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Archive 2002

Area Newspapers
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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Tuesday, July 16, 2002

Teenage car thieves apprehended after

high-speed chase, all-night search

Jennifer Galvan
Staff Writer
PECOS, Tuesday, July 16, 2002 -- Law enforcement officers captured two teen-age boys today after a local man spotted them near North Pecan Street and called police. The Midland boys' life of crime began last night when they fled from Reeves County Sheriff's Deputies in a Chevy Blazer.

The search for the two boys began when a call from Ward County was made to the Reeves County Sheriff's Department at about 9:45 p.m. yesterday in regards to $18 worth of gas being stolen in Wickett.

Lieutenant Mike Dominguez of the Reeves County Sheriff's Department said the call advised that a red Chevy Blazer was traveling westbound and headed towards Pecos.

According to Deputy Arturo Granado's report as he was traveling East on Interstate 20, he noticed the Blazer at mile marker 45 where he then turned around and stopped the vehicle at mile maker 44.

"Deputy Granado spotted the vehicle and made the stop," Lt. Dominguez said. "However, when he (Granado) started to approach the vehicle they took off."

As the vehicle fled from Granado, he then turned on his emergency lights and sirens and advised dispatch that he was in pursuit of the Blazer.

At this point, the driver managed to exit off mile maker 42 traveling at about minimum speed of 70 heading north on highway 285, Dominguez said.

As the vehicle arrived at the intersection of 285 and East 4th the Blazer turned east on 4th at a high rate of speed lost control and hit a parked car owned by Pecos Enterprise Managing Editor Jon Fulbright.

After hitting Fulbright's car, the vehicle turned north at the 300 block of South Ash Street, in which it then ran through a stop sign on 3rd and Ash, Dominguez said.

After running the stop sign, the driver then ran through a yield sign at 2nd and Ash.

According to Granado's report the vehicle approached the 100 block of Ash, the blazer lost control almost striking a moving train. As that point, the Blazer then made a sharp turn heading south almost striking a residence causing it to turn north and lose control at which point it then hit a fence before coming to a complete stop.

When the vehicle came to a complete stop, the two occupants ran.

According to Dominguez, the vehicle belonged to the driver's mother. The teenage boy had taken the keys from his mother's purse and left.

"The boys were heading to Van Horn to see a girlfriend," Lt. Dominguez said. "I spoke to the drivers parents last night. In fact they are in town right now."

Last night's search for the two boys was headed by the Reeves County Sheriff's Department with the help of the Pecos Police Department and the Ward County Sheriff's department.

According to Lt. Dominguez, the search covered an area of about six miles but was called off at about 4:30 this morning. They were about to begin a second search by helicopter when they received a call that the boys had been seen at the 100 block of North Pecan, he said.

According to Granado, the boys were spotted wondering around a shed in which they were hiding.

A neighbor who happened to be working on his roof spotted the boys and then called the police.

The two boys were apprehended and taken to Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center in Pecos.


Calling all ugly dogs

Staff Writer
PECOS, Tuesday, July 16, 2002 -- KWES-TV News West 9 will be in Pecos on Thursday afternoon sponsoring an Ugly Dog Contest and Hot Dog Eating Contest.

The television station is taking its news broadcast on the road this week across West Texas and Southeast New Mexico as part of the 10th anniversary of, "Under West Texas Skies."

Thursday the Channel 9 news at 5:00 and 6:00 p.m. will be broadcast from the West of the Pecos Museum courtyard.

News West 9 is scheduled to travel to five different communities during the week, according to Cliff Voake, with News West 9 public affairs.

"All five of this week's stops will feature free refreshments, soft drinks and water, courtesy of Coca-Cola," said Voake.

All five stops will also feature an Ugly Dog Contest and a Hot Dog-Eating Contest. Those who visit during the broadcasts will have a chance to register and win a Caribbean Cruise, he said.

"We welcome everybody," said West of the Pecos Museum Director Debbie Thomas. "We'd like to make a good impression and have a good turnout on Thursday," she said.

Thomas said she would like to see everyone in the community to go to the museum Thursday and welcome the News West 9 crew. "We want to have a big crowd," she said.

"Whether you have a great dane, a handsome hound or a pug that only a mother could love, here's a chance to show-off your special canine friend on a regional television broadcast, and perhaps take home a prize," said Voake.

There's no entry fee to be part of the fun, according to Voake. "Just bring your canine pal to the broadcast location by 5 p.m., local time," he said.

Judging will take place during the 5 p.m., broadcast of News West 9, and winners will be announced during the 6 p.m., broadcast. Prizes will be awarded, a trophy for the owner, and treats for the pet.

A Hot Dog-Eating Contest will also be a part of the fun. The contest will take place during the 6 p.m., broadcast of News West 9, winners will be announced, and trophies and ribbons will be awarded.

The news team was in Hobbs, N.M., on Monday; in Seminole today and will be in Fort Stockton on Wednesday and in Alpine on Friday.

