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Jordan pleads no contest

to child indecency

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Staff Writer
PECOS, 1995 - Johnny Jordan, 59, of 601 S. Palm St., pleaded no contest
this morning to one count of indecency with a child.

District Judge Bob Parks accepted the plea and found Jordan guilty,
placed him on six years deferred adjudication probation, fined him $750
and ordered him to pay $274.50 court costs.

Terms of probation include 600 hours of community service and that
Jordan avoid members of the families of four children involved in
alleged sexual acts, pay for psychological counseling for all family
members and attend sex offender psychological counseling.

He is to register as a sexual offender with law enforcement agencies in
any municipality where he may live and have no unsupervised contact with
children under age 12.

Jordan was arrested on Sept. 23, 1994 and charged with one count of
aggravated sexual assault and three counts of indecency with a child.
Two days in jail are credited against his probation term.

Should he successfully complete probation, the conviction could be
erased from his record.

Hal Upchurch of Odessa represented Jordan in his court appearance this

Richard Lynn Waldon pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled
substance and was placed on three years deferred-adjudication probation
plus a $1,000 fine and $140 restitution to the Department of Public

Judge Parks appointed Scott Johnson to represent Ruben Garcia Tercero
Jr. on a charge of burglary of a building and criminal trespass. Randy
Reynolds will represent Carlos Vasquez on a burglary of a building
charge, a state jail felony.

Arevalo trial underway in child beating

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Staff Writer
RANKIN, 1995 - Testimony got underway this morning in the murder trial
of Gilbert Arevalo, a former Pecos resident charged with the beating
death of his girlfriend's baby last year.

A jury was seated Monday in 83rd District Court in Rankin, said
Assistant District Attorney Kriste Burnett.

Arevalo, 20, allegdly beat Alvaro Carrasco, the 18-month-old son of
Sandra Madrid. Carrasco died in Reeves County Hospital May 2, 1994 of
internal injuries allegedly sustained in the beating.

Madrid was convicted Dec. 1, 1994 of injury to a child by omission in
connection with the beating and is serving a life sentence in state
prison. Burnett said this morning she is not sure if Madrid will testify
in the four-day trial.

The couple and the child were living in the Upton County town of
McCamey, where officials allege the fatal beating to Carrasco occurred.
During Madrid's trial, testimony indicated she failed to inform doctors
at Reeves County Hospital of her son's injuries, saying instead the boy
was sick after swallowing cigarettes.

Defendant's sister held for assault

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Staff Writer
RANKIN, 1995 - The sister of a former Pecos man being tried in Rankin
for murder was arrested Tuesday for assault and resisting arrest, said
an Upton County deputy this morning.

Maribel Arevalo, 24, assaulted a woman leaving the courthouse at the
close of testimony Tuesday. A deputy who saw the incident arrested
Arevalo and charged her with assault causing bodily injury and resisting

She posted $2,000 bail on each count and was released.

The person assaulted was a relative or friend of Sandra Madrid, whose
18-month-old son died after allegedly being beaten by Gilbert Arevalo,
19, at their home in McCamey.

Arevalo, who also gave a Pecos address at the time of his arrest in May,
1994, is on trial for murder. Madrid was convicted Dec. 1, 1994 of
injury to a child by omission and is serving a life sentence in state

The baby, Alvaro Carrasco, died in Reeves County Hospital, where Madrid
took him for treatment and said he had swallowed cigarettes.

House creates new district court

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Staff Writer
AUSTIN, 1995 - State representatives passed a bill Thursday that would
create a new district court for Brewster, Jeff Davis, Presidio, Hudspeth
and Culberson counties.

House Bill 1598, introduced March 6 by Rep. Pete Gallego of Alpine, now
goes to the Senate, where Sen. Frank Madla of San Antonio is sponsor.

Gallego said that the five counties have a serious backlog of cases, and
it is particularly costly to the counties as prisoners remain in jails
for lack of a trial for many months.

The bill as passed by the House would create an office of district
judge. However, district attorneys elected by voters in the 83rd and
34th districts will prosecute the cases filed in those respective

Culberson, Hudspeth and El Paso counties comprise the 34th District,
while Brewster, Jeff Davis and Presidio counties are in the 83rd

If the bill passes the Senate and is approved by Gov. George Bush, it
will take effect in September. All cases pending in the affected
counties would be transferred to the new district judge.

Alex Gonzales of Fort Stockton is judge for the 83rd District. El Paso
judges serve Hudspeth and Culberson counties at present.

Power outage disrupts murder trial

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RANKIN, 1995 - A power outage in Rankin Friday delayed the murder trial
of Gilbert Arevalo, which continued today.

Arevalo, 24, is charged with the beating death of 18-month-old Alvaro
Carrasco. Scott Johnson is his defense attorney.

The baby died May 2, 1994 in Reeves County Hospital of injuries
allegedly sustained in the beating. His mother, Sandra Madrid, 18, is
serving a life prison sentence for injury to a child by omission.

