believe he’ll replace Earnhardt in fan voting for NASCAR’s most popular driver , and Hendrick gave him a boost this year by switching Elliott’s car number to No. 9 so the driver can honor his Hall of Fame father, Bill.
“Car looks good. I’m a little biased, but the 9 looks good on top of the scoring pylon,” Elliott said after Thursday night’s victory. “I would love to have it there more throughout the season.”
Elliott is still seeking his first points victory in the Cup Series after five runner-up finishes last season. He won his Daytona qualifying race last year, too, but ran out of gas racing for the Daytona 500 victory.
Elliott will be Hendrick’s answer to the Ford brigade that has so far been led by Team Penske at Daytona. Ford drivers won all four restrictor-plate races last season, including Kurt Busch’s victory in the Daytona 500 , and Penske drivers Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney have one win apiece this Speedweeks. Blaney’s victory in the qualifying race put him on the second row for the start next to Elliott, and teammate Joey Logano is right behind Blaney.
Logano, winner of the Daytona 500 in 2015, has two runner-up finishes in Speedweeks behind his teammates. Keselowski is the Las Vegas betting favorite to win the race, but Blaney absolutely should be in the mix. In fact, Roger Penske appears to have three entries all capable of winning the race .
Should they find themselves lined up 1-2-3 — the way they’ve run most of Speedweeks — on the final lap of the Daytona 500, they know the boss expects one of them to win.
“Our team orders are to work together as best you can, but it’s a race. Roger expects us to race for wins,” Logano said. “It’s a challenge when you’re all racing for the win. There’s a lot on the line. That’s probably one of the most challenging times for teammates, is to be able to work together. It’s probably the most stress on a relationship, with a team.”
Ford drivers have speed, but 2007 winner Kevin Harvick noted the cars are much harder to drive under new NASCAR technical regulations. The sentiment was shared by Busch, who, like Harvick, is considered among the most talented in car control, so their gripes could be an indication NASCAR has gone too far.
“I wasn’t very comfortable to pull on the wheel like I needed to, to be aggressive in making moves and blocking, all the things I needed,” Harvick said after his qualifying race.
If teams can’t make some gains by Sunday, passing could be difficult in the race. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., winner of two plate races last season, was admittedly “greedy” in his qualifying race when he made aggressive moves to try to figure out the draft. He twice spun competitors not because he made contact with their cars, but because Stenhouse sucked the air away from their cars and caused them to lose control.
If drivers can’t solve that problem before the Daytona 500, it could be an ugly race. NASCAR could have a single-car parade for some 400 miles, or the lack of experience in the field could lead to youthful mistakes.
Remember, Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart and Dale Earnhardt Jr. retired in three consecutive seasons. Carl Edwards walked away after the 2016 season and Matt Kenseth, a two-time Daytona 500 winner, has no ride in 2018. The Daytona 500 also will be Danica Patrick’s NASCAR finale.
The rapid driver turnover has created a 40-car field that includes six drivers under age 30 in the first eight spots.
Also racing in the Daytona 500 is 66-year-old Mark Thompson. He’s the anomaly, though, as the field has a considerably youthful feel.
“If you look at the starting grid from the Daytona 500 five years ago and you look at it today, it’s just amazing how much the image of NASCAR has changed,” said 2016 race winner Denny Hamlin, who will start second.
“I’d say four or five years ago, there was so many older veteran drivers that it was just very calm for a long period of the race, and I think that this year with the big youth movement, it has a potential to be more on edge for a longer period of time.”
PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) — The FBI received a tip last month that the suspect in the Florida school shooting had a “desire to kill” and access to guns and could be plotting an attack, but agents failed to investigate, the agency said Friday. Florida Gov. Rick Scott called for the FBI’s director to resign because of the missteps.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the shooting that killed 17 people Wednesday was a “tragic consequence” of the FBI’s failure and ordered a review of the Justice Department’s processes. He said it’s now clear that the nation’s premier law enforcement agency missed warning signs.
In more evidence that there had been signs of trouble with the suspect, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said at a Friday news conference that his office had received more than 20 calls about Nikolas Cruz in the past few years.
A person close to Cruz called the FBI’s tip line on Jan. 5 and provided information about Cruz’s weapons and his erratic behavior, including his disturbing social media posts. The caller was concerned that Cruz could attack a school.
In a statement, the agency acknowledged that the tip should have been shared with the FBI’s Miami office and investigated, but it was not. The startling admission came as the agency was already facing criticism for its treatment of a tip about a YouTube comment posted last year. The comment posted by a “Nikolas Cruz” said, “Im going to be a professional school shooter.”
The FBI investigated the remark but did not determine who made it.
The 19-year-old Cruz has been charged with killing 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, north of Miami.
