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June 3, 1997

Convicted terrorist's life now in hands of jurors

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Associated Press Writer

DENVER (AP) June 3, 1997 - Before he became the worst terrorist in the
United States, Timothy McVeigh was a son of divorced parents, an Army
sergeant who served honorably in the Gulf War, and a misguided patriot.

Jurors will have to decide in a hearing slated to begin Wednesday
whether the life McVeigh led before he detonated a truck bomb in
Oklahoma City - killing 168 people - is a reason to spare his life now.

In making that decision, jurors may get to hear from 29-year-old McVeigh
himself, who never took the stand at the trial that ended in his
conviction Monday.

They will certainly hear from friends and relatives of those killed in
the April 19, 1995, blast, many of whom are expected to demand
retribution for the loss of loved ones.

Yet revenge is not the same as justice, say lawyers involved in death
penalty cases.

"The government will make an argument that justice requires the death of
Tim McVeigh," Denver defense lawyer David Lane said. "You're going to
see thunder, brimstone, blood and hell fire."

The challenge for McVeigh's lawyers is to convince just one person that
a prison term, not execution, would be just punishment.

"Can they hit some button on one of these jurors to cause a life
sentence?" Lane said.

Lawyers were scheduled to return to the federal courthouse today to
determine what evidence will be admitted during the penalty phase, which
is expected to take about 1½ weeks.

The verdict, reached shortly after noon after 23½ hours of deliberations
over four days, elicited both cheers and tears from bombing victims and
family members in Denver and Oklahoma City.

McVeigh sat impassively at the defense table, his hands in a
white-knuckle clasp, as U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch read "guilty"
to each of the 11 counts of murder and conspiracy he faced.

Two red-eyed jurors held tissues in their hands and appeared close to

McVeigh was escorted out by four U.S. Marshals. He shook the hands of
two of his lawyers and exchanged whispered words with one on his way

Inside the courtroom, more than two dozen people fought back tears and
many broke into sobs and embraced each other. One man thrust his fists
into the air.

"We were holding hands and praying and crying," said Katherine Alaniz,
whose father, Claude Medearis, was killed. "My mom reached into her
purse and handed me his wedding ring and, of course, I just lost it."

Bud Welch stood in downtown Oklahoma City near the site of the bombing,
where cheers erupted from more than 500 people who got news of the
verdict on televisions set up on the sidewalk.

"I thought it'd all be joy, but it isn't," Welch said. "A very dull
victory. The bottom line is my little girl isn't coming back and I have
the rest of my life to deal with that."

Sentiments from people like Welch will be presented to jurors during the
penalty phase to demonstrate the enormity of a crime that cast a
spotlight on America's militia movement and like-minded right-wing

Prosecutors may show a home video of 1-year-old Baylee Almon's first
and only birthday party. The infant became a symbol of the bombing after
a picture of her body, cradled in the arms of a firefighter, was
published in newspapers around the world.

Defense lawyers plan to call people who can talk about McVeigh's
difficult childhood in the small town of Pendleton, N.Y., his parents'
divorce, his loyalty as a friend and decorations earned as an
armored-vehicle gunner in the Persian Gulf.

His father, Bill McVeigh, is expected to take the stand, as is his
sister, Jennifer, who provided evidence against him when she talked of
his anti-government views.

James Nichols, who lived with McVeigh and whose brother is to be tried
in the bombing as well, will testify.

And both sides will look to Waco, Texas, to advance their cases.

Prosecutors accuse McVeigh of bombing the Alfred P. Murrah Federal
Building in retaliation for the FBI's fatal raid on the Branch Davidians
near Waco two years beforehand. McVeigh, they said, was a hateful man
whose twisted beliefs on government led him to murder 168 innocent

The defense concedes McVeigh was upset by Waco, and may call several
Waco experts to testify about the government's oft-criticized conduct
during the raid.

The jurors - seven men and five women - can sentence McVeigh to death by
injection, life in prison or a lesser sentence determined by the judge.
Some expressed reservations about the death penalty during the jury
selection process, but all said they could impose it if justified.

If the jury cannot unanimously agree, Matsch can impose a sentence of up
to life in prison without parole. If the jury decides McVeigh should be
executed, the judge cannot overrule it.

Prosecutor Joseph Hartzler, who has multiple sclerosis, stopped his
electric wheelchair to speak briefly to the crush of reporters following
the verdict.

"We're obviously very pleased with the results. We always had confidence
in our evidence," he said. "We're ready to move on to the next stage."

Lead defense lawyer Stephen Jones, who shook Hartzler's hand after the verdict, said, "We will be ready for the second stage."

Head Start program receives grant funds

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Staff Writer

PECOS, June 3, 1997 - Funding for a local learning program has been
awarded, but who will run it is in question.

