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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide for Reeves County, Trans-Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas

The Pecos Independent and Enterprise

June 11, 1962

Hubbs, Pouns squash bidding on Estes' stock

In a surprise move today, Barney Hubbs and Joe Pouns, former publishers of the Pecos Enterprise, squashed bidding on 92 1/2 chares of stock owned by Billie Sol Estes in the Pecos Printing Company.

Hubbs and Pouns issued a signed statement to those gathered in front of the Pecos Daily News this morning, stating their complete control of some 315 shares of capital stock of the printing company now held in escrow at the First National Bank.

Harry Moore, receiver for the crushed Estes holdings, acted as auctioneer for the Estes stock.

When several bidders refused to submit definite bids, Moore and his attorney Allen Poage set 4 p.m. today as a time to submit bids.

Moore also stated that acceptance of any bid would be in agreement with Federal Judge R.E. Thomason of El Paso.

When the prospective bidders refused to submit bids, Moore then asked for hands of those interested in buying the Estes stock. Several persons held up their hands, indicating interest in buying the stock. Among the prospective bidders were J. Robert Scott and Jim Pattee; Alan Propp of the Pecos INdependent; Dorrance Roderick, poublisher of the El Paso Times; F.O. Maston of Sudan and Buck Miller, a local rancher.

The statement submitted by Hubbs and Pouns, in part, reads:

"We respectfully call to your attention that we have exercised our rights under our agreement with Billie Wol Estes and have caused the voting rights of 315 shares of such stock to be transferred to the First National Bank to be voted in accordance with our instructions until such time as the obligations of Billie Sol Estes owing tous have been fully satisfied.

"We are further entitled to have the additional 92 1/2 shares now held by the Receiver transferred to the bank to be voted in like manner." (Which means that Hubbs and Pouns could have the 92 1/2 share up for bid now put in escrow at the First National Bank even after it was purchased by a prospective bidder.)

The statement continues: "The notes owing to us are payable in quarterly instllments over the period of the next four years. They are not `on or before' notes and in view of the interest reate, it is not our present intention to accept any prepayments of any instllments under said notes."

'The statement also says that those persons who may purchase the interest of Estes' stock would be required (1) to continue to cause Pecos Printing Co. to operate its business, (2) maintain its corporate freanchises, (3) cause the corporation to pay all of its obligations, (4) furnish Hubbs and Pouns current financial material, (5) not to permit the corporation to be merged or consolidated with any other corporation or to sell any substantial portion of its assets, (6) deliver to the First National Bank of Pecos any additional shares of stock in the copany, subject to the escrow agreement, which they might acquire, and (7) not to increase the capital stock of the corporation without pledging the new stock to the payment of our notes."

Moore said the corporation is indebted to Estes for approximately $199,000.


Originally it was the intention of Trans-Pecos Industries, Inc., to submit a bid to the receiver for the 92 1/2 shares of capital stock held by Billie Sol Estes and the voting rights of the 315 shares of said stock owned by Billie Sol Estes which is pledged as collateral against a note due Barney Hubbs and Joe Pounds.

However, in view of the interference and complicated maneuver at the time of the sale, Trans-Pecos Industries, Inc., will not submit a bid on the above mentioned stock.

Grand jury calls Estes to testify

Billie Sol Estes has been subpoenaed to appear Wednesday before the Robertson County grand jury in Franklin.

Reeves County Sheriff A.B. Nail was to have personally delivered the subpoena to Estes today. Neither Estes nor Nail were available for comment at noon today.

The jury is looking into the year-old death of Harry Marshall, chief of production of the ASC committee, attempting to decide whether Marshall committed suicide as originally ruled or was murdered.

District Attorney Bryan Russ told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Friday that Estes is to appear before the jury at 10 a.m. Wednesday. He also stated that an appearance by Estes will be essential to the grand jury.

Marshall, who was believed to have been investigating cotton allotments of Estes, was shot five times, sustained a blow to the head, and inhaled a near fatal dose of carbon monoxide.

Pecos Chatter

By Marj Carpenter

One local merchant left town this week with a sign on his car, "We're from Pecos. Please don't ask. Yes, we know him." While still another merchant here told the Independent this week that he and a Midland man were in Arkansas recently and while talking to an Arkansas native, he remarked, "Where's Midland -- east or west of Pecos?" This didn't really go over so big with the Midland citizen.