FBI Director Christopher Wray said the agency, which received an average of 2,101 calls to the tip line each day in 2017, was still reviewing its missteps on the January tip. He said he was “committed to getting to the bottom of what happened,” as well as assessing the way the FBI responds to information from the public.
“We have spoken with victims and families and deeply regret the additional pain this causes all those affected by this horrific tragedy,” Wray said in the statement.
Florida’s governor sharply criticized the federal law enforcement agency Friday, calling the FBI’s failure to take action “unacceptable.”
“Seventeen innocent people are dead and acknowledging a mistake isn’t going to cut it,” Scott said. “… The families will spend a lifetime wondering how this could happen, and an apology will never give them the answers they desperately need.”
The FBI is already under intense scrutiny for its actions in the early stages of the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential campaign. President Donald Trump and some congressional Republicans have seized on what they see as signs of anti-Trump bias.
The president has repeatedly slammed the agency and its leaders, writing on Twitter that its reputation was in “tatters.”
On Friday evening, Trump visited a Florida hospital where he greeted medical staff and thanked the doctors, nurses and first responders who helped the shooting victims. He told reporters he also met with some of the victims who are still hospitalized. He later met with members of the Broward County Sheriff’s office and local law enforcement, including Coconut Creek Police Officer Mike Leonard, who said he was the one who apprehended Cruz.
Also Friday, mourners gathered for the first funeral for a shooting victim, packing the Star of David chapel to remember 14-year-old Alyssa Alhadeff. From outside the chapel, other mourners strained to hear the voices chanting Jewish prayers and remembering the star soccer player as having “the strongest personality.” She was also remembered as a creative writer with a memorable smile.
At a later funeral for 18-year-old Meadow Pollack, her father’s angered boiled over. With more than 1,000 mourners including Scott packed into Temple K’ol Tikvah, Andrew Pollack looked down at the plain pine coffin of his daughter and yelled, “You killed my kid!” referring to Cruz.
A day earlier, details of Wednesday’s attack emerged, showing how the assailant moved through the school in just minutes before escaping with the same students he had targeted.
Cruz jumped out of an Uber car and walked toward building 12 of the school, carrying a black duffel bag and a black backpack. He slipped into the building, entered a stairwell and extracted a rifle from his bag, authorities said. He shot into four rooms on the first floor then went upstairs and shot a single victim on the second floor.
He ran to the third floor, where according to a timeline released by the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, three minutes passed before he dropped the rifle and backpack, ran back down the stairs and quickly blended in with panicked, fleeing students.
Florida State Sen. Bill Galvano, who visited the third floor, said authorities told him it appeared that Cruz tried to fire point-blank out the third-floor windows at students as they were leaving the school, but the high-impact windows did not shatter.
The sheriff clarified Friday that Cruz never had a gas mask or smoke grenades during the attack, but officers did find a balaclava. Israel said his office would be investigating every one of the previous calls about Cruz to see how they were handled.
Authorities have not described any specific motive, except to say that Cruz had been kicked out of the high school, which has about 3,000 students and serves an affluent suburb where the median home price is nearly $600,000. Students who knew him described a volatile teenager whose strange behavior had caused others to end friendships.
HOUSTON (AP) — Sheriff’s deputies didn’t pursue a sexual assault investigation against the gunman in a mass shooting at a Texas church, even though the woman reporting it signed a complaint detailing the alleged attack, according to records released Friday.
The records also contradict the reason previously given for why the case stalled against Devin Patrick Kelley, four years before the November 2017 massacre at a tiny church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.
Had Kelley been prosecuted for sexual assault, a conviction could have stopped a trail of violent allegations that culminated in the shooting.
Authorities acknowledged Friday that the alleged victim was not given a forensic exam in June 2013 after reporting the assault, which she said had occurred three days earlier. And the investigation was listed as inactive because a detective at the Comal County sheriff’s office couldn’t contact Kelley, thinking he had moved. It remained inactive even after deputies were called to Kelley’s home in February 2014 to investigate a separate domestic violence complaint against him.
“This was an error on the part of the sheriff’s office,” Comal County Sheriff Mark Reynolds told The Associated Press on Friday.
Kelley shot and killed 25 people on Nov. 5, 2017, at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs. Authorities have put the official death toll at 26, because one of the victims was pregnant. Kelley died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after being shot and chased by two residents when he was leaving the church, authorities have said.
By that time, Kelley had been court-martialed and removed from the Air Force on allegations that he abused his then-wife and a child. The following year, deputies were called to his home to investigate a domestic violence complaint, and he was accused of misdemeanor animal cruelty in Colorado.
The records released Friday include a handwritten statement from the woman who accused Kelley of sexual assault. She wrote that Kelley pinned her down in his room at his parents’ home on June 15, 2013.
