Friday, October 31, 2008

Bad Cop...No doughnut for you

This all seems so silly.

No, he shouldn't have taken the doughnuts. However, by the time he took the 17th doughnut do you think that maybe, just maybe, he thought it was okay?

Campus Cop Charged With Stealing Donuts
Cop lifts $30 worth of pastries

State police say an upstate New York college campus policeman was helping himself to free pastries at a local convenience store.
The Valero Nice N Easy offers free coffee to any police officer in uniform.

Sgt. Steve Brody of the Morrisville State College University Police stopped daily to buy a newspaper and pick up a free cup of coffee. He also routinely stuffed a pastry into his coat.
Brody is now accused of taking about $30 worth of pastries over at least 17 separate occasions.

Brody, 55, of Morrisville, was ticketed for petit larceny. Troopers say they have surveillance videos.

Brody and his defense attorney declined to comment. Brody remains an employee at Morrisville; school officials say the case is a personnel matter and refused further comment.

No Big bada BOOM....Yet

This just makes me feel really, really secure and confident in how our government handles its nuclear arsenal.

And some want this same government to run our health care system as well as our banks and everything else. Well, we'll see how well that will work out for us as well.

Air Force: Nuke missile silo fire went undetected
By DAN ELLIOTT: Associated Press Writer

DENVER (AP) - A fire caused $1 million worth of damage at an unmanned underground nuclear launch site last spring, but the Air Force didn't find out about it until five days later, an Air Force official said Thursday.

The May 23 fire burned itself out after an hour or two, and multiple safety systems prevented any threat of an accidental launch of the Minuteman III missile, Maj. Laurie Arellano said. She said she was not allowed to say whether the missile was armed with a nuclear warhead at the time of the fire.

Arellano said the Air Force didn't know a fire had occurred until May 28, when a repair crew went to the launch site—about 40 miles east of Cheyenne, Wyo., and 100 miles northeast of Denver—because a trouble signal indicated a wiring problem.
She said the flames never entered the launch tube where the missile stood and there was no danger of a radiation release.

The fire, blamed on a faulty battery charger, burned a box of shotgun shells, a shotgun and a shotgun case that were kept in the room, Arellano said. A shotgun is a standard security weapon at missile silos.
Arellano said the battery chargers at all U.S. missile launch site have been replaced.
She said the incident wasn't reported sooner because of the complexity of the investigation.
The damage from the fire was estimated at $1 million, including the cost of replacing damaged equipment and cleanup.

An Air Force report of the incident released Thursday found flaws in the technical orders for assembling battery charger parts, inspection procedures and modifications of the launch complex ventilation system. It was also critical of the presence of flammable materials.
Cheyenne Mayor Jack Spiker, who said he learned of the incident when contacted by a reporter Thursday, said the fire doesn't undermine his confidence in the safety of the missile operations.
"It's rare that they have an accident, and the accidents have never really, that I know of, amounted to much because of the safety devices that are built into the system," he said.

The revelation was the latest in a string of embarrassing missteps involving the nation's nuclear arsenal. In 2006, four electrical fuses for ballistic missile warheads were mistakenly shipped to Taiwan, and in 2007, a B-52 bomber was mistakenly armed with six nuclear-tipped missiles when it flew between Air Force bases in North Dakota and Louisiana.

The Air Force announced last week it was setting up a new Global Strike Command to better manage its nuclear-capable bombers and missiles.

Crazy in love

More of "I do strange things because I love you too much."

Also call me cynical but it seems too coincidental that this guy who stabbed someone (okay, allegedly *snort*) also happened to be in the car when his girlfriend drove into a lake where she died.

Man in drowning case jailed in stabbing
By Michelle Mondo - Express-News

When Concha Ramos saw that the ex-boyfriend of her deceased daughter was arrested and accused of stabbing a man in a jealous rage, she was not surprised.
She had always had doubts about John Flores, 27, who was known for his jealous nature.
Early Thursday, police arrested Flores less than an hour after an attack that sent another man to the hospital in critical condition.

Lauriano Gomez, who celebrated his 21st birthday in the hospital, was upgraded to stable condition Thursday afternoon. The attack unfolded, police said, around 1 a.m. at a home in the 100 block of Aganier Avenue after a fit of jealousy prompted Flores and two friends to break into Michele Solana's house. Once inside, Flores stabbed Gomez six times.

Charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, Flores remained jailed Thursday in lieu of $75,000 bail, officials said.

Ramos saw Flores on the news. It took her back to when Flores dated her 20-year-old daughter Crystal Marie Torres, who died under what she called suspicious circumstances.
On Jan. 21, 2007, Torres was in a car with Flores when just before 4 a.m. it was driven into Woodlawn Lake. Flores made it out of the car, but Torres drowned. The Bexar County medical examiner determined the death an accident.

But Torres' family always had questions about the accident: Who exactly was driving the car, why were there no skid marks going into the lake and why did Torres, a good swimmer, die?
Ramos said her daughter was considering leaving Flores. He was notoriously jealous, and Torres was getting sick of it.

Apparently, so was Solana, said her 16-year-old brother, Michael.
Michael Solana said he has known Flores for about nine years, and that at times it's hard to tell when Flores is telling the truth. He would often link himself to well-known gangs but no one saw proof of it, Solana said.

Attempts to reach Flores' family and the San Antonio Police late Thursday afternoon were unsuccessful.
Ramos said police told her that the case was submitted to the District Attorney's Office for review. She said she believed the case had been closed.

No one from the District Attorney's Office was available Thursday evening for comment. Ramos plans on contacting the DA's office to see if she can get her daughter's case reopened.
“I'm glad they caught him,” she said. “I want justice.”

Falling into a burning ring of fire

Wow, this is one seriously eff'ed up young man.

I certainly hope he gets some much needed help. I won't even pretend to understasnd the workings of a teenager's mind, despite having been one several million years ago. About the time the dinosaurs died.

Police say boy tried to prove love with fire
By David S. Rauf - Express-News

Fire investigators Thursday afternoon were trying to determine what a 16-year-old boy used Wednesday to start a blaze that torched a Northwest Bexar County home as a way to show devotion to his girlfriend.

The boy, whose identity was not released, admitted to igniting the fire that gutted a house in 10600 block of Shaenridge, according to a police report. Authorities believe the boy set the residence on fire as a way to show his 15-year-old girlfriend he loved her. The girlfriend apparently was jealous of a younger girl who lived in the house that was set on fire.
Exactly how and what started the fire will be determined by arson investigators collecting evidence, authorities said.

On one side of the house, a glass door was shattered, “where it appeared something had been thrown through the glass into the home,” the report said.
An off-duty San Antonio firefighter was among the first to respond to the blaze. On his way home from work, the man tried to battle the fire with a water hose until crews arrived, the report said. By the time units arrived around 11:45 a.m., they found the one-story residence engulfed in flames.

And while the device used to start the fire was still under investigation, the motive apparently is clear. As deputies began interviewing residents of the neighborhood, the mother of the boy’s girlfriend told authorities that the boy set “the fire to prove his love for her,” the report said.

Immediately after the fire, the boy tried to kill himself by swallowing a combination of rat poison and bleach.
He “wanted to kill himself or hang himself,” the report said.
The boy was detained and taken to a local hospital for a mental evaluation, where he remained on suicide watch Thursday afternoon, authorities said.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Chicken teens

Big brave kids.

Australians charged over attack on 75-year-old blind flamingo

Four Australian teenagers were charged Thursday with attacking an almost blind greater flamingo that is believed to be the oldest bird of its kind in the world, police and zoo officials said.
The flamingo's head and beak were injured and it was bleeding from an eye after the attack at Adelaide Zoo that left it in a critical condition, zoo staff said.