Although briefcases used to be such a rare item in Pecos that they were something to be noticed and remembered, nowadays every third man on the street carries one. It seems that the battered brief case carried here ten years ago hatched out a bunch of new and shiny ones.

June 14, 1962

Chemical firm head denies rash charges

The head of Commercial Solvents Corp. of New York Wednesday denied charges that he suggested setting up Billie Sol Estes in a foreign country if things here got too hot for Estes.

The charges were made by Frank Cain, attorney for Pacific Finance Co., one of Estes' many creditors, were directed at Maynard C. Wheeler, president of the New York chemical firm.

Estes is in debt to Commercial Solvents for an estimated $5.7 million for large shipments of anhydrous ammonia tanks and fertilizer used by cotton and grain farmers.

Wheeler said the charges were "false and defamatory."

During a Dallas court of inquiry April 22, the Associated Press quotes Cain testifying that Wheeler said:

"If Billie Sol Estes gets too involved, we can always use him as a consultant in Switzerland."

Cain then said that Estes spoke up saying, "Well, I think Brazil will be better."

Whether Estes is to flee to Switzerland or Brazil remains unanswered--but he is scheduled to flee to El Paso to meet for a second time with his creditors at 10 a.m. Friday.

June 18, 1962

Estes meets creditors in Dallas

to stop bankruptcy action

Billie Sol Estes, financial wizard, is scheduled to meet with his seven-man creditors' committee in Dallas Tuesday to try to stop involuntary bankruptcy proceedings on his vast holdings now under receivership.

The committee last week refused a plan submitted by Estes to pay off all his debts and have excess to be paid into a trust fund for the 4-H Club farm youth program.

During a closed meeting of the credtiors' committee Friday Estes attorney John Cofer hinted that Estes may have access to some cash to pay the debts he owes.

Harry Moore, receiver for the crushed empire, today is scheduled to fly from El Paso to Dallas for the Tuesday meeting.

If Estes is declared bankrupt, some creditors with unsecured notes estimate they would receive about five cents on the dollar.

A 50-page report on Estes' assets and liabilities show that the Pecos man owes $38,387,935.87, while his assets total $20,793,155.95, leaving debts amounting to $17,594,779.92.

The primary source of Estes' income is being shut off. The Department of Agriculture said that all grain will be removed from the Estes elevators. Some 4,500,000 bushels of grain have been removed to date. The department anticipates it will take 18 months to empty the elevators.

During the creditors' meeting last Friday, Estes asked that he be allowed to keep his home here. He said the payments are $177 a month which his brother, John, a dentist in Abilene, is paying. He also said he owes the Baptist Foundation of Texas $5,985.85 for the land on which the house was built.

News was received at the Independent today that the Fort Stockton John Deere Implement co. was sold to W.B. Smith, an oil operator in Odessa.

Harry Moore, Estes' receiver, was not available for comment today and the sale price is not yet known.

A statement of Assets and Liabilities of the Estes holdings reveal that the company has assets of $264,674.14 and liabilities of $86,537.66.

Suit to be filed against printing co.

Plans were laid Thursday by Trans-Pecos Industries Inc., a corporation which publishes the Pecos Independent, to file antitrust action against Pecos Printing Co. Application was filed with Judge J.H. Starley in 143rd District Court.

The petitioner, Trans-Pecos Industries, Inc., contends that the defendants conspired together and with Billie Sol Estes in such a manner as to create a combination of capital, skill and acts in order to reduce the price of newspaper advertising in Pecos, to effect the elimination of competition.

The application further states that the petitioner, as plaintiff, will further demand that the defendants be ordered to pay plaintiff $40,000 as damages sustained.

Proposed defendants in the suit are Pecos Printing Co., A.B. Foster, Preston Hawks, F.O. Maston and Guy Williams.

ASC fires Mattox

W.P. (Bill) Mattox, accused of accepting a free airplane ride to Washington, D.C. from Billie Sol Estes, has been fired by the county Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Committee, the Dallas Morning News said in a Sunday story.

The News said Mattox, who had been elected to the committee by Reeves County farmers for about seven years, appealed the suspension. He was granted a hearing by the Texas ASC Committee.

