Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Friday, March 31, 2000
Odessa workers at RCDC jailed on drug charges
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Mar. 31, 2000 - Two construction workers from Odessa who were
employed on the Reeves County Detention Center expansion project were arrested
on their way to work this morning on charges of transporting drugs to sell
at the facility.
The two were arrested on Highway 17 just south of Interstate 20, following
a 7:15 a.m. traffic stop by Pecos Police and Trans-Pecos Drug Task Force
officers, according to investigator Paul Deishler. The arrest was made
less than a mile from the RCDC, where the two men were working on construction
of the new 1,000-bed addition to the prison.
"We received information that the two gentlemen were transporting narcotics
out to the prison here and selling on prison grounds," Deishler said. "They're
from Odessa and were stopped by officers Oscar Machuca and Billy Hull."
Hull said the driver gave consent to search the pickup they were in,
and Deishler said, "Once we got consent we found what was believed to be
cocaine and marijuana inside the vehicle."
The two construction employees were identified as Jhonny Chris Tarango,
29, of Odessa and Ronny Tarango, 32. They were sub-contractors employed
with M.D. Construction Company of Odessa.
Banes General Contractors award bids to sub-contractors to help at the
"This has been an ongoing investigation," said Pecos Police Investigator
Paul Deishler, who said, "Hopefully, other arrests are pending."
Machuca and Hull found about 10 grams of cocaine and two ounces of marijuana
in the Tarangos' possession during the search of the cab of the pickup,
according to Deishler.
Both were charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent
Deishler contacted the West Texas Narcotics Team in Odessa and shared
his information with them. "At this time they obtained a search warrant
and are searching Jhonny's house in Odessa," he said.
Officers in Odessa had already found a half-pound of marijuana and half
an ounce of cocaine inside the residence, according to Deishler.
"They just called me back and told me they had found more drugs and
are still there," said Deishler. "They said they will be there awhile,
because there are drugs throughout the residence."
This is just what they've found so far, according to Deishler.
Street value on the confiscated drugs had not been assessed yet.
Reeves County Detention Center Warden Rudy Franco stated that he was
aware of the ongoing investigation into the construction workers.
"We were made aware of the investigation, Andy (Gomez, Reeves County
Sheriff) had told me about it," said Franco.
"The individuals were selling the drugs to other co-workers and not
to inmates," said Franco.
Franco stated that the construction employees currently working on the
1,000-bed expansion at the prison have no contact whatsoever with the inmates.
"We have our employees carefully guarding the situation, so that they
do not have to have any contact with the inmates and they don't," said
There are at least three staff members and a fence dividing the on-going
construction at the facility and the inmates.
"The possibility of any workers on the site of coming into contact with
an inmate is very remote," said Franco. "Added security has been added
to separate them from one another."
The investigation is a combined effort with the Pecos Police Department,
Reeves County Sheriff's Department and the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force.
A two-month investigation on another case ended Thursday night with
the arrest of a Barstow resident, according to Trans Pecos Drug Task Force
Commander Gary Richards.
Pecos Police, aided by the task force, executed a search warrant in
Barstow last evening.
"We had received information that an individual in Barstow was in possession
of marijuana with intent to distribute and based on that we obtained a
search warrant, which we executed last night," said Deishler.
A quarter of a pound of marijuana was located inside the residence and
an undetermined amount of cocaine.
Louis Elliott Rico, 20, was arrested and transported to Ward County
"We were also assisted by the Ward County Sheriff's Office, Monahans
Police Department and Parks and Wildlife," said Richards.
Rico was charged with possession of marijuana over four ounces and under
five pounds and possession of cocaine under one gram.
Hospital hopes turnout good for Health Fair
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Mar. 31, 2000 - Health and preventive medicine will be objectives
Saturday at the 13th Annual Reeves County Health Fair.
The Health Fair will start at 8 a.m. and continue until 3 p.m., at Reeves
County Hospital. A free pancake breakfast for everyone will kick off events
for the health fair.
