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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

February 4, 1999

Sewer work drains stores' customers

Staff Writer
Business I-20 could be nicknamed slow-business I-20 if installation of a new sewer line underneath the highway continues at the pace it has started out.

Holloman Construction Co. of Odessa has worked about three weeks in the block between Cedar and Ash Streets and are in the process of installing a new manhole in the alley beside La Nortena tortilla and tamale factory.

"Yes, I'm angry," said La Nortena owner-manager David Castillo this morning. "They are shutting me down. I think the process could have been a little faster."

Castillo said he has watched the crew for three weeks.

"It took a week to paint lines on the street and another week to etch the lines into the asphalt. They started digging it up Friday."

Since the hole where the new manhole will be installed blocks access to his drive-up window, Castillo said he has lost nearly all his "impulse buying" traffic.

"I feel I lost some customers because it is too much of a hassle to get here," he said.

The few that do hunt a parking space and wend their way through the maze of trucks, heavy equipment, sewer pipe and accoutrements to get to the red front door of La Nortena are mostly people who have to pick up necessities, such as masa, Castillo said.

January and February are normally slow months, he said, and the blockage is making it worse.

"I just paid my taxes, and I can't afford to be shut down," he said.

Shorter store hours have cut wage costs some, but employees are feeling the pinch.

Castillo said he has not called anyone to complain yet.

Jeannie Daniel at Dan Daniels Music and Video across the alley from La Nortena said the blockage has not stopped customers from coming in, although it is an inconvenience because it partially blocks drive-through access.

Weekends are the busy time for Dan's, and owner Ronny Daniel asked the contractor not to block the drive during the weekend. They obliged, Jeannie said.

Blocked or not, customers will figure out a way to get in "if they want something bad enough," she said.

Frido Najar, project foreman, said this morning that the badly deteriorated sewer line is difficult to deal with.

"The sewer lines are very old and leaking; it fell down and everything," he said.

Since the line must be kept open during construction, the crew was busy this morning installing a bypass so they could install the manhole "and keep on going."

Najar said that a new manhole will be installed at every alley, for a total of 12. The new line will extend from Oleander to Ash Streets. Traffic cones are set up to allow one lane of traffic in each direction around the construction site.

CCRC given emergency funds to help residents

Staff Writer
Funds have been awarded to Reeves County to help residents out with utilities, rent and food, according to Reeves County Community Council Family Services Director Bertha Meierhoff.

Meierhoff said the county has was awarded federal funds under the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board program. Reeves County will get $9,052 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the area.

"We will be providing assistance with utility bills, rent problems such as first and last months rent," said Meierhoff. Help will also be available for gas, light and water bills, but not for deposits, she added.

Funds will also be used for food, according to Meierhoff.

She said that the funds have not been released yet, but that as soon as Reeves County receives them, individuals can come and apply. "We're not sure when they'll be released," said Meierhoff.

Funds will also be allocated to Balmorhea, Saragosa and Toyah and residents can apply at the city halls in those towns.

Pecos residents can apply at the Community Council of Reeves County offices, located at 700 Daggett, Suite F, or can call 447-4913, to set up an appointment.

"Individuals have to apply for the funds and meet certain criteria," she added. Those applying need to provide proof of income for the past month and social security numbers for all those living in that home.

The selection was made by a National Board that is chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and consists of representatives from The Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Council of Jewish Federations, Catholic Charities, USA, National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. and United Way of America which will provide the administrative staff and function as fiscal agent. The Board was charged to distribute funds appropriated by Congress to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas around the country.

A local board made up of private organizations has determined how the funds awarded to Reeves County are to be distributed among the emergency food and shelter programs run by local service organizations in the area. The local board is responsible for recommending agencies to receive these funds and any additional funds available under this phase of the program.

Host of party in DWI deaths gets probation

MIDLAND (AP) A jury decided against a prison term for a man it convicted of being partly to blame for a fatal accident that occurred after a party where about 50 teen-agers were allowed unlimited access to alcohol.

The jury deliberated for two hours Wednesday before deciding on three years' probation for Billy Henkel, 45, of Midland.

Henkel and his wife, Tina, 42, had been indicted on two counts each of intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault after Esteban "Steve" Lara and Craig Noland died in a crash after leaving a party at the Henkel residence in July of 1997.

Medical tests showed that Jose DeLaO, the 16-year-old driver of the pickup the young men were riding in, had a blood alcohol content of .22, more than twice the legal limit.

DeLaO served 120 days in jail after he pleaded guilty of driving while intoxicated and is now serving five years probation.

Henkel could have been sentenced to up to 20 years in prison. His wife's trial date has not been set. State District Judge John Hyde set sentencing of Henkel for Feb. 12.

Although the jury decided Henkel's sentence, the judge sets the terms of his probation. Henkel could be sentenced to anywhere from 120 to 180 days in jail as part of that probation.

