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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Police say arrests pending

after two shot in gang fight

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- Two alleged gang members were shot, and a third person was beaten early Saturday morning following an incident on the south side of Pecos.

No arrests have been made as of yet in the case, in which two people were grazed in the head by bullets and a third person was assaulted with a baseball bat in the 2300 block of Country Club Drive.

Pecos Police Lt. Kelly Davis said that the call came in at 2 a.m., about shots being fired out at the 2300 block of Country Club Drive. Davis said that Pecos Police Sgt. Ishmael Gamboa, Patrol Officers Cesario Urias and Julio Quinones, Reeves County Deputy Danny Leos, and Texas Department of Public Safety Senior Cpl. Emmit Moore and Trooper Richard Crum responded to the scene.

One person, later identified as Mike Garcia, 18, was found at the scene with a gunshot wound, and was transported by ambulance to Reeves County Hospital, while EMS workers at the scene also treated a second person, identified as Jesus Manuel Martinez, 25, for injuries.

Upon arrival, Davis said that there seemed to have been a previous altercation one block away, at 2310 S. Eddy St., where a car window had been broken.

The car vandalized on Eddy Street is registered to Ruben Jimenez, Davis said.

"He (Jimenez) stated that he shot at the B.P.G. (Brown Pride Gang) members after they shot at him," Davis said.

About 30 minutes after officers arrived at Country Club Drive, a second ambulance call was reported for a shooting victim on West 14th Street.

"A call came in at 2:34 a.m. at the 200 block of West 14th in reference to a male subject with gun shot wounds to the head," Davis said. "The individual was Julian Olivas Jr."

He added that Olivas, 20, was transported to the emergency room at Reeves County Hospital where he refused treatment and was released.

"He was involved in the incident," Davis said. "He started running when the shooting occurred."

Garcia also suffered from a minor gun shot wound to the back of the head and was transported to Reeves County Hospital were he was treated and released.

Though there were four bullet shells found at the scene, Davis said that they had not recovered a gun but had recovered a knife and two baseball bats at various locations.

The other local B.P.G. member involved was identified as Miguel Jurado, 17. Davis said that both Garcia and Jurado walked up to the scene where the shootings occurred.

Martinez sustained one broken bone when he was beaten outside the house on Country Club Drive, Davis said.

The report also stated that the vehicle the gang members were in was also vandalized at the scene, with the windshield broken out both tires on the driver's side of the vehicle punctured.

Davis added incident took place at the residence of Mark Salazar and that the vehicle that was vandalized on Country Club Drive belonged to Elario Bustamantes.

According to Davis, they know that more people are involved but are waiting on statements before making any arrests.

Overnight I-20 traffic stop turns up 17 illegals in truck

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- A traffic stop for speeding early this morning on Interstate 20 west of Pecos led to the discovery of 17 illegal aliens, including a mother and her baby, hidden in the cargo area of a utility truck headed from El Paso to Dallas.

Department of Public Safety Trooper Arnulfo Rivas made the traffic stop, shortly before 2 a.m. today on I-20 near the 33-mile marker, seven miles west of Pecos. Rivas said there were two men in the passenger's compartment of the truck when he pulled the truck over for speeding, and later called in other troopers along with Reeves County sheriff's deputies to help with the investigation after the 17 illegal aliens were found hidden behind pieces of furniture stacked in the rear of the truck.

"He said he was going from El Paso to Dallas," Rivas said. "At least that's where he said he was going. He said he was supposed to be moving his furniture to Dallas."

Reeves County Chief Deputy Victor Prieto said that the driver, who was not identified, was a United States citizen, but was operating the truck with a suspended license. "He was placed under arrest and after that they found the people in there."

Rivas said he did not hear any of the illegal aliens inside the truck when he first made the traffic stop, and didn't discover them until opening the rear cargo door and checking the area behind the furniture.

Temperatures were in the low 70s when the traffic stop was made, but Rivas said, "I went back in there to see if anybody was there, and it was hot in that truck."

The traffic stop comes two weeks after 19 illegal immigrants died after being locked in a truck being driven towards Houston from the Lower Rio Grande Valley. The 17 illegals, including three other children along with the baby, were turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol officials in Pecos following the traffic stop, while the driver was transported to Reeves County Jail in Pecos on the traffic violation.

Border Patrol officials did not say if the driver would face federal charges of transporting illegal aliens. They said the case remains under investigation and a statement in connection with the case would be released later.

Reception to mark Zavala's closing after 50 years

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- A come-and-go reception on Wednesday will mark the closing of a 50-year-old junior high school in Pecos, a victim of the declining enrollment in Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD schools.

The farewell reception at Zavala Middle School is scheduled from 5-7 p.m., Wednesday, at the campus and everyone is invited to attend.

"We're welcoming all exes and the community, to come by and see the school one last time," said Nancy Ontiveros. "This is for everyone, not just the ones who had the opportunity to attend school at this facility."

