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Archive 2003

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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Cocaine seized by officers during drug raid

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., March 11, 2003 -- The Pecos Police Department/Reeves County Sheriff Department  Swat Team and the 143rd District  Attorney's Office executed a search warrant last night on the south side of Pecos  and arrested one man on drug charges.

Sgt. Paul Deishler, Narcotics Investigator for the Pecos PD, said that he received information that Francisco Tomas Ortiz, 25, was selling cocaine from his residence, located at 2401 Teague St.

"With the information that was provided we were able to ask for a search warrant issued by Judge Jim Riley," Deishler said.

The warrant was executed yesterday at approximately 7:53 p.m., with 13 Swat Team members and one Emergency Medical Technician.

Deishler said they found paraphernalia, along with a cocaine scale and baggies used for the distribution of the cocaine.

"Upon entering the master bedroom we found 29.3 grams of cocaine," Deishler said.

The street value of the cocaine would be about $2,900, Deishler said.

"Criminal charges are pending with others residing at the home," Deishler added.

Ortiz is currently in jail as of this morning and will remain in custody until he is arraigned. He has been charged with possession of a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a playground, which is a first-degree felony, Deishler said.

Ortiz is also a member of the local band `Maravilla'.

"We appreciate the EMTs for coming out with us. Last night it was John Cravey," Deishler said. "Without them we would not be able to execute the warrants and they do it on their own time."

Red Bluff remains unsure of water release

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., March 11, 2003 -- Red Bluff Water District board members will decide in April on  any possible water release for farmers along the Pecos River in 2003.

Meeting this morning in Pecos, the board discussed whether or not there was enough water in Red Bluff Lake to allow for water releases this year. A lack of water in 2002 prevented farmers along the Pecos River from receiving any lake water last year, and the level of the lake remained below 60,000 acre/feet at the beginning of this month.

Managing Director Randal Hartman said because of the lack of rain over the past few years and the low level of the Pecos River, water losses from any release downstream would be higher than in normal years.

"We're going to lose about 60 percent at this point because everything's so dry" he said. The district normally calculates a 50 percent water loss from releases downstream.

"At some point in time we might be able to do a release. We might get a big rain in the next month," Hartman said, while board member Lloyd Goodrich said the district should move ahead with plans for a 2003 water release.

"You've got some people out there who have some permanent crops. Unless they get some rain they're going to really hurt," he said. Alfalfa farmers were mentioned as the ones who would be hurt the most by a second straight year without a water release.

In pushing for a release this year, Goodrich added that due to water release averaging and New Mexico's drought problems, "We may not get any water from New Mexico next year."

Hartman said that engineers with HDR, which was in charge of the replacement of the dam's gates and tunnels two years ago, said the new construction needed to remain underwater, which would limit water releases.

"We need to hold at around 35,000 (acre/feet). We can't pull it down to the head gates. That's what HDR told us, they don't need sunlight and wave action," he said.

As a result, the district could only afford to allocate about 20,000 acre/feet for any water releases this year. With a 60 percent loss rate, Hartman said that would mean farmers would get about 8,000 acre/feet by the time it came down the Pecos River.

"Eight-thousand divided up into little sections is not going to make anybody a crop," said board member Jay Lee.

"We need to do something with the water," Hartman said. "Let's wait and put it on the books for next month's meeting."

In other action, the board approved a new policy for full-time employees, based on rules set up by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (formerly the TNRCC), with board members Manuel Lujan and Dick Slack absent and Goodrich abstaining; they also approved cash disbursements, receipts and accounts payable for March, and were told that pumping of salt water out of Malaga Bend by Sun West Salt Co. should begin within the next few days.

"They didn't put the monitors in until (last) Tuesday, and they're going to pump that well to clean it out before they put the meter in," Hartman said.

Two ponds between one and two acres in size have been built to hold the water, which will then be evaporated and the salt mined by Sun West. Hartman said it would take about a year between the first pumping into the pond and the time when it would be ready for mining.

Red Bluff members are hoping the pumping will provide both additional funds from salt payments, and cut salt levels in the Pecos River and Red Bluff Lake by about 50 percent.

Trip, 5-year technology plan given board approval

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., March 11, 2003 -- Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD board members approved a trip to Sul  Ross for the National Hispanic Institute, a long-range technology plan and  other items during their regular meeting held last Thursday.

