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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Monday, July 13, 1998

Plenty of heat with little rain

From Staff and Wire Reports
The hot dry weather that Pecos has been experiencing since May has now spread into Central Texas, causing more problems there than for those in West Texas accustomed to 100-plus readings in July.

The hottest day of the 1990s was recorded in the Dallas-Fort Worth area Sunday. Temperatures reached a record high of 110 degrees at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and 112 at Fort Worth Meacham Field.

The mercury has not gone that high in the metroplex since the brutal summer of 1980, when there were 69 days of 100-degrees or more.

Temperatures were just as hot in the Pecos area, as the mercury hit 111 degrees on Sunday before clouds moved in, while soaring to 109 degrees late Saturday afternoon.

Thunderstorms built up both Saturday and Sunday over the Davis Mountains, and a severe thunderstorm warning was issued for Jeff Davis County on Saturday. But none of the clouds had the staying power to reach Pecos, though the sparse clouds that did manage to get all the way here on Sunday did provide some shade from the afternoon sun and gave the city a few drops shortly after 6 p.m.

Pecos got a few more raindrops, mainly on the east side of town, just before midnight Sunday, from a thunderstorm that built up south of Barstow, while another small storm that built up just after sunset on Saturday dropped rain north of town. But for the year, Pecos' rain total remains at under one inch.

Other afternoon storms which built up to the east did delay Pecos' Little League Tournament baseball game in Crane briefly, but the cantaloupe fields around Coyanosa also missed out on the showers, with just a trace of rain reported at the Coyanosa Co-Op.

The last time Dallas hit 110 was on July 18, 1980. The all-time record of 113 was recorded three weeks earlier that year, on June 26-27.

The juggernaut heat is the result of a stubborn high pressure center that's been loitering over Texas for nearly a month.

``The pressure causes the air to sink, and as it compresses, it causes it to heat up,'' said Jason Jordan of the National Weather Service in Fort Worth.

And as for that old saw about it being a dry heat, the National Weather Service said that is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

``The atmosphere and ground also dried up a little bit and that allowed it to heat up very efficiently,'' Jordan said.

Jordan said the average temperature for this time of year is a relatively mild 96 degrees.

Surprisingly, utilities did not receive a record demand for power. In fact, the demand wasn't even this year's highest.

``We did have a large demand for power, but this is the weekend,'' said TU Electric spokesman Chris Schein.

Schein said that power needs are higher during the week, when more businesses are open.

At any one time throughout the day, demand for power was 19.7 million kilowatts, Schein said. An average summer demand is about 18 million kilowatts, and the highest demand so far in 1998 was 20.8 million kilowatts, he said.

The good news about the heat is that it's not the worst ever in Texas, or even this year. The mercury climbed to 120 in Seymour on Aug. 12, 1936, and again in Monahans on June 28, 1994.

The South Texas town of Kingsville reached 115 on June 15 of this year.

While 100-plus temperatures have been around West Texas since mid-May, the toll on people has been higher in North Central Texas during the past week.

An elderly man was found dead in his small mobile home in southeast Dallas Sunday. Authorities said he had tried in vain for about a week to get his air conditioner fixed.

It was the eighth death of the year attributed to the he so far this summer in Dallas County.

Crew using Pecos as base for mapping job

Staff Writer
For the last three weeks, Western Geophysical Seismic Data Processing and the 54 employees that make up Crew 787, have called the until-recently vacant building at 1842 Balmorhea Highway, home base.

The crew, the majority of which were hired recently in Pecos, is involved in mapping the oil and gas deposits between Mentone and Kermit in Loving and Winkler counties -- about 210 square miles -- and expects to be working out of the former Texas Equipment Store, located next to Valley Motors, for at least four more months.

The information gathered from seismic mapping, or `specs,' is sold to oil companies to support their oil and gas exploration.

"The thing that I've learned about oil that I think is interesting is that it moves," said Assistant Party Manager Robert DeLeon. Recently stationed in Kansas, DeLeon said he witnessed old oil wells go dry because of the movement of the underground mass.

More seismic mapping was required to determine where to drill the new holes. DeLeon said he saw one oil company spend $25 million on mapping to find the shifting deposits.

