Daily Newspaper for Reeves County, Trans Pecos, Big Bend, Far West Texas

Main Menu|Archives Menu|Classified|Advertising|Monahans|


Tuesday, September 17, 1996

Milk price rise offers some aid to local dairies

Return to Menu

Staff Writer

PECOS, September 17, 1996 - High feed prices have forced up the price of
milk and other dairy products in the free market created by the 1995
farm bill.

Estimates are that milk could go to $3 a gallon in some markets after
the Oct. 1 increase. The dairy owner will get about $1.29 of that.

In fact, store prices for dairy goods could increase 12 percent this
year, says Donald Ratajczak, director of the economic forecasting
project at Georgia State University.

Greg Mitchell, co-owner of Trans-Pecos Dairy, said the price increase
is late in coming.

"We should have had more last May and June," he said.

Feed prices have gone out of sight this year, Mitchell said. Grain
stocks were depleted, and there is little hope that they can be
replenished next year.

Mitchell said he has been able to buy much of his hay and silage from
local producers, but he must import grain, cottonseed and soy products
from other areas. Much of it comes from Kansas, and he is buying soy
hulls out of Illinois now.

His feed prices increased 30-35 percent this past year, he said.

Caught in the squeeze between high feed prices and low prices for
cattle culled from the herd, dairymen like the Mitchells have had a
tough year. Herd reduction has played a part in pushing up the price of

Milk cooperatives are changing their marketing methods to cut their
overhead, and in some ways that has added to the dairyman's headaches.

Mitchell said small dairies are especially hurting because buyers want
to pick up a full load of milk at one dairy, rather than traveling to
several locations for smaller amounts to make up a load.

He expects the trend to be for existing dairies to expand, but he's not
in a position to do that now.

"Maybe in a few years," he said. "Right now everything is just holding

Despite a big push to attract new dairies to this area, the market
won't support it at this time, said C.W. Roberts, Reeves-Loving counties
extension agent.

"Until there is some marketing changes, I really don't expect any to
come in," Roberts said. "The co-ops have all the milk they can handle."

He said producers in this area have had some good look with forages for
dairies - hay and silage - which should help existing dairies.

"Hay and silage are the main things right now," Mitchell said. "It is
hard to grow good hay down here. Everybody is still trying to figure out
what you have to do to get the amount of tonnage to make it pay. There's
a trick to growing it in this heat."

Mitchell said forage crops are easier to grow in New Mexico, and
dairies have proliferated there, most moving from California. But
dairymen in New Mexico have complained they are not getting a fair price
for their milk.

One reason is that companies that purchase the milk, such as San
Antonio-based H.E.B., want all the milk to be at 38-39 degrees and clean
to increase shelf life.

But many small dairies want to deliver milk at 42 degrees, which Texas
grades A.

"Dairymen can say it is Grade A, but that doesn't matter, because the
customer wants it at 38 degrees," he said. "So you have fighting among
dairymen on that."

Mitchell sees one bright spot on the horizon created by the free-market
system. It should keep out speculators who "jump in" when prices are
high and go out of business when they are low, he said.

"The people that want to stay, they will have to ride a lot of high and
lows," he said. "I like this (free market), and I think in the future it
could be a lot better than now."

Milk is not the only product that has gone up this year, Mitchell
noted. On example is cereal, which "went up big time."

World demand controls market prices, he said. When countries like China
have a poor grain crop, they will purchase grain from other countries at
whatever price they have to in order to feed their people, Mitchell said.

"You can sell a cow, but you can't sell people."

Sentencing of Brito family continues

Return to Menu

Staff Writer

PECOS, September 17, 1996 - Turning a deaf ear to the argument that
trial evidence did not prove Adan Brito helped import more than 1,000
kilograms of marijuana in 1995, Senior Judge Lucius Bunton on Monday
sentenced the young Midland man to 12 years in federal prison.

He recommended Brito serve his term in Seagoville Federal Correctional
Institute rather than Big Spring, because some of the people who
testified against him are there.

Public Defender Bill Maynard recalled the testimony of one of those
witnesses, Oscar Salinas.

"I see a big contradiction between the testimony of Salinas at trial and
the assertion in the pre-sentence report there were 11 loads totaling
1,006 kilograms," Maynard said.

He argued that, even if Adan Brito was involved in importing 1,006
kilograms of marijuana from Mexico along with four of his brothers, that
included the packaging, and the net weight would have been less than
1,000 kilograms.

