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Archive 2002

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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Tuesday, February 5, 2002

Hospital board Oks bond use for CT scanner

Staff Writer
PECOS, Tues., Feb. 5, 2002 -- The Reeves County Hospital Board of Directors approved a notice of intention to issue a revenue bond to finance the purchase of a CAT scan machine, which already has been acquired by the hospital during a special meeting last night in the hospital's classroom.

Board President Linda Gholsen explained that the action taken during the meeting last night was only to approve the intention of issuance, after action was taken late last year towards acquiring the diagnostic machine.

"It was a resolution authorizing a public notice of the intention to issue a revenue bond," she said.

In a previous meeting, the Board approved the purchase of a new CAT (CT) scan machine to replace the old and outdated machine that has been in use for a number of years.

Gholsen said that the revenue bond would have a maximum aggregate principal amount of $800,000 that would be paid off within 40 years.

During the next regular meeting set for 6 p.m., on Feb. 26, the Board is scheduled to approve the actual issuance of the revenue bond, according to the notice of intention.

Gholsen said that the two local banks, Security State Bank and West Texas National Bank, have come together to issue the revenue bond to the hospital.

"They knew we had to have (a CT scan system) to service the community and surrounding areas," she said.

Although the bond vote wasn't taken until Monday night, the new CAT scan machine has already been installed at the hospital and is currently in use, according to Gholsen.

The machine was completely installed by early last week, Gholsen said.

She and the Board have requested a report on the CAT scan to include how well the system functions and the revenue brought to the hospital by that time.

Gholsen said she wants the report made in order to inform the community and "to show the purchase is justified."

The revenue brought into the hospital from the CAT scan system would help pay for the hospital's expenses along with all other revenue brought into the hospital.

"It was a necessary expense in order to continue to try to give our community and surrounding areas the best medical service possible," Gholson said.

Fund set up for Travland; Ramon still in hospital

ODESSA (AP) - As a West Texas law officer recovers from a wound suffered in a downtown gun battle, the Fraternal Order of Police has set up a fund to help pay for his medical expenses.

Cpl. Greg Travland, who underwent emergency surgery for a single gunshot wound to the thigh during the Jan. 18 gun battle, has been on a limited work schedule since the attack.

The man accused of fatally shooting his former wife and wounding Travland remained in stable condition early Tuesday at Medical Center Hospital.

Joe Ramon is recovering from four wounds he suffered in the shootout that police say started with the fatal shooting of Estela Cadena Ramon, 36, of Odessa.

Ramon, 41, has been charged with killing his estranged wife and attempted capital murder in the wounding of Travland. Bond for Ramon was set at $500,000 in a bedside arraignment Jan. 23 at the hospital.

All three people involved in the Jan. 18 shooting are former Pecos residents. Both Travland and Joe Ramon are from Pecos, while Estela Ramon moved to Pecos after marrying Joe Ramon, and both worked for a time at the Reeves County Detention Center during the early 1990s.

John Young of Sweetwater, Ramon's attorney, said it was unlikely that Ramon would be able to post bail.

The law enforcement group, which set up a special trust account for Travland at Medical Community Credit Union, said the officer is not able to work off-duty security or overtime due to his injury.

Travland had gone to Drug Screen Compliance & Consortium of the Southwest to talk to Estela Ramon, an employee at the center, about a domestic dispute. Witnesses said Ramon then entered the building and began firing a .357 revolver, killing his ex-wife and wounding Travland, who returned fire.

The gunman was pursued into an alley where more shots were exchanged. Ramon received four gunshot wounds to the his chest.

Travland, who was released from the hospital on Jan. 24, remains on paid injury leave.

Heroin reportedly seized in raids on homes

Staff Writer
PECOS, Tues., Feb. 5, 2002 -- Local law enforcement officials were busy executing narcotics search warrants this past Wednesday morning and Monday night, and report seizing heroin and drug paraphernalia in both incidents.

The first warrant was executed on Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 8:34 a.m., by officers with the Pecos Police Department, Reeves County Sheriff's Department and the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force, at a small apartment located in the 500 block of South Mesquite Street.

"The apartment is located directly west of 510 S. Mesquite Street and is the home of Sandra Ronquillo (Ortega)," said Pecos Police Investigator Paul Deishler.

Once the SWAT Team secured the premises, officers proceeded to search the area. "During the search of the premises a substance believed to be heroin was found," said Deishler.

Also found on the premises was paraphernalia commonly used in the injecting and packaging of heroin, according to police.