DeLeon said that even though oil and gas exploration in Reeves County has been less active than surrounding areas -- because of underground oil migrations -- this could change very fast.

Morales enters guilty plea to charge

A man arrested on the east side of town earlier this year pleaded guilty on Friday to possession of cocaine, a third-degree felony.

District Judge Bob Parks sentenced Felipe Rodriguez Morales, 44, to five years in state prison, plus $251.50 court costs.

Morales was arrested at 2:15 a.m. Jan. 17 on the parking lot at 611 E. Second Street, following a search of his vehicle. Judge Parks denied a motion to suppress evidence found in the search.

Prisoner alleges injuries in suing County

A prisoner who claims he was injured while handcuffed in a county vehicle has sued Winkler County and Jay Easley for damages in federal court.

Baldo Gonzalez of Brazos County said in the petition that Easley was transporting him from South Dakota to Winkler County on a motion to revoke his probation, when the car left the road near the Crazy Horse Monument outside Rapid City, S.D. and struck a bridge.

Gonzalez said he was seated in the front seat, handcuffed but without a seat belt. He claims shock to his entire body.

He was sent back to the facility in South Dakota, and Winkler County refused him medical treatment, Gonzalez said.

He seeks $275,000 in actual damages and possible exemplary damages.

Teen held in jail denies killing woman

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Adam Davis told a TV reporter he had nothing to do with the slaying of his girlfriend's mother, Vicki Robinson, but he refused to say why the teens took the woman's minivan and money and fled Florida.

Robinson's daughter, 15-year-old Valessa, Davis and their friend Jon Whispel, both 19, face first-degree murder charges in the stabbing death of the 49-year-old real estate agent in her home last month.

They were captured in Fort Stockton on July 3 when Pecos County Sheriff's deputies shot out the tires of Robinson's minivan following a chase.

In an interview from the Pecos County Jail with Tampa's WFTS, Davis denied any of the trio was involved in the killing.

However, he and Whispel are awaiting transfer to Florida to face murder charges and Valessa, who already has been returned to the state, has been charged with murder.

Police said Robinson was injected with bleach, then stabbed to death.

``I would never do anything to hurt her mother or to hurt the family,'' Davis said during the interview. ``I'm afraid of getting found guilty and getting the death penalty or serving life in prison.''

Hillsborough Sheriff's deputies say the teens have confessed.

TAAS results are main topic for board

TAAS test results will be the topic of discussion at the regular meeting of the Balmorhea School Board, scheduled for 7 p.m., Tuesday in the Balmorhea ISD offices.

Board members will also discuss appointing Hollye Kingston to handle the calculation of effect tax rate; approve cafeteria meal prices and approve minutes of the June 9 and June 16 meetings.

The group will also discuss electrical upgrade update, summer work, AP and Pre-AP courses and board and superintendent dialogue.

In closed meeting they will discuss personnel employment, resignations, assignments, evaluation, reassignment, duties and discipline.

The group will reconvene in open session and take any action based upon discussion in closed meeting.


Alfred Huelster

Alfred Huelster, 63, died Wednesday, July 8, 1998 at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa.

Graveside services will be held at 10 a.m., Tuesday, July 14, at Balmorhea Cemetery.

He was born Aug. 10, 1934, in Balmorhea, had served in the U.S. Army, lived in Pecos since 1977, was a farmer and a Methodist.

Survivors include two sons, Kim P. Huelster of Fritzh, Tx., and Michael L. Huelster of Amarillo; one daughter, Vickie Lee Natharius of Silver City, N.M.; two sisters, Valeta Mae Hulsey of Homeland, Calif., and Gladys Rose Hunter of Midland; and two grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Cruz Ramirez

Funeral arrangements are incomplete for Cruz Ramirez, 88, of Pecos, who died Sunday, July 12, 1998 at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa.

Martinez Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Natalie Ryan

Natalie C. Ryan, 66, died Sunday, July 5, 1998, at Issaquah Care Center, in Issaquah, Wash.

A memorial service is scheduled for Thursday, July 30 in Seaside, Ore.

She was born April 24, 1931, in Seaside, Ore., graduated and married in Seaside.