"The bird arrived at the zoo in 1933 and was a mature bird at that stage," a spokeswoman for the zoo told AFP. "So although we don't know it's exact age it is at least 75 years old -- much older than they grow in the wild."

The zoo's website describes the bird as "undoubtedly the oldest flamingo in the world," adding that despite its great age its quality of life was very good.
Police said four men aged between 17 and 19 were charged with aggravated ill-treatment of an animal and released on bail to appear in court at a later date.
Several people at the zoo at the time of the attack had spoken about the incident with staff and officers wanted to interview them, a spokesman said.
The elderly bird, described as unafraid of humans, had a habit of coming close to the edge of his enclosure.

Known only as Flamingo One, he was sedated after the attack and was taken to the animal hospital where his condition was reported to be improving.
"He's just an icon, he's the oldest resident of the zoo, he's just a symbol of the beauty of nature," said the zoo's chief executive Chris West.

Zoo officials said the shocking attack had left them concerned for the wellbeing of a second flamingo -- the older bird's only companion for more than 50 years.

Cleaning (out) your house

We see this up in Comal County at times as well.

Not only by cleaners but by handymen, plumbers, painters etc.
A lot of the times these things wind up in pawn shops who do not know these are stolen goods.

Maid service owners charged with 'cleaning out' clients
By Michelle Mondo - Express-News

When the Krystal Kleen Maid Service tackled a client's dirty home, they allegedly were cleaning out the client's valuables as well, county officials said.
On Tuesday, Bexar County Sheriff's Office detectives arrested Viola Gonzales, 48, and Roy Carranco, 45, co-owners of the cleaning company, after receiving a theft complaint a little more than a month ago, according to a county press release.

The couple is accused of stealing — and then selling off — jewelry from their clients' homes, the release said. The sheriff's office began investigating the pair after a homeowner called the office when jewelry was discovered missing a day after their house was cleaned.

Before the husband and wife called police, they asked Gonzales about the missing jewelry. Gonzales apparently returned one of the pieces, claiming that she and Carranco found it in the homeowner's vacuum bag, the release said.
The couple was charged with theft $1,500-$20,000 and were each released after posting a $2,500 bond.

Detectives discovered the pair has pawned hundreds of pieces of jewelry in various pawnshops throughout the city, including another necklace belonging to the victim who called in the complaint.

The victim of the theft, who asked not to be identified, said Gonzales and Carranco have been cleaning her home for about one year. She first heard of them through a referral and used the service several years ago as well.

She said the story about them finding a necklace in her vacuum cleaner made no sense and she believes the couple already sold off her other pieces of jewelry.

It's not just about the money lost, she said. Among the pieces still missing are some her husband inherited from his grandfather that have sentimental value. She said looking through the hundreds of photos of pawned, and possibly stolen, jewelry made her feel sick. She saw several wedding rings and engagement rings among the items.

"I think the community needs to be alerted and the community needs to be very careful about letting them into their homes to clean,” she said.
The cleaning service reportedly works at 50 to 60 homes in the city.
Efforts to reach the owners of the service were unsuccessful.

Officials are trying to find other theft victims. The sheriff's office asks that anyone who has hired the couple to clean a home or office during the past year and have missing items to call the sheriff's office Criminal Investigations Division at (210) 335-6070 and ask for Detective Buchanan.


Sticking to our sausage theme for this morning.

(I'm getting hungry!)

A story about making the sausages for Wurstfest.

Putting the sausage in Wurstfest

By Scott Sticker The Herald-Zeitung

The New Braunfels Smokehouse set its burners on high to get fired up for Wurstfest, one of its biggest selling events of the year.“The Smokehouse has been involved with Wurstfest since the very first year,” said Vice President and General Manager Mike Dietert.

He said the company now supplies the majority of the sausage for the 10-day festival, about 30,000 pounds, which would stretch for about 5 miles when laid out link to link. The smokehouse also provides about 10,000 pounds of turkey legs, about 8,000 pieces of bread pudding and many other types of smoked meats and treats, including their wurst kabob, which has five kinds of sausage.

Smokemaster Rocky Tay put the first batch of Wurstfest sausage, about 600 pounds, in the natural hickory smoker Tuesday.According to Tays, the smokehouse uses both pork and beef for sausage that contains about 80 percent lean meat. He said the sausage makers use recipes straight from Germany.“Our wurst actually has a bite to it,” Dietert said. “I’ve had Germans come up and tell me this is the way the old guys made it.”

Though the Smokehouse started from only 20 sausage makers 60 years ago, Dietert said the company now employs about 75 people year-round and about 120 during Wurstfest and the holiday seasons.“We’re not just some little backyard barbecue pit here,” said Dietert.The New Braunfels Smokehouse was opened by the Russell Kemble Dunbar family in 1943 as a meat storing ice plant. The Dunbar family opened a tasting room in 1952, which spurred the opening of a full-service restaurant two years later.

While the Mike Dietert and his son Brandon manage the operation, a third generation of the Dunbar family — Susan Dunbar Snyder and her husband Dudley — own the New Braunfels Smokehouse. Along with Wurstfest, Smokehouse employees are getting ready for the increase in sales during the holidays.According to Tay, 1,200 turkeys are smoked every two hours in the two weeks leading up to Thanksgiving.“You can smell the smoke from the turkey all around the neighborhood in the mornings,” he said. “It’s very pleasant for the people that live around here.”

The New Braunfels Smokehouse smokes more than 1,500,000 pounds of meat each year and delivers more than 125,000 packages to customers worldwide.Tay said in the 44 years he has worked at the smokehouse, he is still not sick of the sausage.“It smells good, it tastes good and it’s a good way to make a living,” he said.

Its sausage time!

Ahhh, I can almost smell the sausages cooking from my office.

Starting tomorrow and lasting for 10 glorious days our town's festival and "Ode to sausages and beer" starts Friday, October 31st. Eat, drink (in moderation of course) and join in the fun.

48th Wurstfest just a day away

From staff reports The Herald-Zeitung

The 48th annual Wurstfest opens at 4 p.m. Friday with the Comal Community Band preceeding the official opening ceremony at 5 p.m. in the Wursthalle.The band will kick off opening ceremonies with the “Star Spangled Banner” and the German national anthem. After this, Wurstfest President Frank Witting — the first German native to serve in that capacity — Wurstfest President-elect and New Braunfels Mayor Bruce Boyer, and Wurstfest “Grosse Opa” Hal Herbelin, officially will open Wurstfest with the traditional “Das beissen der Wurst” or “the biting of the sausage” ceremony.“This year, we will not only have the mayor from New Braunfels, but also Wolfgang Keller, the mayor from Braunfels, Germany, at the opening ceremony,” Witting said.

Following opening ceremonies, the Cloverleaf Orchestra, also in its 48th year, will play at 6 p.m. in the Wursthalle. The Litt’l Fishermen Orchestra will take the stage at 8:30 p.m.In “Das Grosse Zelt” — The Big Tent — the seven-piece Austrian band, Höhberg-Buam, known for playing all the old Bavarian and Tyrolian-style Oktoberfest songs, will perform at 6 p.m. The Alex Meixner Band, which returns for its 10th appearance at the annual sausage festival, follows at 7:30 p.m.

In “Das Kleine Zelt” — The Little Tent — master yodeler Kerry Christenson performs at 6 p.m., followed by Alpenfest at 7 p.m. and Catie Offerman and Terry Cavanaugh at 8:15 p.m.The Wurstfest carnival, which includes a ferris wheel, giant slide and carousel, also returns this year.