An amount under 1,000 kilograms would result in a much lighter sentence
under federal sentencing guidelines.

Judge Bunton said 1,006 kilograms is proper, but he did not allow the
government's claim of additional time for obstruction of justice.

That count of the indictment concerned another Brito brother threatening
a witness, and Judge Bunton found that Adan Brito was not involved.

Maynard asked for leniency because of Brito's family responsibilities
and concern for his children.

"I commend you, Mr. Brito," Judge Bunton said. "The pre-sentence
investigation reflects you have been a loving father and have taken
family responsibility, contrary to what some other PSI's showed in this
particular deal."

His sentence of 144 months in prison on each of four separate counts of
conspiracy to import and possess marijuana, and possession with intent
to distribute marijuana are to run concurrently, with four years
supervised release and no fine.

Adan's brother, Pablo Salinas Brito, was sentenced Friday to 44 years in
prison. Adrian, Jesus and Ignacio Brito were to be sentenced at noon

Police still seek information

on pellet gun shooting spree

Return to Menu

Staff Writer

PECOS, September 17, 1996 - Police are keeping their, "eyes and ears
open," for information leading to the arrest of person or persons
responsible for shooting out glass windows and shooting into other
property at more 44 locations throughout town last week.

Pecos Police Captain David Montgomery said the department continues
with the investigation into the incident, including "canvassing of
witnesses." He explained that consisted of questioning persons who were
out during the time they believe the shootings occurred.

"We feel they occurred between 5:30 p.m. and the time we discovered the
broken window (at American National Insurance)," said Montgomery. Police
first discovered the broken window at that downtown location about 1:03
a.m., Friday.

Some of the buildings and property listed in the police report, "had
old damage to them," said the police captain.

He added that the weapon used was probably a CO2 pellet pistol or rifle.

Some of the buildings, "had multiple damage," Montgomery stated. He
added that businesses which remained open through the night hours did
not sustain damage.

The shooting spree covered an area along West Third Street and south
Oak and Cypress streets in the downtown area as well as sites on South
Eddy Street. Both Valley Motors and Colt Chevrolet/Buick, located on
Balmorhea Highway and Palmer Street were also hit by the vandals.

Montgomery said the shootings were done from a moving vehicle. "We
could tell they were done while driving by," he said.

Lee given deferred adjudication for August incidents

Doctor fined for contact with women

Return to Menu

Staff Writer

A local medical practitioner pled no contest this past weekend to three
separate Class C misdemeanor charges resulting from his contact with
three women during office visits.

Dr. Chun Lee, of #18 Winding Way, who has an office on south Eddy
Street, was served the warrant on Saturday by Justice of the Peace
Precinct 3 Joel Madrid. One warrant charged him with knowingly and
intentionally causing physical contact with another person and two with
assault by offensive contact.

He is currently serving a 90 day deferred adjudication sentence (30 days
for each count) after paying $1,500 fine. A stipulation that he not be
left alone with his patients was included in the disposition. A $200
fine will be imposed for each violation of this rule.

Madrid handed down the sentence and Lee signed the document on Saturday,
according to court records.

According to reports filed with the Reeves County Sheriff's Department,
on August 14, one of the complainant stated to Chief Deputy Fred Lujan
that during an office visit for her son, Dr. Lee handed her a note
stating that he wanted to have sexual intercourse with her. The woman
then told the officer that when she threw the note at him he got up and
reached for her when she pushed him away and called out for his nurse.

She added that the doctor showed up at her mother's house that evening
and twice after that, each time asking for her.

A second woman, who was also took her children in to see the doctor,
told Reeves County Deputy Tony Aguilar on August 29 that on August 28
the doctor handed her a note stating, "I like you, may I come to your
house, for fun, make friend." A copy of the note is attached to the
woman's sworn affidavit.

This occurred after he fondled one of her breasts, the woman said,
claiming that one of her children had seen the act.

The woman later told deputies that the doctor showed up at her
residence on August 31 asking a neighbor about her. The neighbor's
witness account was included with the woman's testimony.

The third complainant had withdrawn her testimony from court records,
wishing that her name not be mentioned.

