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Wednesday, September 1, 1999

Tougher DWI law takes effect today

Staff Writer

PECOS, Sept. 1, 1999 -- It takes less alcohol now to make a person too drunk to drive legally, but it can cost more in the long run if he drinks and drives anyway.

Among the laws going into effect today is one making it illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. Authorities began enforcing the law at midnight.

The law means a 170-pound man could consume one less drink an hour - four instead of five - before being considered drunk. For a 137-pound woman, it's three instead of four drinks in an hour.

If that man opts for the five drinks, gets under the wheel of his pickup and has a traffic accident on the highway, he can be billed for the cost to investigate the accident.

Cindy Jones, administrative technician for the Texas Department of Public Safety, this morning was working on billing five drivers involved in DWI accidents within the four-county area reporting to the Pecos Highway Patrol sergeant.

"They can be charged reasonable expense, not to exceed $1,000 for a particular incident," Jones said.

The charge is based on the time troopers spend investigating the accident and writing reports, plus mileage for each Highway Patrol unit that responds.

Charges can range as high as $26.63 per hour for a captain's time down to $11.54 per hour for a trooper trainee.

Jones said that an accident 9.9 miles north of Pecos cost the driver $132 for three hours of the troopers' time and 25 miles on their units.

Others in the stack of five cases averaged $70 each.

Reimbursement is made through the state probation office after the defendant is convicted of DWI and the charge is made a part of the court judgment.

"When we send in a report, we also submit a bill for responding to the accident," Jones said.

It is up to the county and district attorneys to include the restitution in the proposed judgment submitted to the judge who tries the DWI case, she said.

"They are actually paying back the citizens of the state of Texas because they went out and got drunk and caused an accident."

Although the reimbursement law is not new, few citizens know about it, Jones said.

"If they knew about the law, it could be a deterrent to drunk driving," she said.

Texas joins 16 other states that have adopted the stricter drinking and driving limit. Passage of the law qualifies the states for federal grants totaling $57.4 million this year and more money later.

County taking steps to control juvenile crime

Staff Writer

PECOS, Sept. 1, 1999 -- Juvenile crime activity is on the rise in Reeves County, but several good things have come about in an effort to lower the youth crime rate.

"We're in the process of opening up the facility for detention services," said Reeves County Juvenile Probation Director Alberto Alvarez.

He said that several things are "in the making," right now to make the Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center available for detention services, and not just a holdover facility, as it has been for the past two years.

"Juvenile crime right now is higher than what it has been in the past 2-3 months," said Alvarez. "As soon as school starts, there's a lot going on and the crime activity rises," he said.

Several new tools have been acquired through grants to curb the "activities" throughout Reeves County.

"New video cameras have been installed at the Carver school and we have also had some video equipment installed here at the facility," said Alvarez. There are currently two juvenile offenders housed at the facility at this time, following an incident that happened earlier this week.

A high-speed chase which originated in Odessa, on Monday, and involved several agencies from different counties, landed the two juveniles at the Juvenile Detention Center. Local law enforcement officers joined the high-speed chase on I-20, mile marker 72, heading west.

Three Pecos Police Department Units responded along with Reeves County Sheriff's officers. West Texas Drug Task Force officers also participated in the high-speed chase. The vehicle was finally stopped at mile marker 45, just east of Pecos, and the two 14-year-olds from the east were taken to the detention facility.

The male and female juveniles were from Anderson and Johnson Counties. "That's on the other side of Dallas," said Alvarez. "And apparently they both come from middle-class families."

This is also not the first time these two particular juveniles have been involved in a high-speed chase, he added. "They are both on probation in those two counties and arrangements have been made for them to be returned back and processed in those counties."

Alvarez said that a lot of times the problem with juveniles seems to be that they come from single-parent homes. "Of course that isn't the case all the time, but a lot of parents are having problems with their teens right now," he said.

Alvarez said he spoke to three parents this morning, about their problems with their teenagers. "They just basically want some help with their children," he said.

Aside from the East Texas teens, Alvarez said he was involved recently in the successful apprehension of two juveniles involved in graffiti at the Reeves County Library. "One has already gone to court and was found guilty," said Alvarez. "The other one is pending his hearing," he said.

Both are 13-year-olds who come from single-parent homes and both were also charged with curfew violation, according to Alvarez. "One of them lives on the far east side of town and it makes you wonder what the kid is doing so far from home, without supervision at that hour," he said.

Alvarez said that if parents don't take care of their kids, they will do crazy things. "These kids need a lot of supervision," he said.

The 13-year-old, who has already been to court and found guilty, received one year supervised court probation, restitution and a lot of community hours. "The juvenile is also on electronic monitoring and attending Carver," said Alvarez.

The school mandates that the student be placed in Carver for an 88-day term, the judge usually orders them to remain in Carver for the remainder of their probation term, according to Alvarez.

"The student is also not allowed to attend football games or any other extracurricular activities," he said.

Alvarez said his department is working on other cases, including referrals involving local gang members. "We're going to get with the county prosecutor for him to review cases thoroughly and try to determine which cases need more work," he said.

Recently, a probation officer went to make a home check and found a number of violations. "They arrested several probation violators, the probation officer was assisted by the local police department and the Reeves County Sheriff's Office," said Alvarez.

A really good way to address the curfew issue is to give out citations on the first violation, instead of just sending the juvenile home, according to Alvarez.

"We've had occasions where they pick up a juvenile and then go do a check and the juvenile is there at home," said Alvarez. "But, they go back a little later and that juvenile is gone again."