There is no admission to the Wurstfest grounds from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday. After that, admission costs $8 at the gate, however, children ages 12 and younger will be admitted free throughout the 10-day event. Group rates, advance discounts and special weekday promotions are available. Alcoholic drink tickets range in price from $4 to $6 each and food from the 31 vendors must be purchased with cash only, officials said.

For information, call (830) 625-9167, or visit the Web site at

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Was it Bud Lite?

More stupid crooks what would we do without them?

Man Arrested For Throwing Beer At Deputy, Fleeing

DEHLI, Calif. (CBS13) ― A Delhi man was arrested after allegedly throwing a beer can at a sheriff's deputy and sparking a high-speed pursuit.

Chris Baker, 19, pulled up next to a police vehicle early Monday morning and rolled down the driver's side window, according to the Merced County Sheriff's Department. Baker allegedly asked Deputy Delray Shelton if he wanted something to drink, then hurled an open 12-ounce can of Budweiser through his open window into the deputy's vehicle.

Baker then allegedly drove off and refused to stop when a nearby deputy gave pursuit. Baker allegedly sped through a parking lot and evaded pursuit on Hillside Avenue. As authorities searched the areas, Deputy Shelton recognized Baker walking down the 9000 block Of Rochester Avenue and confronted him. Baker allegedly resisted arrest, and Shelton used his taser to subdue him.

Baker reportedly told deputies that he wanted to be arrested after his relationship with a girlfriend ended, and found it funny that he struck the deputy with the thrown beer. Baker told deputies that he had only committed a misdemeanor and that he expected to be released in a day. He is currently being held in the Merced Jail on $30,000 bail on a felony charge of assault with a deadly weapon, battery on a peace officer and resisting arrest, and could face a felony charge of evading a peace officer.


So how do you mail them their voter registration cards?

Mrs. Ima Bum, 3rd bench form the center of the square, Main street park, Anywhere, Ohio?

Oh wait, they just let them vote right after they register in Ohio.

Judge rules Ohio homeless voters

may list park benches as addresses

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A federal judge in Ohio has ruled that counties must allow homeless voters to list park benches and other locations that aren't buildings as their addresses.

U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus also ruled that provisional ballots can't be invalidated because of poll worker errors.

Monday's ruling resolved the final two pieces of a settlement between the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless and Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner.

The coalition agreed to drop a constitutional challenge to Ohio's voter identification law until after the Nov. 4 election. In return, Brunner and the coalition agreed on procedures to verify provisional ballots across all Ohio counties.

The coalition was concerned that unequal treatment of provisional ballots would disenfranchise some voters.

No swingers allowed

No sex for you, or you, or you , and oh yeah, you.

Go get a room.

Owner of Duncanville swingers club the Cherry Pit convicted
By JON NIELSEN / The Dallas Morning News

The city of Duncanville is another step closer to shutting down a notorious swingers club after its owner's guilty verdict.
Jurors deliberated for about 45 minutes Tuesday before finding Jim Trulock guilty on 10 counts of illegally operating the club known as the Cherry Pit from his home.

Mr. Trulock had challenged the 10 municipal citations, five accusing him of operating a sexually oriented business without a permit and another five accusing him of operating a sex club. He will face a $7,500 fine for the Class C misdemeanors.
"It's indicative of a climate of intolerance in the city of Duncanville," Cherry Pit attorney Ed Klein said after the two-day trial.
He argued that his client isn't operating a business and that he is entitled to his privacy.

Mr. Klein said he planned to appeal the verdict of the six-member panel of four men and two women. The attorney said he would also seek to have the charges run concurrently, which would reduce the fine to $1,500.

Mr. Trulock, 59, and the home's co-owner, Julie M. Norris, 30, face separate criminal charges involving Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code violations and suspicion of engaging in organized crime. Court dates related to those charges are pending.
Mr. Klein also has a civil case pending against the city challenging its ordinance. It's unclear what effect Tuesday's verdict will have on those cases.

During the trial, city prosecutor Kim Lafferty called nearly a dozen Cherry Pit patrons as witnesses. They were identified through paperwork seized at the home during a police search in July. Six of those patrons chose to invoke the Fifth Amendment, refusing to answer questions on the grounds that doing so could be self-incriminating.

Those who did testify Monday and Tuesday told the jury that they paid $50 to join sex parties at the home. Mrs. Lafferty had witnesses describe the main room of the home, which included televisions playing pornographic videos.
"This is not a house that is being used as a residence," Mrs. Lafferty told the jury during closing arguments. "There aren't too many people who have a stripper pole in the middle of their living room or a bar upstairs where you have a bartender serving drinks."

Mrs. Lafferty entered into evidence the Cherry Pit's assumed name certificate registered with the Dallas County clerk that allows Mr. Trulock to do business as the Cherry Pit.
She also showed waivers that Cherry Pit patrons must sign stating they will not sue Mr. Trulock or "employees."

"If this were not a business, how can he have employees?" she asked the jury during her closing argument. "There are also rules on here that all decisions are final and he can deny access to his home.
"Those are things you see in a business, not in a home."

Two city workers who issued citations to Mr. Trulock testified that they viewed online advertisements promoting sex parties at Mr. Trulock's home.
But Mr. Klein said during closing arguments that the state's witnesses didn't present enough evidence to find his client guilty.

"They didn't bring you anything you could touch, see, smell or hear," Mr. Klein said. "With the resources the city of Duncanville has available to them, they could have brought you evidence of business activity there if they had any, but they don't."
Some of the witnesses chose to stay in the courtroom to hear Judge Kent Traylor read the jury's verdict. Several shook their heads in apparent disbelief.

Mr. Klein said he continues to believe that the ordinance and the jury's verdict are targeting Mr. Trulock and Mrs. Norris. Last November the City Council passed an ordinance restricting where sexually oriented businesses could operate.
"Duncanville's motto is 'the perfect blend of family, community and business,' and Mr. Trulock just doesn't fit in," Mr. Klein said in his closing argument. "They designed an ordinance around him to try to run him out of town."

Let's steal some shit to rob some shit

Plot foiled.

Mugshots of the two perps.

Police say shoplifting suspects planned robbery
By Zeke MacCormack - Express-News

Kerrville police announced Tuesday that two men arrested on shoplifting charges at the Wal-Mart there last weekend allegedly intended to use the loot — which included ski masks, black shirts and air pistols — to rob a supermarket that night.

Police Sgt. Drew Hufstedler said Wal-Mart security personnel apprehended Gregory Shupe, 20, and Jose A. Flores, 17, about 7:15 p.m. on Friday. Hufstedler said Flores told investigators of a plan to hold up the Super S. Food Store upon leaving the Wal-Mart.

A third man associated with Shupe and Flores was not charged but corroborated Flores' account, Hufstedler said.

Both suspects were charged with theft and conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, and were jailed in lieu of $10,000 bail. A Kerr County Jail official said Tuesday that Flores was released Saturday on bond, and said Shupe remained in custody there.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

They know how to have fun down-under

I'd run up and down the street too in my underwear if I had exploding firecrackers strapped to my head.

It would not be a pretty sight.

Underwear-clad man ignites fireworks

MOUNT ISA, Australia (UPI) -- Authorities in Mount Isa, Australia, said a man was arrested after he allegedly ran down the street in his underwear with firecrackers strapped to his head.

Mount Isa Superintendent Les Hopkins said the 22-year-old man allegedly ran up and down Camooweal Street in the city center wearing only his underwear and a bicycle helmet with detonating firecrackers bound to it, The (Brisbane, Australia) Courier-Mail reported Monday.

