SUNLAND PARK, N.M. (AP) — A special meeting of city councilors in the troubled border town of Sunland Park over their mayoral position was postponed Thursday after a crowd too large for City Hall showed up to watch.
More than 100 people wanted to attend Thursday's meeting in a council room that can hold only 50.
City police officers said the overcrowding would be a safety issue. The meeting couldn't be moved outside because a public address system wasn't available, according to Mayor Pro-Tem Isabel Santos.
"We don't have a P.A. other than the one installed at City Hall," she said.
The special meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday night at Riverside Elementary School in Sunland Park.
The council could choose to hold a new election, keep the old mayor or appoint a new mayor.
Former Mayor Pro Tem Daniel Salinas won the office in March, but was barred from taking office under the terms of his release from jail. He was charged before the election with trying to force his opponent from the race with a secretly recorded video of him getting a topless lap dance.
Since then, Salinas has been arrested twice more. He now faces some two dozen felonies on allegations ranging from extortion to illegal kickbacks and padding expense reports to cover partying and hookers at a conference in Mexico.
Salinas, 28, is accused of trying to smear Gerardo Hernandez, a fellow candidate for mayor, by secretly videotaping him getting a lap dance from a topless woman.
Salinas has pleaded not guilty to 18 charges and been ordered held on a $250,000 cash bond for his third criminal case in two months.
Santos earlier predicted that the council will pick Hernandez, who received the second-most votes in the election. Hernandez said he was more than willing to be appointed.
Federal, state, and local officials are in the midst of a widespread probe of Sunland Park involving voter fraud and financial dealings. Sunland Parks is the subject of a state audit as officials try to determine whether the state should take the unprecedented step of overseeing its financial management.
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New Mexico is located in the southwestern region of the U.S. Inhabited by Native American populations for many centuries, New Mexico has also been part of Imperial Spain, part of Mexico, and a U.S. territory.