Both Madrid and Arevalo are former Pecos residents who were living in
McCamey at the time of the alleged beating.

Fence out cattle or pay consequences

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Staff Writer
PECOS, 1995 - Texans who don't want range cattle on their land must
fence them out, District Judge Bob Parks ruled this morning.

Parks granted a defense motion for instructed verdict this morning in
the civil damage suit filed by Gary and Marianne Ingram against Madera
Cattle Company and John Moore.

Moore cattle breached a fence round their ranch north of Toyah and
damaged their $225,000 pistachio orchard, the Ingrams said. Only 85 of
327 trees were left after the 12 cows and four bulls stripped them of
leaves and broke some trunks just as the first commercial crop was
nearing harvest.

Ingram estimated the orchard is now worth $150,000, but said that
because of his age and the length of time required for a pistachio tree
to mature, he will not be able to replace the lost trees and realize a
profit from the popular nuts.

Defense attorney Connell Ashley said in his motion for instructed
verdict that Ingram's fence was not adequate to keep out the neighbor's
cattle, as required by the state's "eyeball statute."

That statute requires that a farmer erect a hog-proof fence five feet
high to keep livestock off his fields. Ingram testified that he had a
three-foot rabbit fence on three sides of the orchard and a four-foot
fence on the fourth side.

Fencing around the entire 126.8-acre tract is four feet high, he said.

Ingram's attorney argued that he was relying on common law that the
cattle were "breachy," - known to break through fences to get on
neighboring pasture.

Both the Ingrams and Cecil Lee testified that Moore cattle pastured on
the Daniel ranch adjoining their property often got on their land
because the Daniel pasture was in poor condition and the cattle were

But Roddy Harrison, assisting with the defense, said that all of Reeves
County is open range, where "fence-out" law applies. "That's the law in
Texas and always has been...Every county west of the Pecos River is open
range. Being a rural county, we have to go to the law."

He said the "eyeball statute," 143.001, was created by the state
legislature to define a sufficient fence.

"The fence has to be five feet tall; sufficient to turn a hog," Harrison
said. "If so, it will turn cattle and horses and everything else except

Judge Parks agreed and dismissed the jury who began hearing testimony
shortly before noon Monday.

Martinez admits sexual assault

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Staff Writer
PECOS, 1995 - Two defendants entered guilty pleas this morning in 143rd
District Court, and Judge Bob Parks sentenced one to 10 years in prison.

Margarito D. Martinez pleaded guilty to sexual assault for an incident
that occurred Dec. 4, 1994 in Balmorhea. His indictment was for
aggravated sexual assault, to which he pleaded innocent.

He was sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined $1,000. He has 174 days
credited for the time he spent in jail since his arrest.

Rodolfo Carrasco Renteria pleaded guuilty to felony driving while
intoxicated and received a four-year probated sentence and $1,000 fine.
His jail credit is 15 days.

Judge Parks appointed Randy Reynolds to represent Herman Ortega Campos.

Reynolds was absent for today's hearings because his father, Dr. Elvia
Reynolds, is in a Lubbock hospital for heart by-pass surgery.

Other cases on the docket included 11 family matters filed by the office
of attorney general, divorces, civil matters and motions to revoke
probation in criminal cases.

Task force turns up cocaine

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Staff Writer
PECOS, 1995 - Two Saragosa residents hve been charged with possession of
cocaine following a search at their home Saturday morning by the
narcotics task force operated by the Reeves County Sheriff's Department
and Pecos Police Department.

Justice of the Peace J.T. Marsh set bail at $10,000 each for Martin
Mendoza, 30, and his wife, Margarita Mendoza.

Deputy Clay McKinney said that Justice of the Peace Joel Madrid issued
the search warrant, which was served on the Mendoza residence at 6:55
a.m. Saturday.

"As a result of the search, two grams of cocaine was found in the master
bedroom and one gram in a doll's leg in Mendoza's pickup," McKinney said.

Gallego wins fight to create court

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AUSTIN, 1995 - Rep. Pete Gallego of Alpine used a last-minute
parliamentary maneuver to win approval of his bill to create the 394th
Judicial District, «MDUL»The Big Bend Sentinel«MDNM» reports in today's

Last week, the court appeared to be a dead issue when the Senate
calendar committee failed to report it out in time for floor action. But
Gallego brought it back to life.

With the signature of Gov. George Bush and approval by the U.S.
Department of Justice, the new district will become a reality on
September 1.

"We don't forsee any problems with approval by the Justice Department,
since this does not involve a single-member district," said Joe
Valenzuela, spokesman for Gallego's office.

The new district will include Presidio, Brewster, Jeff Davis, Culberson
and Hudspeth counties.

Culberson and Hudspeth counties will move from the 34th district,
leaving El Paso County.

Brewster, Jeff Davis and Presidio counties will move from the 83rd
district, leaving Pecos, Reagan and Upton counties.

Judge Alex Gonzalez of the 83rd district has said the Texas Legislature
should have waited until 1997 to consider new judicial districts after a
state-wide study is completed.