Area News Roundup

Return to Menu

The Fort Stockton Pioneer
FORT STOCKTON, Sept. 12, 1996 - Fort Stockton ISD trustees became the
second local governing body to approve its budget for 1997 and the
second to approve a higher tax rate. The $15.99 million budget is the
lowest in recent years. Some board members and citizens opposed the tax
rate increase. Mineral values will go up next year, said businessman
Ross Jones. The Fort Stockton City Council kept the tax rate at 50 cents
per $100 valuation in adopting a $6.4 million budget, up slightly from
last year. Property valuation in the city increased $1 million.

Jeff Davis County Mountain Dispatch
FORT DAVIS, Sept. 12, 1996 - Jeff Davis County and area officials were
"served" with writs of seizure this week from the Republic of Texas'
Common Court in the Milam District at Fort Worth. The writs threaten
officials with liens against their personal property if they continue to
do business with public funds and the Fort Davis State Bank. The bank
was also served notice its assets will be seized if it does business
with the county and not through ROT's treasury. ROT claims all the banks
and assets in Texas. ROT ambassador Rick McLaren also requested a Texas
Defense Force be assigned to his office "in the first fully operational
embassy of ROT operating on the soil of the Nation of Texas in Jeff
Davis County near Fort Davis." Federal Judge Lucius Bunton was notified
of the filings because he has ordered McLaren to cease such actions.

The Big Bend Sentinel
MARFA, Sept. 12, 1996 - It looked like a cop convention at the Presidio
County jail in Marfa Tuesday morning. The grand jury was in session and
U.S. Customs Service and Border Patrol agents, a Texas Ranger and other
law enforcement officers were in the hall waiting to testify about their
cases. It was a festive atmosphere; a din of noise as officers talked
and joked among themselves, trading good-natured verbal barbs. But one
lawman sat quietly in an office, managing a forced smile when fellow
officers chatted with him. He was Presidio County Deputy Sheriff Oscar
Gallegos, and grand jurors Tuesday also were to consider whether he
acted within the scope of his duties when he shot and wounded an Ojinaga
man on May 28. After lunch, the grand jury questioned Gallegos and other
officers, then no billed him. He gave bear hugs to fellow officers and
shook the hands of grand jurors as they left.

The Alpine Avalanche
ALPINE, Sept. 12, 1996 - The Alpine City Council has adopted a $5.2
million budget, up 38 percent over last year. Much of the increase is
for high-priority projects partially financed by grant money. The tax
rate was set at 42.93 cents per $100 valuation. Major projects include
$89,250 for the airport terminal building furnishings, $174,000 for a
new fire truck; $225,480 for 10 blocks of paving and street
improvements; two new water tanks and improvement of the sewer plant.

The International, Presidio Paper
PRESIDIO, Sept. 12, 1996 - The Presidio City Council appointed justice
of the peace Daniel Bodine as municipal court judge at its Tuesday
evening meeting. He replaces former city judge William Chandler. "The
big challenge for me will be to help enforce the city ordinances,"
Bodine said. "The city has made a lot of progress in building and animal
control codes, and I'm glad to step in and help the city carry this out.
That have been the areas that have needed to be addressed."

The Sul Ross Skyline
MONAHANS, Sept. 12, 1996 - After years of negotiations, lawsuits, heated
discussions and political repercussions, it appears the City of Monahans
is on the verge of selling water to the Southwest Sandhills Water Supply
Corporation, The City Council on Tuesday approved a contract with the
non-profit water corporation to serve an area from Thorntonville to
Ranchero Heights near the Crane Cutoff.

The Ozona Stockman
OZONA, Sept. 12, 1996 - A large crowd came to commissioners court Monday
afternoon, with most there in support of having 911 in Crockett County.
This county is the only one in the state without the 911 emergency phone
system. Ozona Woman's Forum has made obtaining 911 their project for the
year. They have researched methods of 911 operation in area counties and
do not believe that additional employees would be necessary to have the
service here.


Return to Menu

PECOS, September 17, 1996 - High Monday 89, low last night 61. Lows
tonight will be in the 50s and 60s in West Texas, the 60s across North
Texas and in the 70s in South Texas. Highs Wednesday will be in the 70s
and 80s in West Texas, ranging upward into the 90s in the Big Bend area,
in the 80s across North Texas and in the 80s and 90s in South Texas.

Return to Menu

Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall
not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or
redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium. Neither these AP
Materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for
personal and non-commercial use. The AP will not be held liable for
any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the
transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages
arising from any of the foregoing.

Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
Return to Menu

Return to Home Page