Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Tuesday, October 20, 1998
Chavez gets 30 months in drug case
By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Senior Judge Lucius Bunton was near tears Monday as he
sentenced Odessa attorney Jose Antonio "Tony" Chavez to 30
months in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Chavez's investigator, Moises "Boy" Hernandez, received 21
months in prison with no fine. Both had earlier pleaded
guilty to providing relief and assistance to a drug smuggler
in connection with two loads of marijuana.
They were taken into custody, in line is Judge Bunton's
policy not to permit voluntary surrender -- despite pleas by
Chavez that he needs time to settle a surprise Internal
Revenue Service claim that he owes $14,000 in interest and
penalties, and by his attorney, Gerald Goldstein.
After sentencing, the two somber defendants turned their
valuables over to their attorneys and left the courtroom
with deputy U.S. marshals. They were booked into Winkler
County Jail in Kermit less than an hour later.
In pleading for leniency on behalf of Chavez, Goldstein
said, "This case is so far from the heartland of what was
contemplated by the sentencing commission."
He described Chavez as a "remarkably talented, selfless
individual" for whom a downward departure from the
sentencing guidelines "would not smack of favoritism, but
would be received as a just and fair recognition of someone
who has dedicated their professional life to the have-nots."
Chavez outlined his path from the southside El Paso barrio
where he was raised, through the El Paso Police Department,
college and law school, a stint as prosecutor in the Ector
County District Attorney's office and 18 years as a defense
Judge Bunton recognized the many letters he received in
"There is a lot about you I didn't know until I received
more letters in your behalf than I have ever received in
behalf of any defendant," Judge Bunton said.
"A lot are from people I never knew you helped. You hid your
light under a bushel. We couldn't see it all.
"You came through some tough times, and you came out with
your head held high. I would hope that you will do the same
thing this time, and I feel confident that you will.
"I don't know that I will live long enough to try a case
where you will represent another defendant, but if I do live
that long, I would be more than thrilled to have you
represent the defendant when you get your license restored,"
Judge Bunton said.
Chavez surrendered his license to practice law after
His sons, Brian and Adrian, continue to operate the law
firm. Both were present in the courtroom, along with
numerous family members and friends.
Chavez described the offense which he pleaded guilty to as
an honest attempt to collect money from Raul Gardea that he
was owed for representing Roseann Holmberg in 1997 and money
owed to Holmberg.
Holmberg pleaded guilty to hauling a load of marijuana for
Gardea and gave incriminating evidence that led to the
arrest of 18 people in his alleged drug-smuggling
"I don't want anybody here to think that I was out there
drug dealing with Raul Gardea," Chavez said.
Government prosecutor Jim Blankinship disputed Chavez's
claims, citing recorded telephone calls made to Gardea and
Holmberg by Chavez and Hernandez.
Both defendants asked for and received Judge Bunton's
recommendation that they serve their prison terms in a
federal "boot camp," which could result in their early
Ex-Pecos police officer injured
By JON FULBRIGHT
A former Pecos police officer now working for the Ector
County Sheriff's Department is listed in fair condition
today, after being struck by a vehicle near downtown Odessa
just before sunrise Monday.
Edmundo Trevino, Jr., was on his way home after getting off
duty when he came upon an accident at the intersection of
Dixie Boulevard and East Second Street, according to Ector
County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Ray Gladden. "One vehicle
was upside down and the other I believe was on fire," he
"Deputy Trevino got a fire extinguisher out of his personal
car and tried to extinguish the fire, then when he was
walking over to the other car he was struck by another
vehicle," Gladden said.
The car was eastbound on Second Street when it struck
Trevino. Gladden said it was still dark outside when the
accident occurred, at 6:53 a.m.
Trevino, 43, was taken to Medical Center Hospital after
suffering a broken arm and two broken legs, "one more
serious than the other," according to Gladden. He underwent
surgery Monday night at the hospital, and was listed in fair
condition this morning.
"The Odessa Police Department is investigating, but to the
best of my knowledge no charges will be filed," Gladden
Sign-up deadline Wednesday for tests
Wednesday is the deadline to register for Credit by
Examination tests scheduled for next month.
The acceleration tests will be available to students in
first through 12th grade in November. They are for students
who would like to advance a grade level or earn credits
through one exam without prior instruction.
Elementary school students will be tested throughout the day
on Nov. 10 and Nov. 11, while high school students can take
the exam at 4 p.m., on Nov. 10, 11 or Nov. 12 at the high
For high school students, credit by examination for
acceleration allows students enrolled in grades nine through
12 to be awarded credit toward high school graduation.
Students who wish to obtain credit for any class that counts
toward graduation may apply to take the examination for
acceleration. The student may not have been previously
enrolled in the class.
Application may be obtained from the student's guidance
Credit is granted to students who attain 90 percent or above
mastery on the examination for acceleration. Test will only
be administered on the scheduled testing dates.
The examination is offered once in the fall and once in the
spring semesters. A copy of the testing schedule and
application deadlines may be obtained in the counseling
For more information or to obtain an application contact any
of the school counselors at the student's school.