Mattox has served as chairman, vice-chairman and member of the group which helps administer federal farm programs in the county. Technically, the committee hires the county ASC office manager and approves various transactions between farmers and the government involving crops under acreage controls and price supports.

The News also stated that Mattox has two more appeal routes he can take if he chooses to fight the action. He can appeal again to the state ASC committee or he can bypass them and appeal directly to Washington.

Mattox has denied assisting Estes in getting eminent domain cotton allotments moved to Reeves County.

Mattox was unavailable for comment at noon today. Local ASC officials also were not available.

June 21, 1962

ASCS enployees suspended

Mattox gets official notice

Two Agricultural Stabilization Conservation Service employees here were suspended from duty for accepting $50 Christmas gift certificates from Billie Sol Estes, financial wizard now under federal indictment for fraud.

Suspended were Rufus Atkinson, Reeves County manager of ASCS, and his performance supervisor, A.J. Weimer.

Atkinson said the certificates were presented them in 1960.

He said he and Weimer were contacted personally by ASCS officials Tuesday and notified of the suspension, but did not expect official action until sometime today. They are to receive letters denoting official suspension.

Atkinson had been with the ASCS office here since 1955. Weimer had been here since 1954. They make three ASCS officials that have been suspended since the Estes scandal.

Weimer said they would have the opportunity to appeal the action.

W.P. (Bill) Mattox, former vice chairman of the county ASCS committee, was the first person suspended. Monday, he was officially removed from his federal post for accepting an expense-paid trip to Washington from Estes.

Lewis David, executive director of the ASCS, said in a statement:

"In accordance with official procedure, Mattox has the right of appeal to the state ASCS committee concerning his removal from office.

"He may also appeal to the deputy administrator, state, and county operations, ASCS, Washington. If he chooses, he may bypass the state committee appeal and go directlry to the deputy administrator of the ASCS."

Atkinson and Weimer will probably have the same avenues of appeal.

Grain payment release asked by Moore

Harry Moore, Billie Sol Estes' receiver, and his attorney met with officials of Commodity Credit Corp. this week in effort to negotiate a release of at least a portion of more than $1 million in "earned rentals" due Estes for grain storage on the Plains.

Moore said no immediate agreement was reached. He said money was needed for continued operation of Estes' grain elevators, and that he asked Commodtiy Credit Corp. officials for $75,000 monthly. Approximately $100,000 monthly is needed for the elevators' operation.

"The plan for releasing the money is submitted," said Moore. "Now all we can do is sit back and wait for their answer."

The elevators are at 15 locations in the Panhandle and Plains. Their continued operation would assure an annual income of $4 to $5 million yearly.

The elevators have a capacity of 61 to 62 million bushels. They held about 35 million bushels of government-insured grain when the receiver took over. By order of the Department of Agriculture, some 5 million bushels have been removed.

Motion denied to stop probe

Billie Sol Estes' lawyers Wednesday asked U.S. District Judge R.E. Thomason in El Paso to dismiss the federal grand jury from continuing the probe into the Estes floundering financial empire.

Judge Thomason denied the motion.

Estes's attorney, John Cofer of Austin, said the jury should be dismissed because of bias and prejudice engendered by newspapers, magazines and television.

In another motion denied by Thomason, Cofer asked for permission to privately interrogate each of the 23 grand jurors to determine bias and prejudice attitudes.

A third request submitted by Cofer was that instructions be submitted to the jury advising them to consider only sworn testimony and evidence.

The instruction would have warned jurors against considering any newspaper report or magazine article concerning the case.

Thomason denied this motion also, but he ruled that the instructions could be presented as an ordinary exhibit.

Cofer's charges came after the grand jury reconvened its probe into the Estes dealings.

The Estes attorneys alleged that Estes has been persecuted, prosecuted and convicted by newspapers, magazines and even President Kennedy himself.

Cofer said that President Kennedy, in news conferences, "has brought condemnation down" upon Estes and his co-defendants.

He said the President inferred a belief in the guilt of a person before he was convicted.

Judge Thomason did not comment in denying the motions. In each instance he said: "The application and motion of the defendant is overruled."

Estes appeared personally in the court for the hearing. But neither he nor any other witness was called to the stand.

On the other side of the nation, a House subcommittee investigating the Estes case postponed its hearings until next Tuesday.