"He was running close to one of our main roads, where the big road trains travel," Hopkins said. "It could have been quite tragic."

The man was charged with possession of fireworks and being a public nuisance. He was released after posting bail.

Stay out!

MPO keep your money grubbing hands to yourself and stay out of Comal County.

Its bad enough you have screwed up Northern Bexar County with your lack of reasonable planning and your failure to listen to community concerns as you try to shove your plans and only your plans down our throats.

Transportation authority making cities nervous
By Patrick Driscoll - Express-News

New Braunfels, Seguin, Boerne and other fast-growing pockets north of San Antonio are becoming too big to be without a transportation-planning umbrella to guide how federal dollars are spent, officials say.
But many residents in those communities nervously eye San Antonio's Metropolitan Planning Organization as a 500-pound gorilla looking to expand its territory. The agency's eagerness to toll new highway lanes doesn't help.

“It scares Comal County to death,” New Braunfels Mayor Bruce Boyer told the San Antonio planning board Monday.
Boyer and Comal County Judge Danny Scheel, who also spoke, have ruled out tolling as a way to pay for road lanes.
They said they haven't had time to reach any decisions on starting up a federal planning process.
“We don't have enough information yet,” Boyer said.

MPO Director Sid Martinez said federal regulations indicate that the agency's jurisdiction — which covers Bexar County, Selma, Schertz and Cibolo — should already include an urbanizing Hill Country swath stretching from Boerne to Seguin.
Growth projections for the next quarter century show enough population density to bring in all of Comal and Guadalupe counties now, he said.

At the very least, New Braunfels could be forced to form its own MPO after 2010 census results are released, Martinez said. But federal rules discourage the creation of adjacent planning groups, which means Hill Country areas could be thrust into San Antonio's planning orbit anyway.
“It's difficult to allow two MPOs in this region,” he said.

But for now, not wanting to push those communities into San Antonio's MPO, the board voted 10-2 to ask them to join.
“It's important to have you here to help us,” said San Antonio City Councilwoman Diane Cibrian, who sits on the board.

Voting against the measure were Bexar County Commissioner Tommy Adkisson and state Rep. David Leibowitz, D-San Antonio, who are critical of toll roads and the board's inclusion of non-elected members.
“This MPO can cram down more garbage in the throat of the community than you can imagine,” Adkisson told the New Braunfels mayor. “We do not want to consume you.”

I hate crime, is that a hate crime?

That's good news.

But in all actuality all crime is a hate crime, no?

Hate crimes down in S.A., but some categories see rise
By Jeorge Zarazua - Express-News

Hate crimes in San Antonio decreased last year, despite an upward trend in crimes targeting gays and people of different ethnicity, according to federal statistics released Monday.
San Antonio's figures were in line with the rest of the nation, which also saw a slight decline overall, but an increase in those two categories: sexual orientation and ethnicity.

The FBI reported more than 7,600 hate crime incidents last year, down about 1 percent from 2006. The decline was driven by decreases in crimes motivated by race and religion.
But crimes due to prejudice against sexual orientation, the third-largest category, increased about 6 percent, the report found. And crimes targeting people because of their ethnicity rose 2.3 percent.

In San Antonio, crimes due to ethnic bias increased to five last year from four in 2006, the report said. The number of crimes against gays remained unchanged at nine last year, but that figure is unusually high compared with previous years. In both 2004 and 2005, the city only reported a handful of attacks against gays.

Paul Scott, executive director of Equality Texas Foundation, an Austin-based equal rights group, said because of limited information available on hate crimes on a statewide level, it's unknown what is driving the increase of attacks on gays being reported.

Scott said he doesn't know if it's because of more aggression toward gays or if more people are willing to come forward and report their attacks.
“This is the issue that we have in trying to put together relevant information on what is happening,” he said, adding his organization has been advocating for a better James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Act, one that clarifies both reporting and enforcement procedures.

The FBI doesn't attempt to interpret increases in its Hate Crimes Statistic 2007 report, nor does it compare data from one year to the next because the number of law enforcement agencies participating in the annual count varies from year to year. More agencies contributed to the 2007 report than the 2006 report.

The data released Monday is consistent with previous years. Racial bias remained the most common motive in the United States, accounting for more than half of all reported hate crimes. Blacks, Jews and gays were the most frequent victims of hate crimes, the report found.
In San Antonio, the number of racially driven crimes dropped to eight last year from 13 in 2006. And there were no reported religious hate crimes last year.

Nationwide, more than a third of all hate crime incidents were categorized as vandalism or property destruction. Intimidation was the second-most common hate crime, followed by simple assault.

You will be found

Go get'im Lt. O'Conner!

Was this in Guadalupe or Comal County?

Ahhh, Google maps says Comal County.

No one hurt in bank robbery

By Mark Koopmans The Herald-Zeitung

GARDEN RIDGE — No one was injured Monday during an early morning bank robbery.The incident, which police say involved a lone suspect who ran from the scene, took place at the American Bank of Texas branch, 19501 Farm-to-Market 3009 in Garden Ridge.

“What appears to be a white male wearing a disguise entered the bank and approached the clerk at about 8:20 a.m.,” said Garden Ridge Police Det. Donna O’Conner. “He then displayed a note and a handgun before leaving with an undisclosed amount of money.”

O’Conner said the clerk involved “acted very appropriately.”The suspect is described as being a short, white man possibly in his early 20s, O’Conner said.“We have a couple of leads that we are following up with as well as some evidence that was collected from the scene,” she said. “We will continue to work with FBI agents from the San Antonio office to resolve this case as quickly as possible.”

Monday, October 27, 2008

OMFG!! Are they Crazy??

I'm sorry for the family but this is just utterly crazy.

I don't care that there is a supervising "certified instructor" there don't ya think letting an 8 year old fire an automatic Uzi submachine gun is a bit much?

BTW that so-called certified instructor was a real big help wasn't he?

Boy, 8, killed in Mass. gun show accident

WESTFIELD, Mass. (AP) - An 8-year-old boy died after accidentally shooting himself in the head while firing an Uzi submachine gun under adult supervision at a gun fair.

The boy lost control of the weapon while firing it Sunday at the Machine Gun Shoot and Firearms Expo at the Westfield Sportsman's Club, police Lt. Lawrence Vallierpratte said.
Police said the boy, Christopher Bizilj (Bah-SEAL) of Ashford, Conn., was with a certified instructor and called the death a "self-inflicted accidental shooting."

As the boy fired the Uzi, "the front end of the weapon went up with the backfire and he ended up receiving a round in his head," police Lt. Hipolito Nunez said. The boy later died at a hospital.
The boy's father and older brother were also there at the time, a gun club member and school official said. Francis Mitchell, a longtime member and trustee of the club, said he saw the boy's father supporting his son from behind after the shooting.

Although the death appears to be an accident, officials were investigating.

It is legal in Massachusetts for children to fire a weapon if they have permission from a parent or legal guardian and are supervised by a properly certified and licensed instructor, Lt. Hipolito Nunez said. The name of the instructor helping the boy was not released.

The event ran in conjunction with C.O.P Firearms and Training
"It's all legal & fun—No permits or licenses required!!!!" reads the ad, posted on the club's Web site.
Messages left on answering machines for the club and the C.O.P. group were not returned Monday.

Here's a novel approach to making sure you win future elections.

Jail your potential opponents.

Venezuela's Chavez wants to jail rival

CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez threatened on Saturday to imprison his main political rival, intensifying a campaign against a man he calls a crime boss just a month before he faces tough regional elections.