Fake doctor caught on I-20 for speeding

Jennifer Galvan
Staff Writer
PECOS, Tuesday, July 16, 2002 -- A women on probation and posing as a doctor was arrested on Thursday, July 11, after being stopped on a traffic violation.

According to Lieutenant Mike Dominguez of the Reeves County Sheriff's Department, Rhonda Soto, a woman in her thirties from Wichita, Kansas, was stopped on Interstate 20 near mile marker 37 for speeding.

According to the statement Soto made to Lt. Dominguez, she was living in Wichita with her husband claiming to be pregnant.

She had convinced her husband of being pregnant by wearing a pillow for nine months.

Lt. Dominguez said that he believes that when her nine months were up she got nervous and traveled to Celia, Kansas. While there, she pretended to be a doctor by going to a second hand store and purchasing some light blue scrubs.

According to Dominguez, Soto had a doctor's name and the word pediatrician embroidered on the scrubs.

Soto then went to a hospital posing as a doctor and would hold conversations with other doctors.

While at St. Joseph's hospital in Celia, Soto asked for a tour of the pediatrics ward but according to her statement to Lt. Dominguez, she never had contact with any children.

After her tour at St. Joseph's hospital, Soto then decided to go home, he said.

According to her statement, Soto said that she had told her husband that her water had broken while in Celia and that she would admit herself to the hospital.

Later she then went on to tell her husband that a nurse had kidnapped her baby. She then told him that she had hired a detective from Wichita who had found her baby. The detective was to fly into Ft. Worth were Soto would then meet him to retrieve her baby, she said.

At that point, Soto just got in her car and drove to Ft. Worth and stayed there for some time before traveling to El Paso and also staying there.

According to Lt. Dominguez, when they searched Soto's car, they found baby clothing, diapers, a car seat, baby bottles and several other items.

"There are a few other things that I can't reveal," Dominguez said. "It would mess up the investigation."

When asked if Soto had actually stolen any babies, Dominguez said that at this point in time they could not prove that any babies were taken.

According to Lt. Dominguez, Soto has three other children that live with their biological father.

Soto is being held at the Reeves County Jail awaiting extradition to Kansas.

Though Soto has tried to call her husband, Dominguez said that there is no answer.

As of now Soto is being held for violation of her probation.

School board set to discuss cutting assistant principals

The elimination of administrative positions will be the topic of discussion at a special Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD board meeting scheduled for Thursday.

The group will meet at 6 p.m., in the Technology Center, 1301 S. Eddy and the public is invited to attend.

The group had discussed the elimination of assistant principals at Austin Elementary School and Crockett Middle School, but the item was tabled at the last regular board meeting. The positions are currently vacant and by not hiring an individual for the position, the district would save money, according to PBT-ISD Superintendent Don Love.

Board members will also discuss adoption of a new District Electronic, Communication and Data Acceptance Use Policy, dental insurance, GAP insurance and long term care insurance.

School board members will meet behind closed doors in closed session to deliberate the "appointment, employment, evaluation, reassignment, duties, discipline or dismissal of a public officer or employee and/or to hear a complaint or charge against an officer or employee.

The board's agenda cited the Texas Open Meetings Act Section 551.074 (a) as authorization for the closed session.

The group is then scheduled to return to open session and take action, if any, on items discussed in closed session as required by law.

The group will have a budget workshop, immediately following the special meeting.

Community Council accepting applications

PECOS, Tuesday, July 16, 2002 -- Community Council of Reeves County will begin accepting applications for school supplies for low income families beginning next Monday, July 22.

Clients must pick up applications at 700 W. Daggett Street, Suite F.

An appointment will be set up when the completed application is submitted. Deadline for applications is July 26.

Police Report

EDITOR'S NOTE: Information contained in the Police Report is obtained from reports filed by the Pecos Police Department, Reeves County Sheriff's Office, or other officers of those agencies.

The serving of warrants by an officer for outstanding fines of either traffic citations, animal control violations or other court costs are considered arrests and will be printed as such unless indicated that the fines were paid. In such instanced we will indicate payment and release.


Ester Hinojos Marquez, 42, was arrested at 10:03 p.m., on July 15 at the Del Rio Bar for public intoxication.


Julio Franco, 20, was arrested at 7:46 p.m., on July 13 at Maxey Park on a Reeves County Sheriff's Office Capias Pro Fine warrant for disorderly conduct.


Pablo Saldana, 52, was arrested at 1:31 a.m., on July 14 in the 1300 block of South Eddy Street for public intoxication.


Jaime Cazarez, 20, Noe Nunez, 21, and Jesus Franco, 21, were arrested at 2:13 a.m., on July 14 at Flying J Truckstop for disorderly conduct for fighting.


Alberto Perez, 21, was arrested at 3:39 a.m., on July 12 in the 1200 block of East Second Street on several warrants for no operator's license, motion to revoke probation and theft by checks.


Carlos Martinez, 38, was arrested at 1:18 a.m., on July 9 in the 400 block of North Elm Street for resisting arrest and assault.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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