“He told me would hurt me when I didn’t do what he said,” she wrote.
The statement is dated June 18, 2013. The records also include a signed complaint agreement to press charges that included a warning that making a false statement was a crime.
Her signature is blacked out on the agreement, as are any references to her name. But the records also include a statement from Kelley’s first wife, Tessa Brennaman, who said the alleged victim told her about the incident a day later, on June 16, 2013.
Brennaman also said Kelley abused her repeatedly during their marriage, including slapping and choking her, and even “water-boarded” her. Their divorce was finalized in October 2012, according to court records.
But the released records also include Comal County detective Chris Garza’s timeline of the case that says he left three voicemails for the alleged victim between July 2013 and September 2013. The records don’t indicate whether he tried to visit her in person.
In an Oct. 7, 2013, letter, Garza told the victim that she had not returned his messages and that he needed her cooperation. “I cannot proceed without your help,” Garza wrote.
According to Garza’s timeline, the case was “inactivated pending contact from the victim.” The Comal County district attorney’s office has said no case was filed with prosecutors.
Reynolds said Friday that deputies eventually spoke to the victim in October. Garza then tried to contact Kelley, but was unsuccessful, and that the investigation “stalled,” Reynolds said.
Kelley should have been arrested the following year, Reynolds said. But the sheriff’s office did not have a case-tracking database that would have warned deputies responding to a domestic disturbance that Kelley was the subject of a sexual assault investigation. Reynolds, who took office as sheriff last year, said he is now creating such a database.
Phone numbers listed for Kelley’s parents were out of service.
The Air Force has also said it failed to report Kelley’s court-martial — and the resulting sentence of 12 months’ confinement — to the FBI, which keeps criminal history records in databases used to conduct background checks of gun buyers.
WESTERVILLE, Ohio (AP) — Two veteran officers shot and killed while responding to a 911 hang-up were true heroes because they spent their lives working for others and their community, a police chief told mourners Friday.
Hundreds of officers and deputies in blue and black uniforms from around the country crowded into a church for the officers’ funeral. Many watched the services on television in an overflow gymnasium next door.
Officers Eric Joering, 39, and Anthony Morelli, 54, were fatally shot last Saturday after entering a townhome while responding to a domestic dispute. They returned fire, wounding 30-year-old Quentin Smith.
Smith, who has been charged with aggravated murder, remains hospitalized and is expected to survive. He hasn’t had a hearing yet and it’s unclear if an attorney has been appointed.
Before the services began Friday, mourners filed past a pair of flag-draped caskets inside St. Paul Catholic Church in Westerville, a suburb of Columbus.
A uniformed officer walked Joering’s police dog in front of his casket. The officer saluted while the dog turned and sat facing the coffin for a moment.
Republican Gov. John Kasich and his wife, Karen, attended the services, sitting near the altar with other state leaders. The Kasichs live in a nearby township.
Westerville police chief Joe Morbitzer said both officers were heroes long before last weekend.
“It wasn’t this event and it wasn’t this day,” the police chief said. “It was their entire lives.”
Both men were married with children. Joering, a 16-year police veteran, had three young daughters.
His pastor, the Rev. Kyle Hammond of Adventure Church in Lewis Center, said Joering would do anything for his family, including allowing his girls to style his hair and paint his nails.
“I heard he drew the line at makeup,” Hammond said.
Morelli was a 30-year veteran with two children, including a daughter who is planning a wedding this summer.
Westerville police chaplain James Meacham said Morelli was always smiling and remembered how much he enjoyed life.
“He went to heaven and partied,” Meacham said.
After the services, a procession of police vehicles stretching for several miles slowly made their way through the city’s streets lined with people waving American flags and wearing blue ribbons in support of the officers.
One of the hundreds who waited in the cold and rain to enter the church for the viewing was Zach Youmans, 24, of Westerville, a friend of Morelli’s son, Chris.
“Whether you knew either of them or not, they still affected your life, whether you passed through Westerville or live here,” Youmans said.
Patrol cars from Louisiana, Illinois, Texas, West Virginia, Michigan and many other states filled the church parking lot.
Matthew Pfau, 27, an honor guard member with the University of Maryland-College Park police department, said the overwhelming show of support for police was the biggest he had seen.
“Law enforcement is just one big family. It’s a brotherhood, a sisterhood. There’s really no other bond like it,” Pfau said. “Situations like this are happening way too much today.”
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Former New Mexico state Sen. Phil Griego will spend 18 months behind bars for fraud, bribery and other convictions stemming from allegations that he misused his position to profit from a real estate deal, a state district court judge ruled Friday.
Judge Brett Loveless sentenced Griego to a 12-year-prison term, but waived all but 18 months.
