Archer brings home national title
Water, schools top public forum
World Cup fever in Hays Co.
News-Dispatch Volume XXXVIII No. 39
Serving Western Hays County, Texas since 1982
75¢ Thursday, July 12, 2018
Settlement reached in wastewater permit fight BY EXSAR ARGUELLO
Dripping Springs agreed to reduce its proposed After a legal campaign discharge limit to 822,500 and community outcry, the gallons per day (gpd). Origicity of Dripping Springs nally, the city had submithas reached a settlement ted an application with the with affected parties that Texas Commission on Enviwill change provisions to its ronmental Quality (TCEQ) wastewater permit. to expand its wastewater Per the settlement, which treatment system to a cawas finalized last week, pacity of 995,000 gpd.
In addition, Dripping Springs will avoid discharging treated effluent into Walnut Springs or Onion Creek until its wastewater treatment system surpasses a capacity of 399,000 gpd. Currently, Dripping Springs system is operating at a capacity of 80,000 gpd. However, Ginger Faught,
Dripping Springs deputy city administrator, said the city aims to avoid discharging as much as possible. Faught cited a 2017 agreement between the city and the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) that spelled out parameters and contingencies that could allow
for possible discharge, if necessary. Dripping Springs also committed to establishing a utility commission that will work to achieve 100 percent beneficial reuse, according to a city press release. Groups that entered into the settlement agreement
Renewed focus on RR12 safety after rash of major accidents
Kyle-ites indicted in major crime ring BY MOSES LEOS III
BY EXSAR ARGUELLO Increasing safety concerns on a stretch of Ranch Road 12 between San Marcos and Dripping Springs is pushing Hays County authorities to take action. The move comes after a major crash killed five people June 19, while several others were seriously hurt in a separate multi-vehicle wreck that took place July 1. Those are two of the 568 crashes that have taken place along that stretch of RR 12 since 2013, according to Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) data. So far in 2018, 46 wrecks have occurred on the roadway, according to TxDOT. Ray Helm, Hays County Pct. 3 Constable, said he is adding several deputies along RR12 to address safety concerns on the roadway. Although the addition of deputies might be a temporary solution, Helm said he hopes this will help drivers become cognizant of their speed. “The road is fine, we just have a lot of people traveling on Ranch Road 12,” Helm said. “We have lots of dangerous roads in Hays County, but I am afraid with all the issues of speed and distracted driving, it will get worse.” In 2006, the Hays County Commissioners’ Court approved a measure to widen the RR12 from San Marcos to the
were the Save Barton Creek Association (SBCA), Protect our Water (POW), Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District (BSEACD), Hays Trinity Groundwater Conservation District (HTGCD)
Bombs burst ing in air Area residents (L-R) Dana Figer, Andrew Figer, Ashley Figer Pointer, Lucas Pointer, Patrick Figer and Katy Figer take in a red bomb bursting in midair during the Fire in the Sky Fourth of July fireworks show held at Dripping Springs Ranch Park. The show was one of a handful of July 4 events held across Hays County this Independence Day.
ARYAN CRIME RING, 5
PHOTOS BY MOSES LEOS III
PHOTO BY CARLIE PORTERFIELD
RANCH ROAD 12, 5
Left: Uncle Sam shows off his red, white and blue while participating in the annual Wimberley Fourth of July parade. Above: A patriotic reveler at the Fire in the Sky fireworks show in Dripping Springs marvels at a sparkler prior to the main event July 4 at Dripping Springs Ranch Park.
IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE?
Families who need assistance can reach out to the Hays-Caldwell Women’s Center at 512-396-HELP (4357), or at www.hcwc.org. Mano Amiga can be reached by a call or text to their hotline, 512-7666854. For information on how to get involved with Mano Amiga, follow their Facebook page at www. facebook.com/ManoAmigaSM.
lence victims that think we report to law enforcement if they come to us. We don’t. They’re adults, they report if they make that decision,” Rodriguez said. Layer the undocumented status on top of that misperception, and HCWC staff constantly have to reassure clients they will not be reported to authorities for being undocumented, she said.