Jurors heard testimony that Henkel allowed DeLaO and about 50 other teen-agers all they wanted to drink and that Henkel even moved his vehicle so that DeLaO could get around it and leave the party.

Defense attorney Bob Garcia said he believes the testimony of Gracie Lara, mother of one of the accident victims, convinced the jury on a lenient sentence for Henkel.

Mrs. Lara told jurors she became so sick with grief after her son died that she went to the Henkels in an attempt to ease her pain. She now considers them friends.

"For me, Steve was ready to go," Mrs. Lara said. "I don't blame these people. It was wrong of them to offer drinks, but I don't blame them. They are now going through the same pain that I went through."

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 instances we will indicate payment and release.


Antonio Rodriguez, 18, was arrested at 3:11 p.m., on Jan.29, at Pecos Municipal Court, on a Capias Pro Fine warrant. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Ernest Galindo Wright, 39, was arrested at 3:20 a.m., on Jan. 30, in the 1300 block of South Cherry St., for assault under the Family Violence Act under Class C. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


A male juvenile was arrested at 3:02 p.m., on Jan. 30, at Wal-Mart, 1901 S. Cedar St., for theft. He was transported to Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center.


Dnan Ramirez, 21, was arrested at 5:51 p.m., on Jan. 30, at Wal-Mart, 1901 S. Cedar St., on a warrant for assault causing bodily injury.


Benjamin Anchondo, 18, was arrested at 9:33 p.m., on Jan. 30, at Anchor West, on DPS warrants. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Frank Matta Rivera, 27, was arrested at 2:20 a.m., on Jan. 31, in the 400 block of South Park St., for assault under the Family Violence Act. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Eric Flores, 18, was arrested at 3:07 a.m., on Jan. 31, in the 2100 block of Hackberry St., for assault under the Family Violence Act. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Marcos Luna, 21, and Jose A. Mendez, 25, were arrested at 6:46 a.m., on January 31, at the corner of Thirteenth and Cedar streets, for public intoxication. They were transported to Reeves County Jail.


Joaquin Mata, 17, was arrested at 9:23 a.m., on Jan. 31, at Reeves County Hospital, for aggravated assault under the Family Violence Act causing serious bodily injury. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Melissa K. Good, 34, was arrested at 4:14 p.m., on Jan. 31, at Wal-Mart, for theft under Class A. She was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Jodi Lynn Hernandez, 33, was arrested at 9:23 p.m., on Jan. 31, in the 300 block of East Eighth St., for evading detention after a fight and on a warrant (theft/gone off bond) out of Ector County.


Norma Avila, 32, was arrested at 3:20 p.m., on Feb. 1, at 112 N. Cedar St., on a warrant service. She was transported to Reeves County Jail.


Arnulfo Quevedo, 24, was arrested at 7:33 p.m., on Feb. 2, at Reeves County Sheriff's Office, on warrants for no driver's license and no liability insurance. He was released to the jail staff for booking.


Jorge Abrego, 28, was arrested at 11:15 p.m., on Feb. 2, at Reeves County Sheriff's Office, on warrants for speeding and no liability insurance. He was released to the jail staff for booking.


Curtis Clark Gable, 43, was arrested at 12:45 p.m., on Feb. 3, in Hockley County, on a warrant for theft over $20,000. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.

Pecos Valley Crime Stoppers

Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 in reward for information leading to the arrest and grand jury indictment of the person(s) responsible for the incident described below.

On Sept. 15, at approximately 10:25 a.m., a Reeves County Sheriff's deputy was dispatched to Orla in reference to a theft of oilfield equipment, located at the mesquite (SWD) section 30 block 56tp. Upon arrival the deputy was told that sometime between 5 p.m. on Sept. 14 and 7 a.m. on Sept. 15 the person(s) took slips for holding tubing, a rod hook and 100 gallons of diesel fuel from the pulling unit co #1.

The property taken was stamped with TBS-89a. Estimated value of stolen property was placed at $7,100.

Anyone with information on this crime or any other crime including narcotics call "Crime Stoppers" at 445-9898 and you will remain anonymous.


Mary Rogers

Mary Leona Rogers, 93, of Pecos, died Sunday, Jan. 31, 1999 at her residence.

Graveside services were held at 2 p.m., today at Fairview Cemetery in Center, Tx.

She was born June 5, 1905, in Center, was a retired music teacher and a Methodist.

Survivors include numerous friends and cousins.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


High Wednesday 78; low last night 35. Tonight, becoming cloudy and breezy. Low near 50. Southeast to south wind 15-25 mph and gusty. Friday, cloudy with a slight chance of showers in the morning. then becoming partly cloudy and breezy. High near 70. Southwest to west wind 15-25 mph and gusty. Rain chance less than 20 percent.

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Pecos Enterprise
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 1999 by Pecos Enterprise