Zavala began its life as East Pecos Junior High School in 1953, and Ontiveros said that the school existed in different era, with segregation and boundary lines in effect in Pecos campuses.

"In 1958, it was the first year that the African-Americans had the opportunity to attend school there," said teacher Delma Molinar.

Molinar has been a teacher for 45 years, many spent at that campus.

"I started teaching in 1958 and started teaching at that campus and will end my teaching career at that campus," said Molinar, who worked with sixth graders, who have been housed at the campus for the past three years.

She has taught at other campuses in-between, including 19 years at Pecos High School, but said that Zavala will always hold warm, fond memories for her.

"There was always a lot of pride and loyalty in that school," said Molinar. "There was a lot of respect for the teachers and a special bond formed."

"High school students were integrated in 1954 and until 1978, there were (junior high) dividing lines and boundary lines," said Molinar.

Zavala housed both seventh and eighth grade students until 1987, when the district divided its campuses by grades. Zavala remained home to the district's seventh graders until three years ago, when seventh graders were moved to Crockett Middle School and sixth graders were moved to Zavala from Lamar Middle School. Next year, sixth grade students will attend Bessie Haynes Elementary, along with fourth and fifth graders.

On Wednesday, the Zavala Student Council will be conducting tours of the facility, showing all of the changes throughout the years.

A special program has been put together for all attendees, according to Ontiveros.

"Annuals will be displayed to reflect and reminisce on the past and a special wall has been designated so that all the exes can leave their messages on it," she said, and refreshments will be served.

"Many of the parents will be on hand for the reception, according to Ontiveros, who explained that this all came about because many of the exes wanted to see the facility one last time and have a reunion of some kind at their former school.

In 1952, East Pecos Junior High was constructed to house fifth through eighth grades and zoning established. The League of United Latin-American Citizens (LULAC) contested construction of this school, but zoning and construction was upheld by the commissioner of education and by the State Board of Education.

East Pecos Junior High was renamed de Zavala Junior High in 1974, at the same time North Pecos (Lamar) Elementary, South Pecos (Austin) Elementary, Pecos (Crockett) Junior High and were renamed after Texas heroes.

UT prof, student killed in rollover near Balmorhea

Staff Writer

PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- A one-vehicle rollover Memorial Day on Interstate 10 between Fort Stockton and Balmorhea claimed the lives of a University of Texas professor and a student, while three others were injured.

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety report the accident occurred at about 2:45 p.m. near mile maker 224 on Interstate 10,17 miles east of Balmorhea,

The report stated that the van was one of a six-vehicle caravan of 20 to 25 geology students on a field trip to West Texas from Austin, Department of Public Safety officials said. As the van was westbound just past the Reeves-Pecos County line, it veered off the road. The driver then overcorrected causing it to roll over, throwing two victims from the van.

The victims were identified as Robert Kent Goldhammer, 46, and Raquel Vieira Desavariego, 26. They were pronounced dead by Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace Rosendo Carrasco.

The report stated that neither passenger was wearing their seat belt.

The bodies were taken to Pecos Funeral Home.

The three passengers who suffered from injuries were identified as Kevin Eugune Burns, 28, Timothy James Gibbon, 45 and Yusliza Mahdsufian, 22.They were listed in stable condition with non-incapacitating injuries after being transported to Reeves County Hospital in Pecos and Pecos County Memorial Hospital in Fort Stockton.

All three passengers were later transported to Odessa Medical Center.

Burns was treated and released. He was the only one wearing his seat belt at the time of the accident.

Gibbon and Mahdsufian were not wearing their safety belt.

Alpine Game Warden Ray Speared also assisted in providing medical treatment to the passengers of the vehicle, the DPS office reported.

According to the DPS office the group of student and professors were on a six-week geology study.

Trooper Gorden Scheider is the lead investigator with Trooper Terry Gilchrest assisting.

Abatement plan for TransPecos on RCH agenda

PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- The Reeves County Hospital District Board of Directors will hold its regular monthly meeting today, at 6 p.m., in the RCH classroom to swear in its newly elected board members and discuss and consider a tax abatement with Trans Pecos Foods.

The directors will also discuss and take action on the construction/renovation revenue bonds, the nursing scholarship program and the amendment to hospital bylaws - joint conference committee.

Route items as the monthly tax report, financial statements and budget amendments, the payment of bills and its minutes from its previous meeting will also be discussed and considered.


PECOS, Tues., May 27, 2003 -- High Memorial Day 89. Low this morning 65. Forecast for tonight: Partly cloudy. Lows near 60. East winds 5 to 15 mph. Wednesday: Partly cloudy. Highs near 90. East winds 5 to 15 mph. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Lows near 60.


Howard Davis, Margaret Fernandes, Emily Gray Foster, Gerald Wayne Gough and Romana Nunez

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