The Head Start Division of the Reeves County Community Council in Pecos
has been awarded a $346,306 grant to continue its Head Start Program
through February 1988, U.S. Sen Phil Gramm announced.

"This is the regular grant we get every year for the Head Start
program," said community council board president Linda Clark.

The grant is utilized for everything involved in the program including
salaries and equipment, according to Clark.

"They had some individuals who came out to monitor the program here in
Pecos a couple of weeks ago and they will let us know July 1 of their
decision," said Clark.

The program has been in jeopardy since late last year, when the program
was monitored and deficiencies were found.

"This doesn't mean the program will close its doors, that there won't be
a head start program," said Clark.

What it means, however, is that the community council may no longer run
the program.

"They came out in December of last year and found some things that
weren't in compliance, but those things have since been corrected," said

After this recent assessment, the individuals who were here monitoring
the program will take their findings to their administrators in Dallas
who will then render a decision as to who will run the facility.

"They will put it out for bids and decide who will run the facility, if
they don't want the council to do it," said Clark.

Clark stated that they're hoping the council will once again get to be
in charge of the facility.

"All compliances have been met and we're hoping the council will get to
keep it," she said.

The money is already there, was issued in March to be used for the
1997-1998 school year.

"The program will not close, contrary to some beliefs, it will just be
run by another entity, if that's what the people in Dallas decide," said

Bids will be taken for the program to be taken over by another entity
within this region.

"This region is very big and they could award the bid to another entity,
but I have a real good feeling that it will be the council who gets to
run it again," Clark said.

The funding will be provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human

Through the Administration for Children and Families, the department
offers a broad range of programs to encourage full development of

As one of those programs, Head Start provides both health and academic
services to pre-school children with the goal of enhancing their ability to learn and develop during their early school years.

Two construction managers hired
for housing rehabilitation

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Staff Writer

PECOS, June 3, 1997 - Reeves County Commissioners took a step forward in
their efforts to progress with a community development housing project
by selecting not one but two construction managers for the venture.

During a special called meeting yesterday the commissioners accepted the
proposals of two Reeves County men to manage the rehabilitation of 18
homes. Arthur Granado of Pecos proposed to oversee the construction
project for $1,500 per home. Norman Roman of Balmorhea said he would
manage the rehabilitation projects for $1,095 per home.

Both proposals were accepted on the condition that the commissioners
would negotiate with the men to manage the rehabilitation projects at
the lowest possible price. The commissioners also agreed that they would
require the construction managers to inspect each rehabilitation project
on at least a weekly basis.

"On our last (community development housing) project that's what we
lacked, inspections," said Precinct Three Commissioner Herman Tarin.

Two other proposals for the construction manager position were rejected
by the commissioners. One from Creative Living Builders, Glenn R. Vance
of Monahans, for $1,475 per home and one from EnviroSafe, Gilbert
Randon of Midland for $1,500 per home.

"I think we should look at people from Reeves County," Judge Jimmy
Galindo said.

Concerns were voiced by commissioners that a construction manager living
outside the county might have trouble making enough inspections to
ensure each project was constructed according to Housing of Urban
Development (HUD) Section-8 standards.

The need to hire construction managers for the project arose last month
after a grant writer from Austin, Carlos Colina-Vargas, and construction
manager, Augustine Hidalgo, quit the project.

Apparently Vargas quit over a dispute about money owed him and Hidalgo
said he did not want to work on the project because it is surrounded
with too much controversy.

The housing development project is based on a $350,000 grant from the

If negotiations are favorable, Granado and Roman will conduct
preliminary inspections of all approved work sites, draw up
specifications and cost estimates for each work site, conduct interim
inspections of all construction activities and make final inspections of
all completed projects.

Part of the construction managers' job will also be to attend a
pre-construction conference with all homeowners, contractors and Mari
Maldonado, Reeves County Grant Administrator, prior to beginning the
work at each job site.

Each rehabilitation project is scheduled to be completed within 60 days, according to Maldonado.

Summertime means new opening hours

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The West of the Pecos Museum will now be open on Monday throughout the
summer months.

Regular hours are 9 a.m. until 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

The Athletic Swimming Pool, located at Maxey Park, will open for the
public on Thursday.

The pool was expected to open earlier, but due to unexpected
circumstances it will open a couple of days later.

Operating hours for the pool will be 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through

The Miniature Golf Course will also open on Thursday.

Hours for the course will be from 6-10 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.

Refreshments will be sold and individuals can make reservations now for
personal parties.

The North-Side Swimming Pool at the corner of Walnut and B streets will
open June 10 and will operate from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Right time, right place opens mission work

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Staff Writer

Steve Haggard's camping vacations to Big Bend National Park opened the
door for mission work along both sides of the Rio Grande.