"We realize that there are other activities scheduled for Saturday,
such as the Little League kickoff, track meet, but we would still like
for the parents and children to come by the health fair, so they can take
advantage of the low tests or free screenings that will be available,"
said director of special services for Reeves County Hospital Nancy Ontiveros.
"We're very excited that we're having several new services this year
such as, the Desert Springs Hospital, which will be offering depression
screenings and eating disorders," she said.
Also new this year will be the Odessa Eye Clinic, with Dr. Rick Munoz,
who is a former Pecos native, and will be providing free cataract and glaucoma
screening. He will also be doing vision screenings for adults and children.
Aerocare of Lubbock will be bringing their helicopter, which should
be arriving at the hospital at 10 a.m.
"We would like to encourage the public to take advantage of the blood
profiles, for $20; EKG's for $7 and prostate testing for $20," said Ontiveros.
These exams are usually offered with a doctor's order and are very costly.
"And Saturday, they will be available at a reduced price with no physician's
requirement," said Ontiveros.
"It is the goal of the Reeves County Health Fair Committee to promote
good health and encourage practicing preventive medicine for the residents
of Reeves County," said Ontiveros.
Friends of Ward County will have a museum bus parked outside the facility,
which individuals can go through. "It will contain a display of the effects
of radioactive hazardous material in West Texas," said Ontiveros. The group
are among a number of area residents opposed to bringing a low-level radioactive
waste dump to a site northeast of Barstow in Western Ward County.
A special feature will be Healthy Kids Art Contest, which will be displaying
the art of elementary students and prizes will be awarded at 2 p.m.
A barbecue lunch will be offered for $4 and door prizes will be awarded
throughout the day.
Pre-registration for lab work will be available this afternoon, from
2-6 p.m., at the hospital lobby.
"Individuals can register in the morning, the day of the health fair,
if they are unable to pre-register today. `
"The Reeves County Health Fair is a great benefit to everyone and we
encourage the community to participate," said Ontiveros.
Air Force pilots get lunch on the fly
By SMOKEY BRIGGS
PECOS, Mar. 31, 2000 - An Air Force survey team of four pilots flew
into Pecos Municipal Airport yesterday and had lunch before taking off
in their rented civilian aircraft to finish up their work related to the
planned Realistic Bomber Training Initiative.
Mayor Dot Stafford and City Manager Kenneth Neal met the team at the
airport. The pilots were surveying the area around which B-1 and B-52 bombers
are scheduled to fly low-level practice runs over electronic scoring sites
to the south of Pecos.
"We found out they would be in the area when we were at Dyess Air Force
Base a couple of weeks ago," Stafford said. "I suggested they drop by Pecos
and they did."
Stafford and Neal bought the team lunch before sending them back into
the wild blue yonder.
"We need to keep a good line of communication open with Dyess (Air Force
Base). The bomber training can have a tremendous impact on us. The better
we know each other the better we will communicate, and good communications
is the first step to any good relationship," Stafford said. "Of course,
inviting them to lunch was simply the hospitable thing to do."
Dwight Williams, airspace manager for the Air Force, explained that
crews surveyed existing bomber training flight paths for new obstructions
"People build things without telling us about it," Williams said. "Our
pilots fly as low as 500 feet off the ground along these routes and if
somebody builds a 1000-foot-tall tower that we don't know about it, creates
a very dangerous situation."
The Air Force is already using the route through Reeves County for low-level
training flights, but the RBTI would result in the construction of a manned
electronic scoring site about 17 miles south of Pecos, along with several
other unmanned sites in the area. The Air Force released their Record of
Decision on Wednesday selecting the route around Pecos, and construction
of the sites was expected to cost about $5 million, and add 31 new jobs
and $1.6 million annually to the local economy.
After 22 years as an Air Force air traffic controller Williams is retired
and holds the position as air space manager as a civilian.
The other three members of the survey crew are B-1 Bomber flight officers.