Opposition leader Manuel Rosales, who lost to Chavez in the 2006 presidential vote, is governor of the oil producing state of Zulia and is running for mayor of its capital Maracaibo.
"I am determined to put Manuel Rosales behind bars. A swine like that has to be in prison," Chavez said.

Chavez railed against Rosales at a gathering of businessmen in Zulia, urging the audience to vote against his rival for allegedly plotting to assassinate him, running crime gangs and illegally acquiring cattle ranches.

Chavez provided no specific evidence for the charges against the main leader of a fragmented opposition who has solid support in the oil-producing west of the OPEC nation.

Human rights groups say Chavez has increasingly exerted control over branches of power such as the judiciary and become intolerant of critics in almost a decade in power.

The former soldier typically takes to the offensive to stem a rise in support for potential rivals.
Chavez has been campaigning vigorously for his candidates in gubernatorial and mayoral races in the November 23 election but may lose some key posts as Venezuelans worry about crime, inflation and poor public services, pollsters say.

Chavez often makes dramatic threats in speeches without immediately carrying them out. Still, he does follow through on enough of them over time for his threats to concern the people he targets.

Oh, beehave

The killer bees are back!!

Run for your lives!

Bees kill 3 dogs, injure woman, 70
By MITRA MALEK Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

RIVIERA BEACH — Bees that had been living on the shutters of a vacant house in the Woodbine neighborhood have killed three dogs and injured a 70-year-old woman.

Nancy J. Hill stepped outside her Dorado Drive home at about 4:30 p.m. Friday to walk her two dachshunds. She made it 15 feet from the door when the bees swarmed her, then killed the 7-year-old dogs, Hill's husband Brian said.

"They were out to hurt seriously," said Brian Hill, who was stung a couple of times himself. "It wasn't a question of physical size. These guys were really powerful."
Palm Beach County Animal Control said Friday that the bees also stung two pit bills, killing one and sending the other to the hospital.

Emergency officials transported Nancy Hill to the hospital, where she remained for several hours Friday night while medical personnel removed stingers, her husband said.
Police restricted access to Dorado Drive from about 5 p.m. Friday through noon Saturday so that officials could contain the swarm. They advised residents to stay inside with their pets. At about noon, pest control workers destroyed the hive, and the street reopened.

Animal Control Capt. Dave Walesky said Friday it would take lab tests to determine whether the bees were Africanized "killer" bees.

A casualty of war?

Another gang-related casualty?

Probably, along with the drug related war between drug cartels which I believe has crossed the border from Mexico a long time ago.

Slain man's headless, handless body found
Express-News -

A man’s headless body was found beside the Guadalupe River in a rural area of Kendall County over the weekend, authorities said.

The victim, whose hands also were severed, likely was slain somewhere else, dumped at the location northeast of Boerne and covered with brush, said Matt King, chief deputy of Kendall County.

A man fishing on the riverbank Saturday afternoon saw the victim’s feet sticking out of the brush and called authorities. The victim’s head and hands have not been found.
“They attempted to hide him, but not very well,” King said.

King on Sunday did not know the victim’s identity, and an investigator with the Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office refused to release any information.

The victim, who had numerous tattoos, suffered injuries to the chest and back and likely was killed recently, authorities said. No arrests in the slaying had been made Sunday.

Another child gone

Another precious child lost.

God bless her soul.

Authorities investigate death of girl, 2

Marvin Hurst - KENS 5 Eyewitness News

Police are waiting on the results of an autopsy to determine how a 2-year-old girl with bruises died Sunday afternoon.

Child protective services is involved in the investigation.

The girl wasn't breathing when she was brought from the 2400 block of Oakhill to Children's Methodist Hospital about 4:30 p.m. Sunday. The doctors could not revive her and during their examination the medical staff noticed some bruising on the girl's body.

According to investigators, there was no severe or obvious trauma that would immediately link the death to child abuse.

The toddler was living with a guardian because her parents are both in jail.

Friday, October 24, 2008

He was all thumbs

No more hitchhiking for this guy if the reattachment doesn't work out.

Robbery suspect escapes with cash, leaves thumb

WASHINGTON (AP) - Police said a man suspected in an armed robbery at an alleged brothel in Washington's Columbia Heights neighborhood left some evidence at the scene - his thumb.

Police say a 22-year-old man and an accomplice made off with hundreds of dollars in cash in the Oct. 11 raid. According to charging documents, one of the victims took control of the suspect's silver machete and hacked off his right thumb.

About two hours after the robbery, a nine-fingered man went to an emergency room. Police caught up with him and brought the severed thumb to the hospital.

According to an arrest affidavit, a doctor told police the thumb "fits like a puzzle piece." The man was transferred to a Baltimore hospital to have it reattached.

On Tuesday, a judge ordered the Hyattsville, Md., man held without bond.

Next will it be give a Jew a shower day?

How come I don't hear anyone calling this racist?

If you can say that criticizing Obama's wealth sharing plans as being socialist racist than certainly this would fit the bill, no?

Come, hit me and see what'll happen.

Mo. students face punishment for `Hit a Jew Day'

ST. LOUIS (AP) - At least four students from a suburban St. Louis middle school face punishment for allegedly hitting Jewish classmates during what they called "Hit a Jew Day."

The incident happened last week at Parkway West Middle School in Chesterfield.
District officials said Thursday they believe that fewer than 10 children of the district's 35 Jewish students were struck.

District spokesman Paul Tandy said that in most cases, the students were hit on the back of their shoulders but one student was slapped in the face.
It began with an unofficial "Spirit Week" among sixth-graders that started harmlessly enough with a "Hug a Friend Day." Then there was "High Five Day."

Soon, though, the days moved from friendly to silly. Next there was "Hit a Tall Person Day" and, finally, "Hit a Jew Day."

District officials believe a handful of children were directly involved. Those who actually struck classmates could face suspension and required counseling, Tandy said. Others who weren't directly involved but taunted Jewish students or egged on classmates could face lesser penalties.
"There is a mix of sadness and outrage," Tandy said. "The concern is a lot of kids knew about it and they didn't take action or say anything."

Karen Aroesty, St. Louis regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, said this was more than a case of bullying. Officials from the group will meet Friday with district leaders to discuss the matter.

This stinks

How pitiful is this?

He's lucky he wasn't shot and killed by the police.

Man brandishes BB gun after stealing deodorant

DANIA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Authorities said a man used a BB gun to make his getaway after stealing deodorant from a Dania Beach supermarket on Monday afternoon.

Publix employees told Broward deputies that they saw two men shoplifting deodorant spray Monday afternoon. A manager caught up with a 23-year-old man at a store next door. When the manager asked the man to return the deodorant, authorities say he pulled what looked like a black handgun.

Assuming it was a real gun, deputies closed off a nearby apartment complex and put a school on lock down. They also called in a helicopter and dogs to help with the search. They eventually found the man, who still had the deodorant and BB gun.

The man was charged with robbery with weapon and was being held on $50,000 bail.

Life or death?

I don't know about you but biting babies hard enough to leave bite marks really doesn't sound like "playing with the baby".

Life or death?

Brownsville man found guilty in infant's death
Lynn Brezosky - Express-News

BROWNSVILLE — Jurors Thursday convicted a 43-year-old Brownsville man of capital murder in the death of his former girlfriend's infant son.
The punishment phase of the trial against Manuel Velez was to resume today. He faces life in prison or the death penalty.

The 12-member jury deliberated about six hours before deciding that Velez struck Angel Gabriel Moreno on the head with deadly force at the couple's home on Oct. 31, 2005. The child died after being taken off life support the next day — his first birthday.

