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December 1, 1997
Stores caught selling alcohol to minors
By CARA ALLIGOOD
PECOS, December 1, 1997 - In a recent undercover investigation conducted by Pecos police and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) 12 of 19 Pecos stores checked sold alcohol to a minor.
The November investigation was prompted by an increasing number of incidents involving minors under the influence of alcohol in Pecos. Incidents that required police intervention and led to the investigation included drunken driving, assaults and other disturbances.
The investigation was initiated to determine what establishments were or were not in compliance with Texas laws regarding the sale of alcoholic beverages to minors. When it comes to the purchase of, possession of, or consumption of alcohol in Texas a minor is someone younger than 21.
A method known as a reverse sting was chosen for this particular investigation. Local TABC agents selected the locations to be targeted. One undercover person, who is a minor, attempted to purchase beer at 19 different businesses in the Pecos area. The agent purchased beer at 12 of those businesses. Each alcohol purchase attempt was either personally witnessed by law enforcement officers and/or video and audio taped.
"We saw this becoming a problem, the underage people obtaining alcoholic beverages, and we felt this was the best way to curtail the problem," said Pecos Police Chief Troy Moore.
The undercover team consisted of three TABC agents and two Pecos police officers. Both agencies are alarmed at the rate of stores selling alcohol to minors.
Efforts to monitor and curb the consumption of alcohol by minors will be continued by both agencies. Reverse stings will continue in other areas where alcoholic beverages are sold, according to both agencies. These efforts will also target adults who purchase alcoholic beverages for minors.
Additionally, TABC members will work with Pecos police to educate store employees in an effort to curb the growing problem of alcohol sales to minors.
Those persons charged with violations of liquor laws will be tried in county court. Any person found guilty faces penalties of up to one year in the Reeves County Jail and/or a fine not to exceed $4,000. Moore said those cases will be filed at a later date.
Golden angels bring cheer to elderly
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, December 1, 1997 - An idea conceived by one Pecos resident may make this Christmas cheerier for some of the older people in the community.
"This is something I've been wanting to do for the past couple of years," said Gilda Vejil.
Vejil is the creator of "The Golden Angel Tree," located in the Pecos Nursing Home Lobby.
The tree is decorated with golden angels that are inscribed with the names of all the residents of the home. Attached to the angels are little gift cards with the residents' choice of a gift or two.
"Some residents listed two things, but if the person who selects an angel wants to purchase just one of the items that's great," said Vejil.
Anyone in the area can go to the nursing home, select an angel and buy a gift for the resident listed on the angel.
"There's a lot of organizations out there, doing their best to provide a good Christmas for the kids in the community, but nobody ever really thinks about the older individuals in our community," said Vejil.
"I think it's great that they're working for the children, but our older people also need some attention, love and someone to show them that they care," said Vejil.
Vejil explained that some of the residents at the Pecos Nursing Home are from out of town or their family lives out of town and they don't receive very many gifts or attention during the holiday season.
"I just want to bring some cheer into their lives, especially at this time of the year," she said.
"That's why I call it a 'Golden Angel Tree,' for the golden years," said Vejil.
One resident listed that she wanted some house shoes and an art kit, but whoever picks out that resident needs only to purchase one of the items listed, according to Vejil.
After an individual buys a gift, they should put their name and phone number on the name tag for that resident. There are 80 residents at the home and so far there are 51 angels left on the tree, according to Vejil.
"I want to make this a better world, and maybe if we start thinking of others, we can all get along better," said Vejil.
Vejil said she always told her children before she died she wanted to reach out and help as many people as she could, and to her this is just a small way to do it.
Already she is planning "Golden Stockings" for next year.
Vejil thanked those who helped her with the project, including Leo Elliott who printed the angels, Gibson True Value who donated the connections, Hela's Flowers who donated the bows, ladies from Primera Iglesia, and Jamie Windham, Cookie Canon, Christina Sonnen and Debbie Curry who cut the angels out.
"It's great to have people help when you ask them," said Vejil. "Especially since it's for a very good cause," she said.
Sheriff, deputies get new vehicles
PECOS, December 1, 1997 - John Oscar Barfield, Jr., 77, died Sunday, Nov. 30, 1997, at Reeves County Hospital.
Barfield was born June 8, 1920, in San Angelo. He was a U.S. Navy World War II veteran who had lived in Pecos since 1951. He was also a retired rancher and a Baptist.
Services are scheduled for 2 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 2, at Pecos Funeral Home Chapel with L.H. Woodard officiating. Burial will be in Mount Evergreen Cemetery.
He was preceded in death by one daughter, Barbara Nelle Fonville.
Survivors include: his wife Ruby Nell Barfield of Pecos; one son, John Barfield of Pecos; four grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
PECOS, December 1, 1997 - High Sunday, 64, low this morning, 42. Rain mixed with snow is forecast for northern sections of the Texas Panhandle on Tuesday morning, changing to snow during the afternoon. The winter weather will be part of an approaching low pressure system that will reach West Texas during the night. It will be mostly cloudy to cloudy across West Texas through Tuesday. Most of the region will get rain through Tuesday with the snow confined to northern sections of the Panhandle. Lows tonight will be in the 20s and 30s in the Panhandle and in the 30s and 40s elsewhere in West Texas. Highs Tuesday will be in the 40s and 50s.
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