Alvarez said that with all agencies cooperating, juvenile crime will be on the decline.

Zoo adds `roos, bird, llama,  wallabies

PECOS, Sept. 1, 1999 -- Jumpin' Jehosaphat!

Two kangaroos and two wallabies are on their way to the Maxey Park Zoo, said parks director Armando Gil.

A new pea fowl and the first-ever llama are also in the group of exotic animals loaded onto a city truck at the Alamita Park Zoo in Albuquerque, N.M. this morning.

"They should be here tonight and will be on display early Thursday," Gil said.

Since vandals put pit bulls into the pen with the first wallabies in the zoo, Gil said he will place these _ along with the kangaroos _ in interior pens for their protection. The llama will probably go in a pen near the longhorns, and the pea fowl will share a pen with the current residents.

Balmorhea, Marfa preparing for holiday  events

Staff Writer

Things will be heating up around the area this weekend, with several activities planned in surrounding communities.

The Twenty Fourth Labor Day Festival is scheduled in Balmorhea on Saturday, Sept. 4.

Events include the World Championship Frijole Bean Cookoff. This is the 23rd annual Frijole Bean Cookoff.

Cooks prepare the favorite food using various fuels. First, second and third place trophies will be awarded to the winners.

The second annual Brisket Cookoff will also be held. Winners receive trophies and the champion will receive a complimentary entry (sponsored by the Pecos Chamber of Commerce) in the World Championship BBQ Cookoff held in Pecos in October.

Events for the kids are face painting, fishing pond, egg toss and watermelon eating contest. First annual "Oasis of West Texas Yo-Yo Competition," will have three novice divisions: eight and under, 12 and under and 13 and over. For yo-yo enthusiasts in the area this will be the first opportunity to show off their skills. There will be no charge for the games including the yo-yo competition.

Events for the adults include the ever-popular Washer Pitching with men's and women's divisions. Winners are awarded trophies for first, second and third place. Entry fees are $10 per team.

A dance contest will also be held. Dancers will dance to country, rock, and Tejano music. The winning couple will receive trophies and a gift certificate.

Little Joe Davilla and the Jetliners will again entertain the crowd with a dance under the stars. The dance starts at 9 p.m. and lasts until 1 a.m. Joe Davilla will MC and provide DJ music during the day. There is no fee for the dance. The Jetliners feature Tejano Music but will also play country and rock.

The 13th Annual Marfa Lights Festival features a cornucopia of musical styles and events this year are intended to provide concert goers a little bit of everything.

Along with burritos and burgers at the booths on the courthouse lawn, the art and handicrafts for sale at the vendor's booths and the yearly parade down Highland Avenue, the Marfa Chamber of Commerce has lined up a variety of music that is a little different than in years past.

The fun starts on Friday, Sept. 3, when food and vendor booths will open at 6 p.m. Then from 8 p.m. to midnight, DJ Don Rominsky of El Paso will spice things up by spinning a mix of country, rock, dance and Tejano hits at the first street dance next to the courthouse lawn.

Food and vendor booths open again at 10 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 4. The always much-anticipated Marfa Lights parade marches through downtown at 11 a.m.

Four bands are lined up for the big Saturday night concert at Vizcaino Park, which runs from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. Cecilia y los Reno Boyz begins the night's entertainment, followed by Los Tejanos, Jay Perez and headliner La Diferenzia rounding out the evening. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the gate.

On Sunday, Sept. 6, food and vendor booths open at noon. The Sunday night dance at the MAC building features blues rocker Teddy Morgan, who is coming all the way from Dallas for the show. That dance runs from 8 p.m., to midnight and tickets will be $10 in advance and $13 at the door.

Advance tickets are available at the Marfa Chamber of Commerce and will also be sold during the festival.

For more information, call the chamber office at 915-729-4942.

Season ticket sale for football runs until Sept. 23

Sales of new season tickets for the Pecos Eagles' 1999 home football games are underway now through Sept. 23 at the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah business office.

Anyone wanting to buy tickets for the team's four 1999 home games can do so at the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD Business Office, 1302 S. Park St., weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Season tickets this year are $20 per seat.

Pecos' 1999 home opener is not until Sept. 24, when they host Crane at Eagle Stadium. The other three home games are Oct. 1 against Kermit (homecoming), Oct. 15 against El Paso Mountain View and Oct. 29 against Canutillo. Pecos' season opener is 7 p.m. Thursday against Denver City at Odessa's Ratliff Stadium.


AUSTIN (AP) Results of the Cash 5 drawing Tuesday night: Winning numbers drawn: 2-14-20-22-24. Number matching five of five: 2. Prize per winner: $39,607. Winning tickets sold in: Houston, Lewisville. Matching four of five: 244. Prize: $487.


AUSTIN (AP) The winning Pick 3 numbers drawn Tuesday by the Texas Lottery, in order: 9-5-6 (nine, five, six)


High Tuesday 100; low last night 67. Tonight, partly cloudy. Low in the upper 60s. South wind 5-10 mph. Thursday, partly cloudy. High in the mid 90s. South wind 10-15 mph. Extended forecast, Thursday night, partly cloudy with a slight chance of evening showers or thunderstorms. Low in the mid 60s. Friday through Sunday, partly cloudy with a slight chance of afternoon and evening showers or thunderstorms. Lows in the mid 60s. highs in the low to mid 90s.

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Pecos Enterprise
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