Autopsy reports indicated burns, bruises, bite marks and other injuries that suggested a history of previous abuse.

Velez testified during the weeklong trial that he had tossed and bit the baby in play. He said he had threatened to report the baby's mother to authorities for child abuse.

Velez and the child's mother, 28-year-old Acela Rosalba Moreno, were indicted in January 2006 on charges of capital murder, murder and felony injury to a child.

Moreno, of Mexico, originally was charged with capital murder but pleaded guilty to injury to a child in an agreement to testify against Velez.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Seek and Ye shall find

Me? I say confront them and make them do a pee test.

But then I can be a confrontational prick at times.

Oh, and boohoo on the trust issue, kids can cause a world of problems and hurt because they are hormonal time bombs without the good sense the Lord gave them.

Dogs Sniff Scent of Drugs on Teens
Parents Invent New Ways to Discreetly Detect Their Children's Drug Use

Ali is a highly trained German shepherd that spent eight years on narcotics patrol with the New Jersey police force, hunting down drug smugglers at airports and drug dealers on inner-city streets. Post-retirement, he's working in the private sector, sniffing teenagers' bedrooms.

Police drug dogs are trained to hunt the smell of drugs. Now, parents are turning to the dogs as a discreet method of drug-testing their kids.(Gettty Images)
Ali and his handler are now working for a new company in New Jersey called Sniff Dogs.
The company, which also conducts business in Ohio, rents drug-sniffing canines to parents for $200 an hour. It was started this year by Debra Stone, who says her five trained dogs can detect heroin, cocaine, crystal meth and ecstasy.

The dogs' noses are so sensitive that they can smell a marijuana seed from up to 15 feet away and marijuana residue on clothing from drugs smoked two nights before.
One of the selling points of this service? Avoiding the kind of confrontation that comes with a drug test.

Pat Winterstein of Washington, N.J., was curious about the unusual specialty and turned to the dogs to search her teenagers' bedrooms.
"Most kids will deny it and then where do you turn?" said Winterstein, who has three children, the youngest of whom is 14. "Not knowing is worrisome. It's nice to know you can have something you can turn to."

The dogs did not find any drugs this time, but Winterstein says she'll keep doing the tests periodically, if necessary, to ensure that her children stay free of drugs.
Though critics say this approach runs the risk of breaking down the trust between parents and children, Winterstein says it offers her solace.
"As a parent you worry," she said. "My kids are great. I trust my kids, but you only can trust them so far."

Drug-sniffing dogs aren't the only measures parents are using to keep tabs on their children. There are now Global Positioning System devices that can be sewn into children's clothing to monitor how fast they're driving, and software that allows a parent to read text messages.

But some psychologists say these surveillance techniques can backfire.
"There are major repercussions for this type of intervention," said Dr. Neil Bernstein, a Washington, D.C.-based clinical psychologist and author of the book "How to Keep Your Teen Out of Trouble."
"When parents do this it erodes trust and goodwill."

Sex Offenders Round-up Texas-Style

Just went through a bit of this in Comal County.

Folks don't like it when sex offenders do not comply with their registration requirements and try to drop off the radar. i agree with Scott Henson, go with your kids if you are concerned, however these guys should be in compliance.

We didn't do it because of Halloween, we did it because they were in violation of the law.

Registered sex offenders not complying creeps folks, and me, out.

Roundup targets sex offenders
Lomi Kriel - Express-News

The two federal agents had been working for 15 hours, tracking down sex-offense suspects as part of an agencywide sweep before Halloween.
So far, the pair had netted four fugitives, but their fifth, a 24-year-old man wanted on a charge that he sexually assaulted a 16-year-old, was proving more elusive.
Charles Lowe wasn't at his grandmother's East Side home, she said, wringing her hands while standing on her neatly pruned lawn. She hadn't seen her grandson for months, and had been praying for him ever since he first ended up in prison in 2005 on an unrelated charge.
Patiently, the agents headed back across town to the home of a woman Lowe knew and where he had been recently spotted.

The two-day sweep, organized by the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force with assistance from local agencies, was planned specifically for Halloween, said Tom Smith, the supervisory deputy U.S. marshal. By Wednesday, they had arrested 24 sex-offense suspects, another 10 on unrelated warrants, and developed leads for the arrest of several more in other cities, including in Dallas where a 40-year-old man was wanted since 1989 for a charge of indecency with a child.

The majority of arrests were for sex offenders violating their registration requirements.
“There's a lot of kids that are going to be on the streets pretty soon,” said Smith, who headed the sweep. “That's the main thing. We wanted to make sure our kids are safe.”

Such sweeps are part of a nationwide law enforcement trend targeting sex-offense suspects or registered sex offenders on or before Halloween and more severely restricting their activities that night. In Maryland, for instance, sex offenders this year are required to post a bright orange pumpkin on their doors marked with the slogan: “No candy at this residence.”

In Texas, where Attorney General Greg Abbott recently called for some of the toughest sex offender reporting proposals in the country — suggesting an expansion of the state sex offender registry to include e-mail addresses and Internet screen names — there are no such pumpkins yet.
But registered sex offenders in Texas are required to turn off their porch lights and are prohibited from having any exterior decorations between 5 p.m. and 5 a.m. on Halloween, with parole, probation and police officers checking to see if they comply.

In some counties, such as McLennan County near Dallas, probation officers have taken it a step further. This is the fourth year they will order convicted sex offenders to gather in their office during prime trick-or-treating hours. That idea was floated here this year, Bexar County District Attorney Susan Reed said, but never materialized.
Some critics say those measures unnecessarily scapegoat sex offenders who already are complying with the conditions of their parole. They also point to federal statistics that show juvenile sexual assault victims know their abusers 93 percent of the time. Mostly, it's a family member or a friend. Rarely is it a stranger.

It's also unusual for a stranger to snatch a child. According to the Justice Department, of almost 800,000 missing children in a one-year period, just 115 were victims of a stereotypical kidnapping, with half of those involving sexual assault.

Calling such Halloween programs “foolishness,” Scott Henson, a criminal justice blogger, said it “mis-targets resources on a night with one of the year's highest youth crime rates, plus it increases the burdens of sex offender registration with no discernible public safety payoff.”
Writing on his site, Grits for Breakfast, he said, “Just let the kids go get some candy. ... And if you're worried about what will happen, tag along.”

Available statistics don't indicate there is any truth to the widespread perception that trick-or-treating children are at increased risk from sex offenders on Halloween.
Henson cites only one publicized Halloween sexual assault and abduction of a child — in Wisconsin in 1973, involving a man with no prior criminal record, who therefore wouldn't have raised any red flags for authorities.
In that case, Gerald Turner, who later became known as the “Halloween killer,” sexually assaulted and killed 9-year-old Lisa French after she knocked on his door while trick-or-treating.

Neither San Antonio police nor the Bexar County Sheriff's Office could recall any such Halloween-related instances here. At the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Kristen Anderson, the director of the case analysis division for sex offender tracking, said no one really tracks that information.

But from the center's collected data, Anderson found only nine nonfamily child abductions reported between Oct. 29 and Nov. 1 over a five-year period. None, she said, appeared to have any connection to Halloween.

But Anderson said law enforcement agencies nevertheless must take these proactive approaches because, “if something happens, then they're blamed for not doing anything.” The primary onus, however, remains on parents to look after their trick-or-treating children, she said.
In Bexar County, home to about 2,500 registered sex offenders, Smith, the deputy U.S. marshal, said their sweep — regardless of Halloween — was a way to spotlight the task force's new sex offender unit and also made some valuable arrests.

