Santa Fe judge suspended without pay amid DWI charges

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SANTA FE, N.M. — The New Mexico Supreme Court suspended a Santa Fe magistrate judge without pay as he faces charges for an alleged DWI crash in February.

The high court ruled to temporarily suspend Santa Fe Magistrate Judge Dev Atma Khalsa without pay.

In February, police say Judge Khalsa drove drunk and crashed his car on I-25 at the Saint Francis Drive exit in Santa Fe.

Officers arrived, allegedly smelled alcohol and noticed he had slurred speech. Police say Khalsa denied drinking and refused a blood test.

Officers arrested Khalsa and charged him with reckless driving and driving without a license. Afterward, Khalsa was placed on administrative leave with pay.

Last month, the judge pleaded not guilty to his charges. If Khalsa is convicted, he faces 90 days in jail, a $999 fine and one year of probation.

Khalsa was elected in November, campaigning on accountability, and issues he called priorities, like DWI.

Since January, he has heard about a dozen cases related to DWI for things like revoked licenses.

Khalsa will appear in court June 6.