"I'm a man of principle about what's right and wrong. I felt like this
new district was wrong for the area, and I couldn't sit still," Gonzalez

But he said with a smaller district to contend with, his job will be

"I got a sweet deal out of the matter, because I'm just going to have
half of the (case) load. But, I feel sorry for the counties because I
don't think it's right for the area," he said. "There is more to being a
judge than just knowing the law. You need to have compassion, know the
people and the area."

A judge for the new district will be appointed by the governor. Brewster
County Judge Val Beard and U.S. Magistrate Judge Katherine Baker, both
of Alpine, have been named as possible nominees.

Whomever is appointed will have to seek election in 1996.

That could be a plus for the five counties in the new 394th district. As
it stands now, Fort Stockton's large population helps carry an election
in the 83rd, and the city of El Paso carries the election in the 34th.

Although new judicial district lines will be drawn, the district
attorneys' areas will remain the same.

Current 83rd District Attorney Albert Valadez will keep Presidio,
Brewster and Jeff Davis counties in the new 394th district, as well as
Pecos, Reagan and Upton counties in the 83rd district.

El Paso District Attorney Jaime Esparza will be D.A. for Culberson and
Hudspeth counties.

The passage of legislation creating a new judicial district ended years
of discussion and controversy.

Gallego's bill stirred up officials in Far West Texas who questioned the
need for a new judicial district as well as the funding source.

Gallego said a new district was needed because the case load was too
large in the 83rd.

Contrary to what some officials are claiming, Gallego said there is no
plan for sludge and radioactive waste dump entities to fund the new

Funding is set up like current judicial districts in which a state
appropriation would pay the $92,000 annual salary for the district
judge. The counties within the district would have to share the cost of
support services with Hudspeth County probably funding the majority of
the court as it is already receiving state money for the proposed
low-level radioactive waste site.

"Many false allegations were raised about this court and some said I
could never get it done," Gallego said, "but, I never said anything."

Gallego took several steps to secure the judicial district.

First, he secured an appointment on a conference committee working out
differences between house and senate versions of a bill creating about a
dozen new judicial districts throughout the state, an omnibus courts

Gallego then convinced colleagues in both houses to suspend the rules to
allow him to attach his bill for a new judicial district to the omnibus

The rules had to be suspended because the omnibus bill already had been
approved by both houses without language needed to create the new Far
West Texas district.

Gallego's creative politicking apparently was an "all or nothing"
strategy: either all new proposed districts would be approved or none
would be approved.

There was no opposition to the new court in the House or Senate.

Gallego credited others with helping create the new court, including
Sen. Frank Madla and Sen. John Montford, who represent the counties

Fuller denies Greears new divorce trial

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Staff Writer
PECOS, 1995 - Visiting Judge Larry Fuller this morning denied a motion
for new trial in the divorce decree for Ben and Betty Greear entered
Nov. 30, 1994.

Betty Greear filed the motion for new trial based on her claim that she
was defrauded and in fear for her life when she agreed to accept the
couple's assets with debts of $452,439 - including Ben's Spanish Inn's
chili relleno business and Greear Mini Storage.

Ben's Spanish Inn is closed, with payments to the Small Business
Administration six months in arrears on a $250,000 debt, Greear said.

Reeves County,, through the Pecos Industrial Foundation, also loaned the
couple $68,000, and only one payment was made on that note, she said.
She claimed she did not know at the time of the divorce that the PIF had
a first lien on the mini-storage business.

Greear testified that she feared her husband would kill her for a
$750,000 insurance policy on her life if she did not leave the courtroom
as owner of the business.

She said he had impliedly threatened her before the divorce hearing.

Odessa attorney Bill Alexander, representing Ben Greear, said that Betty
Greear had documents in her possession to show the mini-storage lien
when she signed the property settlement, and she was not defrauded.

She received everything agreed to in the settlement, he said.

Greear testified that she failed to negotiate a contract with Wal-Mart
that could have kept Ben's Spanish Inn afloat.

Scott Johnson, representing Betty Greear, said his motion for a new
trial relates to her mental state and duress she was under when she
entered into the agreement, which she didn't understand.

"She thought that this was something you were ordering, not something
she had the opportunity to negotiate" he told Judge Fuller.

Judge Fuller said that both Greears were well represented at trial, and
he believes Betty Greear knew what she was doing when she signed the

Experts testified in the trial that the business was in trouble, he
said, "but I said it was your choice in this world," Fuller said.

"The court has to certify you knew what was happening. You had great
hopes. I remember that Wal-Mart was a great, great hope for you. You
wanted the opportunity you never could have otherwise to do this.

"All of us felt this business was so over-encumbered with debt, the only
chance you had was bankruptcy and re-open to get rid of all this debt.

"I find that the agreement was free and voluntary," Fuller said in
denying the motion for new trial.

Betty Greear said after the hearing that she will consult with Johnson
to determine whether to appeal.

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Copyright 1996 Pecos Enterprise
324 S. Cedar, Box 2057, Pecos TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321