James A. McConnell, former head of surplus grain operations under the Eisenhower administration, who resigned to become a director and consultant of Commercial Solvents Corp., New York, was to have been a witness quizzed by the committee.

June 25, 1962

Estes lawyer wants speedy trial

Plans were made today by attorneys of Billie Sol Estes for a speedy trial here on eight separate accounts levled against Estes by the Reeves County Grand Jury last April 25.

Estes' attorney, John Cofer of Austin, said, "We do not want a continuance or to postpoine this trial until a later date in the Fall. We only want a fair and speedy trial," he added.

Cofer also asked District Judge J.H. Starley for permission to examine each prospective juror privately and separately from one another to determine bias and prejudiced opinions."

Judge Starley overruled Cofer's motion.

Last week, the attorney asked for permission to examine each member of the El Paso Grand Jury in the same manner. That motion was also denied.

Cofer said he felt private interrogration of each prospective juror was his defendant's constitutional right. He indicated that the public had already convicted Estes from the wide publicity of newspaper, magazines, radio and television.

The Estes attorney said: "This is the first time in history that a President of the United States indicated the guilt of someone that had been charged or indicted."

"Attitudes and statements from the U.S. Attorney General, the Texas Attorney General, Congressmen, and the newspapers make it difficult to foresee that my defendant will receive a fair trial," asserted Cofer.

Judge Starley assured Cofer that it was the tradition and practice of his court that each defendant on trial will receive a fair and impartial hearing.

After denying Cofer's motion, Starley said the 47 prospective jurors would be examined individually but in a group. Examination got underway at 1:30 p.m. today.

Cofer blasted Texas Atty. Gen. Will Wilson's court of inquiry conducted here Saturday as a front to increase bias and prejudice opinions before the Estes trial was to come up.

There were 21 criminal cases on the docket for the trial in the 143rd Judicial District court here, but most of them were put off until Friday. Estes' case was number 12 down the list.

The Reeves County Grand Jury charges filed on Estes grew out of anhydrous ammonia tank transaactions. A $22,500 bond was posted for Estes after the charges were filed.

The indictments show felony theft of more than $50, however, instruments attached to the charges show a total of $828,577 to be involved.

The amounts involved are: W.J. Worsham, $76,464; L.G. Worsham, $104,969; Alan C. Hoefs, $49,608, $39,204, $309,619; Thomas Bell, $162,144; Travis Lattner Jr., $55,211.60, and Jack Bradley, $31,370.40.
R.B. McGowen Jr. is the district attorney who is to prosecute.

Texas attorney general opens new area

Texas Attorney General Will Wiulson could have opened up a completely new field of investigation in the Billie Sol Estes affairs when he quizzed a Pecos physician on "housing deals" reportedly managed by Estes.

Testifying at a court of inquiry here Saturday, Dr. Harold Lindley said Estes had once told him that a housing project in Louisiana had been "processed" through the Federal Housing Administration.

Earlier, Dr. Lindley said the houses or "block" apartments he and Estes bought "couldn't have met with FHA insurance specifications." Lindley said he and Estes formed a partnership called United Salvage Co. in 1953.

He said he was the financial backer in the projects and Estes was the manager. Testimony revealed approximately 13 housing projects at different points across the nation.

"At first the project was profitable," said Lindley. "We paid approximately $200 for each unit. Later when competition set in, we paid about $800 for each unit and started losing money.."

Another witness during the five-house session was A.B. Foster, former general manager of the Billie Sol Estes Enterprises.

Under intense questioning from Wilson, Foster invoked the "I don't recall" clause more than 100 times. Wilson pressed Foster about "silent partners" in any of the Estes busindesses. Each time, however, Foster returned with "I don't know, I never knew of any."

Another issue put Foster was an Estes attempt to secure a $12 million loan from Jimmy Hoffa, head of the widely publicized Teamster's Union. Immediately Foster said he didn't recall such attempt.

Wilson continued pondering on the loan question until Foster said, "I heard some investigators talking about it."

The Texas legal chief asked Foster about a $400,000 check that was deposited to Estes Bros. account in March of this year.

"Weren't you hard pressed for cash at that time?" asked Wilson. "Didn't the $400,000 put corpuscles into your blood stream?"