Officers completed their search and Sandra Ronquillo Ortega, 38, was placed under arrest for the offenses of possession of a controlled substance (heroin) and possession of drug paraphernalia. She was then transported to Reeves County jail.

The second warrant was executed at 7:30 p.m., Monday by the police, working with the Reeves County Sheriff's Department and the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force, on a home located at 508 S. Park St.

"Once the residence was secured by the SWAT Team, officers proceeded to search the premises," said Deishler.

During the search of the residence, a substance believed to be heroin was found and paraphernalia commonly used in the injecting of heroin was located, according to the report.

Officers completed their search and Gilberto Rayos Ortega, 31, Rick Ornelas Ortiz, 19, and Crissy Sanchez Lopez, 32 were arrested and charged with the offenses of possession of a controlled substance (heroin) within 1,000 feet of school property (old Pecos Junior High campus) and possession of drug paraphernalia.

"All the local agencies came together and the hard work the officers put into this paid off," said Deishler. "We appreciate the cooperation and the efforts the officers make."

Women's Division to meet at Weatherby House

PECOS, Tues., Feb. 5, 2002 -- The Women's Division of the Pecos Area Chamber of Commerce will meet at 5:30 p.m., Thursday at the Weatherby House, 423 S. Oleander St.

The women meet on the first Wednesday of the month, but have changed this month's meeting date.

New members are always welcome.

For more information contact Women's Division President Laura Briggs at 445-5155 or the chamber office at 445-2406.

Officer, 2nd man hurt in shooting at Anchor plant

Staff Writer
PECOS, Tues., Feb. 5, 2002 -- Two persons, including an off-duty Pecos police officer, were wounded early this morning in what police said was an accidental shooting at the Anchor West plant on the south side of Pecos.

The incident was the second of two for police overnight along Interstate 20 in Pecos, with the earlier one involving the discovery of 16 illegal aliens in a truck tractor parked outside the Flying J Truck Stop on Raul Florez Boulevard.

"An accidental shooting is currently under investigation," said Town of Pecos City Police Chief Clay McKinney.

McKinney said that there was a weapon discharged at Anchor West, I-20 Access Road (Palmer Street).

The shooting was reported at 3:30 a.m. and sent both officers and two ambulances to the plant, where they found the wounded men in the front area of the building. One of the men was identified as a Pecos police officer, but police did not release the names of the two shooting victims.

"There are two people with gunshot wounds and I believe both are in good condition at Reeves County Hospital," said McKinney. One person was reportedly shot in the hand and the other was shot in the chest when the weapon discharged.

The incident is being investigated by the Pecos Police Department at this time, according to McKinney, who added that not as a criminal matter, but as an administrative procedure.

"There is no indication of foul play, but as a precaution we have contacted the District Attorney and the Texas Rangers," said McKinney. "Our priorities at this time are with the officer and citizen who were wounded."

"Our prayers and wishes are with them right now," said McKinney.

Off-duty Pecos police officers are used to work security at times at the Anchor West plant, which new owner McCain Foods announced late last year it would close down beginning in early March. The plant is Pecos' largest employer, with 700 workers at the time of McCain Foods' purchase last September.

Earlier, police responded to a call at the Flying J Travel Plaza Truck Stop on I-20 at Exit 42, at about midnight.

"There was a report of an 18-wheeler stranded on U.S. 285 and South service road (Raul Florez Boulevard)," said McKinney.

Pecos Police Officers Armando Garcia, Arnulfo Rivas and Rick Martinez responded to the incident. "When they got there, there was no driver available and upon inspection, the officers located 16 illegal aliens inside," said McKinney.

U.S. Border Patrol agents out of Fort Stockton were called in and drove up to Pecos, arriving in town around 2 a.m. The illegal immigrants were released to the custody of the Border Patrol agents, according to the police report.

"They are working on that case now," said McKinney.


PECOS, Tues., Feb. 5, 2002 -- High Monday 46. Low this morning 39. Rainfall last 24 hours at Texas A&M Experiment Station .80. Forecast for tonight: Decreasing cloudiness. Lows 25 to 30. Northwest winds 5 to 15 mph. Wednesday: Partly cloudy and warmer. Highs 50 to 55. West winds 10 to 20 mph. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Lows near 30. Thursday: Partly cloudy. Highs 55 to 60. Friday: Partly cloudy. Lows 25 to 30. Highs 60 to 65.


Alicia Mata

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
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