Board members approved the 2003 National Hispanic Institute trip to Sul Ross at Alpine, and to provide transportation to the event.

"It costs about $75 or less for 15 students," said superintendent Don Love.

He said that about 15 students would attend the event and total cost would be about $600. "We'll just drop them off and three days later pick them back up," said Love. "It's a great program and allows a student to also see how campus life is like."

Board members also approved a five-year technology plan outlined by Technology Director Jodi Exum.

"We always have a long-range plan and will always have to be doing updates," said Exum. "We want to always have something to look forward to."

The long-range plan is from 2003-2008. "Just because it's here in this plan doesn't mean it has to happen and things change constantly in technology, there may be some things we need to add," she said, adding that the long-range technology plans are usually approved three years at a time.

Exum said that they had been looking at going with wireless connections. "This would save us money, but it's not very reliable yet," she said.

Some of the teachers had requested laptops, but Exum said that those were sometimes more expensive than desktop computers. "They want them to take them home and do work there, but that's just not possible at this time," she said.

The group approved the purchase of foreclosed property located at 611 S. Elm, for $500 a bid by Maria Martinez.

Board members approved resignations including: Kittie Gibson, history/career connections teacher/Crockett Middle School, effective May 31;

Rosa Granado, second grade teacher/Austin Elementary, effective May 31;

George Patlan, District ESL/Migrant Teacher, effective May 30;

Bill Riggs, journalism teacher/Pecos High School, effective May 30;

Nora Toscano, history teacher/Pecos High School, effective May 30.

The group approved several teacher renewals, but declined to renew the contract for Mary Ann Box, a subject that was discussed in closed session.

The motion made by the board directed the superintendent to give written notice to Box that the board proposes to non-renew her term contract for 2003-2004.

Rec department soccer sign-up deadline nears

PECOS, Tues., March 11, 2003 -- The deadline is this Saturday to sign up children for the Reeves County Community Sports and Recreation Department spring youth soccer leagues.

The league is open to boys and girls ages 4½ through 13. Parents can pick up their forms at the recreation department officer during regular business hours between now and Saturday. Returned forms must have both parents' signatures and a birth certificate must be provided when the form is returned.

Sign-up fee is $10 per player. For further information, call the recreation department at 447-9776.

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.


Jacob Perez, 32, was arrested at 2:06 a.m. on March 10 at the Criminal Justice Center on an outstanding DPS warrant for tires less than 2/23 inches and failure to appear.


Luis Orona, 32, was arrested 6:04 p.m. on March 8 at Madison and Missouri streets for warrants for possession of alcoholic beverage/open container, two warrants for violation failure to appear, warrant for theft under $50, and a Reeves County warrant for hours of sale of beer prohibited.


Jesus Armendarez, was arrested at 11:12 p.m. on March 8 at the Texaco on U.S. 285 at I-20 on a capias warrant for assault under the family violence act.


Kenneth Schweich, 39, was arrested at 12:58 a.m. on March 8, at the Criminal Justice Center for outstanding DPS warrants no license for type of vehicle, outstanding warrant for operating an unregistered vehicle and warrant for failure to appear.


Two male juveniles were arrested at 1:34 p.m. on March 8 in the 1100 block of Locust Street for evading arrest and possession of marijuana.


Melissa Lopez, 36 was arrested at 3:52 p.m. on March 4 in the 500 block of Oak Street on warrants for failure to require juvenile to attend school, driving at an unsafe speed, no liability insurance and no drivers license.


Edel Acosta, 21, was arrested at 10:37 p.m. on March 3, in the 700 block of Daggett Street for a warrant for making a false statement to a police officer.


Thomas Marquez, 35, was arrested at 9:38 p.m. on March 3 at La Cantina for public intoxication.


PECOS, Tues., March 11, 2003 -- High Tuesday 80. Low this morning 48. Forecast  for tonight...Partly cloudy. Patchy fog late. Lows near 50. South winds 5  to 15 mph. Wednesday...Partly cloudy. Highs in the mid 80s.  Southwest winds 5 to 15 mph. Wednesday night...Partly cloudy. Lows in  the upper 40s. Thursday...Partly cloudy. Highs in the mid 80s.  Friday...Partly cloudy. Slight chance of thunderstorms. Lows near 50.  Highs near 80.

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Pecos Enterprise
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