Jacob Lopez, for instance, charged with the sexual assault of a 7-year-old relative, was found baby-sitting his girlfriend's children. When authorities tried to arrest him, he fled to a back room, picking up one of the children “to use as a shield,” Smith said.

Meanwhile, the search for Lowe continued. After his friend's home yielded nothing, the agents tried a housing project where the man, at one point, had a girlfriend. But coming up empty, one agent, sounding a little weary just before midnight, said: “I don't think people realize how long this all takes.”
Sex-offense suspects are some of the hardest to find, Smith said, because the social stigmatization of the crimes means they tend to fall under the radar. But, referring to Lowe, he said: “We'll find him eventually. We always do.”

Another Restraining Order

Unless you don't want any sleep try keeping your teen in the house if they are determined to get out.

Or they tell you they went to stay at a friend's house and they leave there later.

Suspects in sexual assault must stay 1,200 feet from Silsbee High School

The father of a 16-year-old Silsbee High School cheerleader who is accusing three football players of sexually assaulting her said he hopes his daughter's case will shed light on what he calls a silent rape epidemic.

The father, whose name The Enterprise is withholding to protect his daughter's identity, said in a phone interview Wednesday with The Enterprise that his family has decided to speak out publicly. They will make their identities known after the case is closed, he said.
"It's somewhat her idea," he said of his daughter. "Before I went there, we talked about it."

The father said his daughter was back in school Tuesday and carrying on her normal campus routine - despite school officials urging her to keep a low profile, such as not eating in the school cafeteria. The cheerleader is going to take part in homecoming activities this weekend, he said.
"She's strong enough to get through it," he said. "She is trying her best to live her life.
"We can't put her in a shell and let her stay there."

Silsbee school officials have been tight-lipped about the case, declining to answer questions about how campus administrators have reacted to the incident, including whether they urged the girl to keep a low profile.
The district Wednesday released a statement saying that it had received a magistrate order prohibiting the three students charged in the case from going within 1,200 feet of Silsbee High School, its stadium and other facilities.

The boys also cannot attend or participate in the Silsbee High School football game Friday or other University Interscholastic League events involving Silsbee students.
The three football players were arrested Monday after the girl told police she was raped at a weekend party at a home at 324 Pinewood in the northern part of Silsbee, according to Silsbee police.
Police arrived at the home about 2:40 a.m. Saturday, according to a police affidavit.

Christian Paul Roundtree, 18, Rakeem Bolton, 17, and a 16-year-old male, whose name police have not released because he is a minor, were charged with sexually assaulting a child, according to the arrest warrant.
Roundtree, a senior, and Bolton, a junior, whose bonds were set at $100,000 apiece, were released late Monday.

Information on the status of the 16-year-old, taken to the Hardin County Juvenile Correction Center on a $100,000 bond, was not immediately available.
Attempts to contact Roundtree, Bolton and their families at their homes were unsuccessful.
Lawyer Russell Wright, who according to jail records is representing Roundtree, also could not be reached.
Sexual assault of a child is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
It is considered sexual assault when one person intentionally penetrates another person sexually without the victim's consent, according to the Texas Penal Code. It also defines a child as a victim younger than 17 who is not married to the person who commits assault.

Silsbee police said earlier this week that they were investigating whether alcohol was involved at the weekend party at the home where the assault is alleged to have happened.
Investigators have not said whether they have talked to Stacy Darlene Riley, 39, who lives at the home at 324 Pinewood Drive.

The cheerleader's father said he and his wife did not know their daughter was going to the party.
"She was not supposed to be there," he said. "She did not have permission to be there."
Nevertheless, "she knows that she didn't do anything to deserve" being raped, her father said.
"She knows she's not damaged goods," he said.
He said that in the past few days, he has heavily researched national sexual assault statistics - and what he found was shocking.
"I'm just as outraged with myself for not knowing about it," he said. "It's a horrible statistic."
According to the Family Violence Prevention Fund web site, 20 percent of American women reported they were raped or physically or sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
And that's the reported cases.

He said his daughter feels obligated to speak out in order to help prevent others from being victims.
"It's not a game by any means, but it's something we have to win," he said. "I want justice and I'm going to believe her.
"I'm not naive to believe the other side is not thinking the same thing about us," he added, referring to the families of the boys accused in the case.
He said he is aware of the interest the case has created in the small town of about 6,300 residents as well as throughout Southeast Texas.
"I read the blogs," he said. "There's people who support my daughter and some who don't."
The father said that despite the incident, the family plans to stay in Silsbee.
"I'm not afraid to keep my kids in this school district," he said. "This is my home."

Some Silsbee residents such as Paula Kiner, who has lived here for four years, wondered why parents didn't know about their children being at an early morning party.
"I can't imagine a child being out at 2 o'clock in the morning, Kiner, a 54-year-old medical transcriptionist said in an interview Wednesday. "I can't imagine any child being out under the age of 18."
"I almost cried, because I thought Silsbee was different," she added.

The Rev. Mark Davis, director of Silsbee's Youth Young Adult Fellowship Alliance, said the sexual assault allegations were shocking.
Davis, who also is pastor at Holy Temple Church of God in Christ in Silsbee, said he sees a need for more social opportunities for teens on weekends and after football games.
"In Hardin County there are no recreational facilities at this time," he said. "You need alternatives to sexual activity and all types of mischief.
"Unless we provide constructive things to do on the weekend, we are inviting mischief. If you leave it up to them, they are not always going to be very adult about what they're going to do."

Stay Away

On one hand this is a good thing.

On the other hand I am concerned it could be abused or misused against the folks these are taken against. Such as come on over honey, and pick up the kids. then the call to the police.

Mind you I believe the good of this outweighs the bad, let's just not forget the potential for abuse.

Faster action on protective orders
Brian Chasnoff - Express-News

In the wake of near-deadly episodes that some say could have been avoided, officials Wednesday announced yet another tightening of the Police Department's domestic violence policy.
Officers now are instructed to arrest anyone who violates a protective order — regardless of whether the person is at the scene when officers arrive. Police will devote “a reasonable amount of time” to looking for a suspect, and if the search fails, officers must obtain an arrest warrant immediately, Police Chief William McManus said.
“If you violate a protective order and think you can get away with it by fleeing the scene, think again,” McManus said.

Officers in the past often filed such cases with the district attorney's office, which then filed complaints in court — a process that could take days.
In one recent case, a police officer went to the home of a man who'd just violated a protective order for the third time in two weeks. Instead of arresting him, the officer told the man not to contact his ex-wife anymore.

The next day, Andres Vargas shot at his ex-wife and missed. Two days later, on Sept. 8, the convicted felon shot and seriously injured two officers who went to his house to arrest him.
At the time, Marta Pelaez, president and CEO of Family Violence Prevention Services Inc., strongly criticized the Police Department's initial failure to arrest Vargas before the shootings and bemoaned an apparent lack of urgency among officers in pursuing those who violate protective orders.

Wednesday, she expressed relief at the stricter measures.
“You wait for something so long,” Pelaez said. “You don't know how nice it is.”
Typically sought out of fear for one's safety, protective orders restrict people from a range of behaviors, including calling someone or coming within a certain distance of them. McManus said officers would treat all violations equally.
“A violation is a violation,” he said. “Those seemingly insignificant violations have the potential to lead to greater ones.”

Police union president Mike Helle said he supported the initiative, but wondered how an already overtaxed force could handle the increased responsibilities.
No additional resources will be allocated for the initiative, police spokesman Gabe Trevino said.
“Managing it is going to be the issue,” Helle said. “Who's going to do the legwork on it? You already have detectives who are strapped as it is.”
He added, “Certainly, it's one more thing you're putting on top of (the officers') shoulders. But it's work they're going to have to do, when it comes to the safety of the citizens.”