"We are all weapons system officers on the B-1," Major Rick Chapman
of Gardiner, Maine explained. "We happen to also have our private pilot's
"We survey the routes in single engine civilian aircraft," Captain Doug
DiFrancesco of Phoenix, Arizona said. "Today we're using a Cessna 182 and
a Cessna 172. Usually we fly the routes at 300-400 feet at 120-140 miles
per hour. That way we get a good look at the area."
"The routes can be up to 10 miles wide. We fly in two teams of two,
one man flying the plane and the other surveying the route. With two aircraft
we can cover the route pretty effectively," Captain Karl Fischbach of Rochester,
Williams said that the team had flown about 150 miles of flight path
before lunch and would fly another 150 before the day was done.
"The flight path is about 600 miles so it is a two-day job," Williams
said. "Being met by Mayor Stafford and Mr. Neal is an unexpected treat.
We don't usually get this kind of reception and this was very nice. We
really appreciate it."
Time changes to move clocks forward Sunday
WASHINGTON (AP) - The annual ritual of moving clocks an hour ahead happens
this weekend when daylight-saving time begins.
The official changeover occurs at 2 a.m. Sunday, though most people
will likely adjust their clocks and watches before going to bed Saturday.
Those who forget to spring forward could be late for church, work or
Daylight-saving time lasts until Oct. 29.
Safety officials say this is also a good time to install fresh batteries
in smoke detectors.
Some parts of the country don't observe daylight-saving time. Those
include Arizona, Hawaii, the part of Indiana located in the Eastern time
zone, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and American Samoa.
AUSTIN (AP) - Results of the Cash 5 drawing Thursday night: Winning numbers
drawn: 7-11-23-26-27. Number matching five of five: 1. Prize per winner:
$78,951. Winning ticket sold in: Bryan. Matching four of five: 333. Prize:
AUSTIN (AP) - The winning Pick 3 numbers drawn Thursday by the Texas
Lottery, in order: 6-4-4 (six, four, four)
Miguel Matta, Jr.
Miguel Matta, Jr., 25, of Odessa, died Wednesday, March 29, 2000, in Corpus
Christi, in an automobile accident.
A rosary will be held at 7:30 p.m., Sunday, April 2, at Martinez Funeral
Services are scheduled for 10 a.m., Monday, April 3, at Santa Rosa Catholic
Church with burial in Greenwood Cemetery.
He was born Jan. 5, 1975, in Pecos, was a pipe fitter-boilermaker construction
worker and a Catholic. He was preceded in death by his father, Miguel Matta,
Survivors include his mother and stepfather, Pat and Lupe Medina of
Odessa; paternal grandmother, Juanita Matta of Pecos; maternal grandmother,
Carmen Diaz of Odessa; one brother, Gabriel Matta of Odessa; four sisters,
Christina Martinez, Tammy Medina, Jessica Medina all of Odessa and Jackie
Medina of Austin.
Martinez Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Celia McCree, 62, of Dallas, died Monday, March 27, 2000, at her residence.
Graveside services were held at 3 p.m., today at Fairview Cemetery with
Rev. Bruce Abbott officiating.
She was both Sept. 23, 1938, in Clovis, N.M., was a homemaker, helped
with the Boys Girls Club of America and a Baptist.
Survivors include her husband, Wesley H. "Buddy" McCree of Dallas; two
daughters, Marilyn Martin of Dallas, Lisa Matchett of Bloomington, Ill.,
one sister and four grandchildren.
Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
PECOS, Mar. 31, 2000 - High Thursday 79. Low this morning 56. Forecast
for tonight: Mostly cloudy. A 50 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms.
Low 45 to 50. East wind 10 to 20 mph. Saturday: Mostly cloudy and breezy
with a 40 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms. High 70 to 75. Wind
becoming northeast 15 to 25 mph and gusty. Saturday night: Cloudy with
a chance of showers or thunderstorms. Low in the 40s. Sunday: Mostly cloudy
with a chance of showers or thunderstorms. High 70 to 75.
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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Copyright 2000 by Pecos Enterprise