Foster's answer: "I don't recall. I would want to check the records."

Wilson dug at how many oil leases Estes had, about the housing projects, about agricultural and political officials Estes knew, about a $1,500 campaign contribution to Congressman J.T. Rutherford. Each time Foster said he didn't know or couldn't recall.

Foster was asked whether he had ever talked cotton allotments or grain storage with Dr. James Ralph and Emory Jacobs, ousted agricultural officials; Jerry Holleman, former assistant secretary of labor, and Rutherford. Wilson received a "no" to each question.

The first of nine witnesses quizzed by Wilson and his aides was Harold Elder, cashier at the Pecos First National Bank.

Elder testified that two days before Estes' arrest on March 29, Bobby Frank Estes had cashed two of Estes' checks amounting to $75,000. Bobby also cashed a $5,000 check on his personal account.

W.P. (Bill) Mattox, recently removed as vice chairman of the Reeves County ASCS Committee, said he made a trip to Washington in January of this year to discuss the bracero labor problem with Jerry Holleman. Mattox asserted that he had nothing to do with discussions on cotton allotments. He said Estes and John Dennison, Billie Sol's attorney, accompanied him on the trip.

He said Estes and Dennison had an appointment with Ralph to discuss cotton allotments.

I was invied to attend the meeting," said Mattox, "but I refused to go."

Another witness, Mrs. Alice Godwin, former bookkeeper and secretary for Estes, testified that the Walter E. Heller & Co., Chicago, Ill., knew of the bogus tank transactions.

She said Coleman Wade of Altus, Okla., spoke of the Heller company knowing of the transactions about 6 months ago.

She testified that on different occasions, people would sign blank credit forms and chattel mortgages that were filed and filled in later.

When asked by the attorney general, another witness, J.F. Pattee, Pecos accountant, said, "approximately 18 months to 2 years ago I was approached by Estes who asked me how to get money into a Switzerland bank. I told him that I didn't know. He said that if I ever found out to let him know."

Assistant Atty. Gen. Richard A. Wells testified that he examined the files of the Statler-Hilton Hotel in Dallas and found that Estes checked in on March 26 and checked out March 28, with a bill of $200.80 including numberous telephone calls. Among the calls was one to Vice President Lyndon Johnson's office.

He also called Cliff Carter in Arlington, Va., and talked for six minutes. Carter is an administrative assistant to the vice president.

William Poole, another aide to the legal chief, was called to the stand to cite information he received from the records of the West Texas Communications Corp. here.

Poole said Bill Morris a former agriculture official in Washington who was fired, received 44 calls in the last two years. Sen. Ralph Yarborough received 37 calls from Estes.

When he had concluded the testimonies, Wilson asked Reeves County Judge F. H. Ryan to recess the inquiry until a later date when he might want it reconvened.

Carter follows orders from Henry Marshall

Henry Carter, field manager of the Agriculture Stabilization Conservation Service here, testified in a court of inquiry conducted by Texas attorney general Will Wilson here Saturday that he was following orders of deceased Agriculture official Henry Marshall when he approved transferring cotton allotments from out of state.

Carter said Marshall called a meeting in Fort Stockton in January of last year to discuss the allotments. He explained that a memo had been handed down earlier stating that "lease back arragnements should be turned down."

However, according to Carter's testimony, Marshall said the transfers should be approved if the forms were filled out properly.

Carter said he received a telephone call from Marshall in April or May of last year. "He just didn't sound the same," said Carter. "It sounded like he was sobbing."

Carter said he didn't understand Marshall's ruling at the Fort Stockton meeting, "but I didn't have any reason to doubt it," added Carter.


Regulation without conscience

It is fairly well conceded that the Estes affair was commonly known in and around Pecos prior to The Independent publishing its first article on Febrary 12, of this year.

If this is the case, and many have stated publicly and to the press that they knew of the peculiar financial manipulations going on, why wasn't the matter brought before the Reeves County grand jury and settled prior to the federal law enforcement agencies moving into Pecos like a "swarm of bees?"

The entire matter could have been handled locally but apparently those in a position to do someting choose apathy.

Most of us do not choose to delve into the whys of such questions because each individual here knows in his own mind why he personally did not do something---let's leave it personal.