Early voting opens strong within county
About 140 people have already cast their ballots for the
Nov. 3 election, since early voting began Monday.
"We have had 120 vote early by personal appearance and 20 by
mail in ballots," said county clerk Dianne Florez.
Applications for ballots by mail will be accepted until 5
p.m., Oct. 27.
"If you have not received a ballot by mail and have already
sent in your application call our office," said Florez.
Early voting will also be held from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.,
Saturday, at the Reeves County Courthouse lobby area.
While there are no local candidates running county-wide in
contested races, those in Precinct 2 will decide between
David Castillo, who was unopposed in the Democratic primary
elections for Reeves County Commissioner in March, and
write-in candidate Marlow Summitt. Both are seeking to
replace two-term commissioner Dr. W.J. Bang, who did not run
All voters in Reeves County are eligible to cast ballots on
the unit road plan proposal. A `no' vote would eliminate the
current system and return to one in use prior to 1990, when
each of the four commissioners would run their own road
Voters in Pecos will cast their ballots for the 4A sales tax
proposal, which would take one-quarter cent of the city's
current 1 1/2 cent sales tax for use in economic development.
Both items have been the topic of discussion for some time
and the 4A tax plan has been debated in several recent Town
For more information call the Reeves County Clerk's office
Sign-ups start next week for conservation program
General sign-up for the next Conservation Reserve Program
(CRP) will be held during a seven week period from Oct.
26-Dec. 11, according to the Reeves-Loving County Farm
Service Agency Office.
This will be another opportunity for landowners to sign up
for a voluntary program to get financial and technical
assistance for improving their land, water and wildlife
resources. For those people who haven't tried to get into
the program, or if either your CRP contract offers were not
accepted in Sign-up 16 last fall, or you have contracts
expiring, this is the time to make new contract offers,
according to Cathy Williams, with the FSA Office.
The new, environmentally-focused CRP provides immediate
benefits to producers, ranchers and taxpayers through
reduced soil erosion, improved water quality and expanded
wildlife habitat. Under this voluntary program, landowners
enter into contracts with USDA's Commodity Credit
Corporation (CCC) to place erodible and other
environmentally-sensitive cropland in conservation practices
for 10 to 15 years. In exchange, landowners receive annual
rental payments for the land and cost share assistance for
establishing those practices.
The CCC will continue to evaluate and rank all eligible CRP
offers using an Environmental Benefits Index (EBI), which is
based on the potential environmental benefits from enrolling
the land in the CRP. The EBI is composed of six
environmental factors (wildlife habitat cover benefits,
water quality benefits, on-farm benefits of reduced erosion,
benefits enduring beyond the contract period, air quality
benefits and conservation priority areas) plus a cost factor.
Maximum CRP payments will be determined based on county
average dryland cash or cash rent equivalent rental rates
adjusted for site-specific, soil-based productivity factors.
CRP payments can include additional amount, not to exceed $5
per acre per year, as an incentive to perform certain
maintenance obligations. Cost share assistance will be
provided to establish approved cover on land enrolled in the
Interested producers and landowners should contact the
Reeves/Loving Farm Service Agency office at 1417 W. Third
St., or call 445-2616 for additional information.
In addition to the general CRP sign-up the Reeves/Loving FSA
County Office is announcing the approval and sign-up period
for an Emergency Conservation Program (ECP). Our counties
have received about $1 million dollars in ECP funding due to
the extended years of drought.
A lack of moisture, over an extended period of time, has
caused producers in Reeves and Loving counties to suffer
from the effects of severe drought conditions. Farms
experiencing severe drought conditions may be eligible for
cost-share assistance under ECP. This disaster program is
administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Farm
Service Agency, which provides cost-share assistance if the
damage is so severe that water available for livestock or
orchards and vineyards has been reduced below normal to the
extent that neither can survive with additional water.
A producer qualifying for ECP assistance may receive cost
shares not to exceed 64 percent of the cost of installing
eligible temporary measures. Cost sharing for permanent
measures is based on 50 percent of the total eligible cost.
Cost-share assistance is limited to $200,000 per person per
natural disaster. Approved practices and measures may
* installing pipelines or other facilities for livestock
* constructing and deepening wells for livestock water.
Producers who have experienced severe drought conditions
requiring outside assistance to provide supplemental
emergency livestock water may contact the local County FSA
Office Requests for assistance will be accepted at Reeves
County FSA office from Oct. 19 through Nov. 19.
To be eligible for cost shares, practices shall not be
started until a request has first been filed at the County
FSA office and an onsite inspection of the problem area has
been made by COC or its representative. COC will review the
inspection findings when considering the request for cost
High Monday 74. Low last night 56. Trace of moisture.
October rainfall .08 inch. Year-to-date rainfall 4.24
inches. Tonight, rain likely with a few thunderstorms
possible. Low 45 50. east wind 10-15 mph. Chance of rain 60
percent. Wednesday, cloudy with a 40 percent chance of rain.
High in the mid 50s. East wind 10-15 mph.
Mac McKinnon, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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Copyright 1998 by Pecos Enterprise