Survivors include three sons, Pat Ryan of Sandy, Ore., Steve Ryan of Harrah, Okla., Pete Ryan of Yolo, Calif.; one daughter, Kimberly McKaig of Woodenville, Wash. and 10 grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorials be made to Issaquah Care Center, 805 Front Street South, Issaquah, Wash., 98027-4205.


The International

PRESIDIO, July 9, 1998 - Flags are flying at half mast over the Marfa Sector Border Patrol headquarters for the second time in less than five weeks. Local agents are mourning the deaths of two Border Patrol agents killed Tuesday in an ambush near Harlingen. A 25-year-old man killed a mother and daughter in a pre-dawn attack at their home last Tuesday, then ambushed a group of law officers hunting for him, killing the two agents and critically wounding a deputy sheriff. Susan Lynn Rodriguez, 28, of Harlingen became the first female agent slain in Border Patrol history. Also killed was 24-year-old rookie agent Ricardo Guillermo Salinas, also of Harlingen. The deaths bring to four the number of Border Patrol agents killed in the line of duty this year.

The McCamey News

McCAMEY, July 9, 1998 - Sporadic rains that moved through Texas over the July 4th weekend did little to assist firefighters with first starts, as a number of new wildfires started in Potter and Motley counties and the Big Bend country of the Trans Pecos area. Two new wildfires caused by lightning started in Potter and Motley Counties on Sunday. Upton County residents are asked to continue doing everything possible to help fight the wildfire threat in our county. This includes not burning trash and disposing of smoking materials properly.

Iraan News

IRAAN, July 9, 1998 - The statewide economic impact of the drought for Texas agriculture could be more than $1.7 billion in losses, according to figures released today by the Texas Agricultural Extension Service. The projected direct loss of income to agricultural producers is $517 million, which will lead to a loss of another $1.2 billion in economic activity for the state, said Dr. Roland Smith of College Station, professor and associate head for the department of agricultural economics at Texas A&M.

Monahans News

MONAHANS, July 9, 1998 - Burglars have cracked the ceiling and the safe of Motor City, 2506 S. Stockton Ave., in Monahans, reports Ward County Sheriff's Deputy Jim Price. Price described the thieves as professionals who quickly peeled the safe. Price called it a "professional job." A comparable burglary was reported at the same dealership, then John Paul Jones Motors, about a decade ago, recalls the law enforcement officer. Price says he remembers no other comparable thefts.


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.
Jessica Hill, 38, was arrested at 7:37 p.m., on July 5, at the Swiss Clock Inn, for public intoxication. She was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Peter Mendoza, 29, was arrested at 1:29 p.m., on July 6, for a motion to revoke warrant. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Julian Olivas, 43, was arrested at 10:30 p.m., on July 6, at 2205 Barilla Road, for terroristic threat. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Bernardino Carrasco, 28, was arrested on July 7, on a capias instanter warrant for possession of cocaine. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
David Clemmer, 49, was arrested at 9:51 p.m., on July 8, in the 2200 block of South Eddy Street, for public intoxication. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Luis Amader, 29, was arrested at 9:57 p.m., on July 8, in the 2200 block of South Eddy Street, for public intoxication. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Edmundo Gabaldon, 38, was arrested at 3:17 a.m., on July 9, at Maxey Park on a warrant for no liability insurance. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Jeremy Renteria, 18, was arrested at 11:17 a.m., on July 9, at the Pecos Municipal Court, on a warrant for enticing a child. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Elias Sanchez, 46, was arrested at 1:09 a.m., on July 10, at the Pecos Police Department for public intoxication. He was transported to Reeves County Jail.
Valentin Rodriguez, 71, and Ester Marquez, 38, were arrested at 2:39 a.m., on July 10, in the 200 block of Second Street, for public intoxication. They were transported to Reeves County Jail.


High Sunday 111 degrees. Low this morning 74. Forecast for tonight: A less than 20 percent chance of evening thunderstorms, otherwise becoming mostly clear. Low in the lower 70s. East wind 5-10 mph. Tuesday, partly cloudy. A 20 percent chance of thunderstorms. high around 100. Southeast wind 5-15 mph.

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