Since the matter was not handled locally, Pecos is faced with total scrutiny by outsiders -- outsiders who have their instructions. Instructions which say in the most part, we are not interested in the personal aspect of the matter, we are only interested in punishing those who have violated laws or regulations and these laws and regulations are without personality. That is exactly how cold and heartless the situation has become.

In the past few weeks, three ASC employees or officials have been suspended for violation of Part 4, Paragraph 218 and 219 of the "County ASC Office Operations Handbook.":A copy of this volume is kept at all ASC offices, including the Pecos office. These paragraphs pertain to the acceptance of gifts or gratuities by ASC officials and employees.

Who is competent to say that the giver actually influenced the person receiving the gift? Only one person can answer that question -- the person who received the gift.

Rules, regulations and laws seldom state exceptions. They are adopted for one purpose -- to prevent the misuse of power by those who are in a position to be bought.

These rules do not consider personalities, but there are "courts of recourse" to which Mr. Rufus Atkinson, Mr. A.J. Weimer and Mr. Bill Mattox can appeal their dismissal.
These include "the state ASCS committee, and the deputy administrator, state and county operations, ASCS, Washington.

The success of such appeals are beyond the realm of prediction. Yet living in a free country such as ours, we are within our rights when we DEMAND fair, impartial, non-political and personal consideration of each and every such case.


By Paul Harvey

Mary Jones, secretary, was dragged screaming from her office in the Department of Agriculture in Washington. She was hauled off to a mental institution. For 12 days she was locked up before psychiatrists found her sane.

Congressman Bob Dole of Kansas wants to know if this means the Kennedy brothers can lock up anybody they don't like.

He implies the Administration is trying to hush up the Billie Sol Estes scandal.

Senator John Williams of Delaware says he's sure of it. That she was "railroaded to a metal institution because she knew too much."

She knew much. Miss Jones' boss, Mr. Battle Hales, offered to "prove that the Department of Agriculture gave Billie Sol favored treatment."

But they locked Mr. Hales out of his own office, refused him access to his own files. Presumably those files contained his "proof."

Subsequently a counsel on the House committee which is probing the scandal was fired. His charges that Lyndon Johnson and Sam Rayburn were involved with Billie Sol were scarcely heard. And he, fired, is thus silenced.

Perhaps the greatest tragedy which results from a public scandal does not involve the principals; it involves the innocent people in the middle who get shot up, shot down, shut up, shut out, "clouted" from both directions.

Mary Jones has been pleading with Agriculture Secretary Freeman to compensate her for the expense of proving her sanity.

She asks that her case be expunged from court records, so she can seek other work without the stigma which many infer from her confinement.

She asked Secretary Freeman to act "as a member of the American Civil Liberties Union." Had not her "civil liberties" been violated?

Freeman is conspicuously sensitive about his affiliation with the ACLU.

The Agriculture Department's only reply has been a blistering, sarcastic attack on Congressman Bob Dole, to whom she had sent a copy of her letter to Secretary Freeman. He had made the letter public.

"If persons outside the Department see fit to comment on Miss Jones' illness, the responsibility for violating her privacy is entirely theirs," the Department of Agriculture statement said.

"This applies to Congressman Dole of Kansas..."

This letter on Department of Agriculture stationery, referring again to her "illness," is evidence that Secretary Freeman does not intend to help Mary Jones clear her name.

Robert Manuel is fired. Henry Marshall is dead. Innocent creditors are bankrupt. And Mary Jones has lost more than any of them.

How many more defenseless human pawns may be cauhgt in the crossfire between Billie Sol and the buck-passers?

How many more...

Copyright 1962, General Features Corp.

June 26, 1962

Venue change asked in Estes' theft trial

John Cofer, Austin attorney for Billie Sol Estes, surprised District Judge J.H. Starley's court Wednesday for a second time when he asked for a continuance and change of venue in Estes' trial for theft.

Earlier Cofer had asked Judge Starley for a "speedy and fair trial."

The trial will probably be moved to Tyler, where District Judge Otis T. Dunagan will hear the proceedings. Starley said he would issue an official order moving the trial on July 23.

The Estes attorney's motion came after two days of futile attempts to qualify jurors. The attorneys for Estes, Cofer and his son, Hume, and John Dennison of Pecos, said they felt it was impossible to obtain a "fair and impartial jury in Reeves County."