Working with Big Bend Baptist Church in Terlingua, Haggard conducts
vacation Bible schools, delivers Christmas packages and organizes Sunday
school classes for children.

"I have been doing mission work along the border for 12 years," Haggard
said. "Back in late 1991, the work I had been doing in Mexico 200 miles
south of McAllen came to an end, and I was looking for what the Lord had
for me next.

"For a long time I had come to Big Bend on vacations because I like
camping out. I knew this little church was out here. I decided to write
to the pastor to see if he was interested in missions and told them what
I had been doing.

"The timing was just right. The church was wanting to get more involved
in mission work. My background was what they needed," Haggard said.

Eighty percent of his work is Mexican-American children whose parents
recently moved to Texas from Mexico with work permits.

"These are first-generation American citizens," he said. "They still
have close ties to Mexico. Sometimes they go back on the weekend to
visit grandparents. We usually average around 20 in Sunday school."

On Sunday afternoon, Haggard goes down the highway about 17 miles to
Lajitas for another Sunday school session. Parents of the 10-12 children
who attend work at the Lajitas tourist resort, he said.

"One of our church members lives in Lajitas. We meet in her house," he

Christmas is a special time for Haggard, who has delivered goodies to
children along the river for all 12 years of his ministry.

"I get different children's groups from churches in Texas to make
Christmas goodie bags for children in Mexico," he said. "They fill
zip-lock bags with trinkets, candies, Christian literature and other
small gifts. We receive 800-1,000 every Christmas. We travel up and down
the border and have Christmas programs for the children."

Haggard said anyone who would like to join that ministry may contact him
at the Big Bend Baptist Church, Box 529, Terlingua TX 79852.

Big Bend church members also maintain storage trailers for donated
clothing, which they sort and give to those in need. Other storage vans
hold food, furniture, household goods and lumber.

"A dentist comes one weekend a month for a free clinic," said Haggard,
who lives in half of the trailer that houses the clinic.

Haggard is one of three ministers who live on the grounds of the church
and do what they can to meet the spiritual and physical needs of people
along La Frontera, the frontier.

New telephone system, hospital board topic

Reeves County Hospital District board members will discuss a pending
lawsuit and a new telephone system for the hospital during a special
meeting Wednesday afternoon.

Board members will meet at 12:15 p.m. in executive session to discuss
Ortega vs. Reeves County Hospital, while in open session, they will
discuss and consider bids for a replacement telephone system.

Prior to the meeting, the district's strategic planning committee will
meet at 11 a.m. in the hospital classroom and will discuss the phone
system, along with renovation of clinic space at the hospital. The
purchase of lawn sprinklers and a new washing machine for the hospital laundry are also on the planning committee's agenda.


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Joe Brijalba

DEXTER, June 3, 1997 - Joe Valdo Brijalba, 59, of Dexter, died Saturday,
May 31.

Services were held this morning at Memory Lawn Memorial Park, with
Deacon John Lucero officiating.

He was born Nov. 18, 1937 in Saragosa, was a plumber for Bogle Farms and
had previously lived in Texas.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Ramon and Gilberta Merjil
Brijalba; one brother, Able Brijalba and one sister-in-law, Emma Torrez.

Dixie Stainthorpe

PECOS, June 3, 1997 - Dixie Arona Fowler Stainthorpe, 73, of Lubbock
died in Lubbock Methodist Hospital following an illness.

Services are scheduled for 10 a.m. on Wednesday, June 4 at the Church of
Christ in Crosbyton with William Eudy, minister of the Cactus Drive
Church of Christ in Levelland and Leonard Harper, minister of the
Crosbyton Church of Christ, officiating.

Burial was held in Crosbyton Cemetery.

She was born March 10, 1924, in the Big Four Community in Crosby County.
She graduated from Crosbyton High School, served with the Women's Army
Corps during World War II, stationed at Randolph Field in San Antonio.
Following an honorable discharge from the service she settled in San
Antonio. In 1973 she moved to Lubbock. She was a member of the Church of

Survivors include one son, Murrell Glen Stainthorpe, Jr. of Red Oak,
Tx.; four brothers, Gwin Dale Fowler of San Antonio, Leslie Fowler of
Orting, Wash., Allen Fowler of Crosbyton, Harley Fowler of Blue Mound;
two sisters, Jean Stahl of Denver, Colo., Margie Williamson of Pecos and one grandson.


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PECOS, June 3, 1997 - High Monday, 107, low this morning, 65. There is a
slight chance of thunderstorms in West Texas through Wednesday. The
greatest chance of any precipitation will be in the area north of the
Permian Basin. The rest of West Texas will have fair skies and warm
temperatures. Lows tonight will be in the 50s and 60s. Highs Wednesday
will be in the 80s and 90s.

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Copyright 1997 by Pecos Enterprise
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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