The former prominent Democrat also was ordered to pay roughly $47,000 in fines and serve five years of supervised probation upon his release from prison, with 1,000 hours of mandated community service.
Citing the need to restore the public’s trust in New Mexico’s elected officials, prosecutors had requested that Griego spend at least 10 years in prison and pay hefty fines for his crimes.
The defense said a lengthy prison sentence would amount to a death sentence for the 69-year-old Griego, who was described as having significant health issues.
Loveless emphasized that Griego had violated the public’s confidence in an elected official and said the sentence was designed to show that the ex-senator’s actions were not acceptable.
“You had an obligation to make sure that you complied with the law and didn’t destroy that public trust,” the judge told Griego.
Loveless said the case involved a danger that “leads to people not having trust in their government, not relying on the decisions of their government — perhaps even taking matters into their own hands.”
Prosecutors accused Griego of using his elected position and acumen as a real estate broker to guide the sale of a state-owned building in downtown Santa Fe through various approvals without properly disclosing his financial interest.
At trial, Griego maintained that he did nothing wrong in earning a $50,000 commission from buyers of the property.
At Friday’s sentencing, he spoke for nearly a half hour of being drawn to public service by the examples of his mother, a pediatric nurse, and his father, who ran a neighborhood grocery store in Santa Fe and served on the city council.
“I never used the power of my office to harm anyone, your honor, never,” he said. “I have brought a stain on a precious remembered family heritage.”
Friends and family members, including a grandson adopted by Griego, asked the judge for leniency.
Griego resigned from the Legislature in 2015 following a Senate ethics investigation.
He was convicted in November on charges that could have carried a maximum sentence of nearly 18 years in prison.
Assistant Attorney General Zach Jones said the severity of the crimes was only highlighted by dozens of supportive letters to the court seeking leniency for Griego.
“These supporters, the people writing the letters, are the people most harmed by the defendant’s crimes, by his assault on the democratic process,” Jones said.
Attorney Tom Clark accused the state attorney general’s office of seeking “the complete annihilation” of his client in the name of justice.
Griego’s case marks the latest in a string of high-profile corruption scandals involving public officials in New Mexico.
In a separate case, Griego faces multiple counts of perjury and embezzlement related to campaign finance reports that prosecutors say were falsified. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges.
Griego served in the nation’s only unsalaried legislature but qualifies for a state-subsidized pension.
Friday’s court decision would claw back some pension benefits through fines, along with reimbursements Griego received for lodging and travel.
During the recent legislative session, lawmakers abandoned a more aggressive pension forfeiture law for officials convicted of corruption.
The sentence prohibits Griego from holding public office or working for the state. He was given three weeks to prepare for prison.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Outgoing Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales is denying allegations of decades-old sexual assault that have been reported to authorities by a female relative.
Gonzales in a statement this week called the allegations slanderous, saying they have been harmful to him and his family.
“I have not seen a report or even been contacted by the State Police,” said Gonzales, 51. “This is only meant to do one thing, drag me through the mud without due process.”
The former head of the state Democratic Party and Santa Fe’s first openly gay mayor, Gonzales also characterized the claims as being part of a political attack by his critics.
Gonzales, whose mayoral term ends next month, had announced earlier this week that he was ending his bid to seek the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor. He had said his heart was not in the race and that he planned to return to the private sector.
Blair Dunn, an Albuquerque attorney who represents the woman who made the allegations, said his client is cooperating with authorities but declined to comment further until state police finish an investigation.
According to a police report, the woman told authorities the alleged sexual contact began when she was 8 years old. She said several people knew about the incidents but they were never reported to law enforcement.
The allegations have been swirling for years. Gonzales acknowledged that they were raised during divorce proceedings in which he and his ex-wife feuded over custody of their two daughters. Gonzales was eventually awarded custody of the girls.
Gonzales said the courts determined the allegations were false then and “they are still false today.”
State Police Lt. Elizabeth Armijo confirmed Thursday that a woman came forward with allegations that she had been sexually assaulted from the late 1970s into the early 1980s. Armijo declined to name the alleged suspect because no charges have been filed.
State police planned to move forward with an investigation after consulting with the district attorney’s office about concerns with the statute of limitations.
A member of a prominent political family, Gonzales followed in the footsteps of his father when he was elected mayor in 2014. He has been most outspoken on immigration issues, gaining attention last year for his defiance of President Donald Trump’s executive order to revoke funding for cities that don’t fully cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
Gonzales also pushed environmental friendly policies as mayor and faced criticism for a failed effort to raise taxes on sugary beverages.
His political career started at 27, when he was elected to the first of two terms on the Santa Fe County Commission.
Gonzales went on to serve as the chair of the state Democratic Party for four years and was appointed by then-Gov. Bill Richardson to serve as a regent for New Mexico State University and New Mexico Highlands University.