Estes is to be tried on one of eight counts of felony theft over $50 that were levied on him April 25 by the Reeves County Grand Jury. The first case will be with Thomas A. Bell, a Reeves County farmer, who claims Estes defrauded him of more than $162,000 in the alleged anhydrous ammonia fertilizer tank deals.

R.B. McGowen, district attorney, was to have prosecuted the case here. No changes in the prosecution has been made nor anticipated. However, Frank Maloney, Austin, former Texas assistant attorney general, was sent to Pecos to assist McGowen in representing the state.

Judge Starley ruled that the Austin lawyer would be barred from the courtroom because of possible disturbances. But Starley did agree that Maloney could assist McGowen in legal research and work behind the scenes.

McGowen did not oppose Cofer's motion for a continuance. McGowen told the court that the case might be reversed if the motion were denied because the defense's first request for a continuance in customarily granted in Texas courts.

Cofer said the reason Estes couldn't get a "fair and impartial" trial here was because of the wide publicity the defendant has received. In filing his motion for a change of venue, he produced five thick scrapbooks of newspaper clippings.

Newspapers across nation gather at Estes trial

By Marj Carpenter

Pecos citizens, who had become used to having newsmen in the city during the past two months, watched a new deluge arrive Monday and early Tuesday as the first Estes trial came up on the 143rd district court docket here.

Representatives from most of the big state dailies, as well as at least two Eastern papers arrived on the scene. Cameramen from national television facilities and several Texas stations arrived to camp around the courthouse after all picture taking was banned in the courthouse itself by Sheriff A.B. Nail.

Among the newspapers represented in the city this week were The Dallas Morning News, The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, The Houston Chronicle, The San Angelo Standard-Times, The Amarillo Globe-Times, The Odessa American, The Dallas Times-Herald, and two Eastern papers, The New York Herald-Tribune and the New York Times.

Both reporters and photographers from both Associated Press and United Press International were on the scene and set up their telephone equipment in Pecos during the trial.

Bill Raley operated the UPI wire-photo transmitting machine, and Tom Powers operated the AP transmitter.

Over the weekend at the Will Wilson court of inquiry, additional reporters were on the scene from the Wall Street Journal, the Nashville Tennessean, the Washington Daily News, and the Washington Star.

One cofrfee shop waitress remarked here yesterday, "I'll say one thing for this bunch of newsmen--they are a polite and friendly bunch and I've enjoyed having them around." One other Pecos citizen expressed amazement that the reporters seemed to get along with each other so well, as he had thought that all reporters fought fiercely among themselves.

This can best be explained by stating that newspapers, like the individuals who work for them, each have a personality of their own. Newspaper-conscious Pecos readers have certainly learned this fact durng the past year.

Among all "first-rate" newspapers, whether they be big or small, there is not enmity; but a friendly rivalry. This is conducted between all reporters from papers who maintain a high standard of ethics.

They will share and assist each other in getting basic facts on a big story and then fight like tigers to come up with a different slant on the story, or a new lead.

Among the reporters in the city during the past week have been many names that are familiar to West Texas readers and some that are well known in the East.

These include Jimmy Banks, Dallas morning News; Harley Pershing, Fort Worth Star-Telegram; Oscar Griffin, Houstin Chronicle; Ross McSwain, San Angelo Standard-Times; Clyde Walter, Amarillo Globe-Times; John Sliney, The Odessa American; Ben Stephens, Dallas Times-Herald;

Nat Caldwell, Nashville Tennessean; Ray Holbrook and Finus Mothershead of the Associated Press; Terry Young of United Press International; Carl Holland, Washington Star; Clyde Farnsworth, New york Times; Carl Mazo, New York Herald-Tribune; George Gravley of the Wall Street Journal, and others.

This list doesn't include any of the many photographers that have been in Pecos during the past weeks, including photographers from both AP and UPI news serivces, NBC, CBS, and many individual TV stations.

Also last month, the deluge included reporters from Saturday Evening Post, Life, Time, Newsweek; U.S. News and World Report and Fortune.

One Reeves County farmer said Tuesday that he was kidding a reporter about there being so many of them here and got this answer: "Well, the man wanted publicity badly enough to buy a paper--now he's getting it."

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