McManus already stiffened the Police Department's domestic violence policy in January 2007, requiring officers to secure arrest warrants immediately for most family violence suspects.
However, police didn't categorize all violations of protective orders — Class A misdemeanors — as instances of family violence. That disconnect was underscored last month when Vargas disregarded an order three times, threatening his ex-wife on the phone and in person, and avoided arrest before opening fire on his ex-wife and later on police.

“Obviously, (violators) are in a mode where they're going to be a danger to that individual,” Bexar County District Attorney Susan Reed said Wednesday. “I think we're going to see a positive effect from (the new policy).”

Concerned about family violence, City Manager Sheryl Sculley called Reed recently to discuss potential measures. Meanwhile, officials recorded a significant spike in violations over the past two months: Since September, police responded to 432 calls for violations of protective orders. In all of 2007, there were 257 calls, McManus said.
Sculley on Wednesday said the new policy evolved out of necessity.
“It's the culmination of too many events,” she said. “It is a growing issue.”

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

UPDATE: Another Life taken too soon


I put alcohol as a question in my original posting and I regret placing that as a question. I was not implying he was drunk, I was listing a possible reason. I see that in so many cases that I may be a bit callused to it. For that I apologize to the family and friends of Thomas Andrew Whitley.

As I stated before this is a tragedy and it continues to be a tragedy and it will always be a tragedy, regardless of what caused the accident which appears now to be excessive speed.

Perhaps young Andrew's life, the consequences of his actions, and his ultimate death will prevent other children and young adults from doing the same thing.

Again my deepest condolences to the family of this fine young man taken too soon.

Teen died so close to his home
Colin McDonald - Express-News

Thomas Andrew Whitley, 17, loved to climb mountains, play hacky sack and, like so many teens, drive his car fast.

On Tuesday night, his friends and family gathered to remember the Alamo Heights senior who was driving more than twice the speed limit when he hit the concrete wall of a drainage ditch less than a block from his Terrell Hills home at 1 a.m. Saturday.

There were no skid marks. Whitley was wearing a seat belt.Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But Texas has seen a 22 percent decrease in teenage traffic fatalities since introducing restricted drivers' licenses for new drivers in 2002 and the Teens in the Drivers Seat educational program, the Texas Transportation Institute reported this week.Department of Public Safety investigators working with Terrell Hills police determined Whitley was traveling 68 to 70 mph when his Toyota Camry went off Morningside Drive, a residential street. They concluded the cause of the accident was excessive speed, according to Police Chief Greg Whitlock.

“We don't know what happened,” said Whitley's mother, Karen Whitley. “We think he was trying to avoid a neighborhood cat or something.”On Saturday and Sunday nights, most of the Alamo Heights High School senior class gathered at the crash site, where they prayed and constructed a makeshift altar.“He had some really, really close friends,” Karen Whitley said. “I think he has more now than he realizes.”

Whitley went by his middle name of Andrew. He was excited to start a hacky sack club at his school and was one of the best at it, setting his record of bouncing the beanbag off his feet 420 times without letting it hit the ground.He recently had become an Eagle Scout after doing a landscaping project at the University of the Incarnate Word. His friends said he was laid-back and spontaneous, except when it came to planning for the project, an outdoor study area for students.

Whitley fell in love with mountains while on a Scouting trip to Mount Livermore in West Texas and came home knowing that climbing them was what he wanted to do, his mother said. Soon the family vacations were dictated by his desire to see Yellowstone and Yosemite national parks.To get in shape, he started a daily training regime, running 3 miles and doing push-ups.“It was funny. He was kind of like that pudgy kid with glasses in elementary school and then in high school was ridiculously fit,” said J.T. Looney, a close friend since first grade.More Scouting trips would take Whitley to Colorado, where he climbed nine of the state's 14,000-foot peaks with his dad and the “crew,” as members of Troop 59 call themselves. His dream was to attend college in that state so he could climb all 53 of those peaks, Karen Whitley said.

Karen Whitley said her son enjoyed driving fast. His friends agreed, saying speed was one of his signatures.“He loved the adrenaline he got from it,” Looney said. “He used to brag at school that his top speed on Morningside was 70 mph.”But for a 17-year-old, he was very grounded, his mom and friends agreed. On Friday night, he was returning home from a friend's house.Motor vehicle crashes account for more than a third of all teenage deaths in the United States, according to the CDC. Driving at night is the leading cause of teenage driving fatalities, said Bernie Fette, a Texas Transportation Institute researcher.“We conducted interviews with 7,000 teenagers and only 2 percent realize that driving at night is a risk, much less the No. 1 risk,” Fette said.

Gone for life well, until paroled in 30+ years

The end of this story?

Nah, there will be the appeals and then the writs.

Man who killed wife to spend life in prison


A Bexar County jury on Tuesday sentenced David Garza to life in prison for the 2006 asphyxiation death of his wife.

Julie Garza, 31, a mother of two children, was making plans to leave her abusive relationship with David Garza and return to her hometown in the Valley when her body was discovered in the bathtub of her Northwest Side mobile home.

David Garza was found guilty Monday.

Jurors on Tuesday heard about his three earlier felony convictions as well as his flight from San Antonio to West Texas after his wife’s slaying. He had crashed his own car and then led authorities on an almost 70-mile chase after carjacking and stabbing a man who had picked him up hitchhiking.

End of the story

I would think the jury gave her such a relatively light sentence because they weren't happy with the cops on the video.

Just a guess.

Caregiver gets five years for shaking baby
Graeme Zielinski - Express-News

After the San Antonio caregiver convicted of shaking Brenda Bonano's baby was sentenced to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine, Bonano stood and addressed Aritzaid Santiago.
“I'm not happy,” Bonano said in tearful Spanish.
She said all she had wanted from Santiago, 39, was the truth and that Tuesday was not a day of celebration for the Bonano family.

Santiago, who was found guilty Friday of causing injury in March 2006 to Nathan Bonano, then 5 months old, merely wept and sunk low as she sat in the jury box.
Nathan Bonano had to undergo emergency surgery and sustained brain and retinal damage.
The jury of eight women and four men arrived at the sentence after a marathon day Monday, when they began their deliberations at about 9 a.m. and were ordered sequestered in a hotel by Judge Pat Priest shortly after 10 p.m.

The panel reconvened Tuesday morning at about 7:45 a.m. before arriving at the sentence a little more than an hour later.
Denied an appeal bond by Priest, Santiago was handcuffed and taken into custody after Brenda Bonano addressed her. Santiago had been free on bond before her trial.

Santiago's lawyers, Jay Norton and Jeff Mulliner, spoke privately with the jury after the sentence was handed down. They said jurors told them they began their deliberations split on whether to sentence Santiago to probation or to send her to prison.
The five-year sentence, which will make Santiago eligible for parole in 2½ years, was the minimum once the jurors decided they needed to set an example for the community and have her serve time, Norton said.

Wilfredo Santiago, her husband of 21 years and father to their 3-year-old twins, was visibly shaken by the sentence when he addressed reporters. He professed his love for his wife and vowed an appeal of the conviction.
“I know that she's not responsible for what they're accusing her (of),” he said.

Brenda Bonano said the condition of her son, who is days shy of his third birthday, had improved markedly but he still undergoes therapy and must take anti-seizure medication.
She said she was unimpressed by Santiago's demeanor.
“She still says I didn't do it,” Bonano said. “But she did it.”