“Which is not something we’ve had to prove above and beyond in the past,” Rodriguez said. “Now, it’s a point staff feel compelled to make clear. It’s definitely more of a talking point now.” Even if families with undocumented members in Hays County have not been directly affected by forced separations at the border, current events have caused residents to be more
BY EXSAR ARGUELLO
cautious of anyone they do not know, said community activist Karen Muñoz. Muñoz is the co-founder of a group called Mano Amiga that serves the immigrant communities in San Marcos and the surrounding areas, and provides educational resources for them and their families. “A lot of undocumented people are rightfully scared of institutions generally,” Muñoz said. “It’s easy to assume that agencies like the women’s center or Mano Amiga would report to police if you’re not on the inside of the group, but that’s not the case. It’s very difficult to commu-
LIVING IN FEAR, 2
Threat of losing family haunts undocumented residents In the wake of the forced separation of families along the Texas-Mexico border, groups serving undocumented residents of Hays County believe the news has left people scared and untrusting. It is hard to even guess how many Hays County residents are undocumented, said Melissa Rodriguez, director of community partnerships at the Hays-Caldwell Women’s Center (HCWC), as most organizations do not inquire about a client’s immigration status, to protect their privacy. “Just in general, there’s been a misperception among domestic vio-
Activists help with immigrant legal advice A team of three Wimberley residents are supporting undocumented residents living among them, an effort that extends to providing legal advice and help for those in the United States without proper documentation. Mary Gilroy, Mike Sullivan and Faith Hightower all share the goal of protecting those who have seeded roots in Wimberley. The initial effort came after Wimberley resident Victor Avendano-Ramirez was stopped on his way to work by Kyle Police. Avendano-Ramirez was eventually turned over to United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody. His daughter, a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipient and graduate of Wimberley High, fought to protect her father and after a long battle, Avendano was released in February 2018. The group is currently working on consulting immigrants about their rights, along with educating them on due process and understanding the legal process in the United States. “What we do is aimed at helping these people receive the legal help that they have the right to,” Gilroy said. “These people are not criminals. They are members of this commu-
Living in fear BY CARLIE PORTERFIELD
Two Kyle residents have been indicted in connection with a major 20-person crime ring that stole more than $765,000 LAWRENCE worth of heavy construction equipment over several years. An investigation into the theft ring, which BROWN involved 18 law enforcement agencies, confirmed the involvement of
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Thursday, July 12, 2018
Water, schools top public forum LAGNIAPPE BY EXSAR ARGUELLO
Water issues, school safety and education reform were topics tackled by a pair of Democratic candidates vying for state offices during a June 30 forum. The event, held at the Wimberley Community Center, featured Democratic candidate Steven Kling, who’s running against incumbent Donna Campbell (R-New Braunfels) for the State Senate 25 seat, and candidate Mike Collier, who will battle incumbent Dan Patrick in the Lt. Governor’s race. Kling, who is vying for a district that encompasses six counties, including Hays, took on the topic of Wimberley potentially striking a deal with Aqua Texas to supply sewage lines in downtown. There is overarching dissent against the water supplier in the community. “I will not take a dime from for-profit corporations because those companies always have a seat at the table and you never do,” Kling said. “Wimberley needs a community-owned system where local control can manage that system.” Kling also addressed Houston-based company Electro Purification
have a gun to have a gun,” Collier said. “We need to take sensible measures to prevent these tragedies.” State After the shooting in Democratic Santa Fe High, Patrick said candidates more guns are needed in Steven the classroom, Collier said. Kling and Mike Collier But after consulting with discussed teachers all across the state, water issues, Collier believed more guns school safety would be detrimental to and education school safety. at a June “Campus carry offends 30 forum in me,” Collier said. “Dan PatWimberley. rick called two special ses(photo sions for the bathroom bill, by Exsar Arugello) but not for the shooting in Sutherland Springs. Texans were killed in cold blood, and if this happens again, he has blood on his hands.” (EP), which submitted an lier said Texas is dealing with Despite the two candiapplication to pump 2.5 big out-of-state companies dates running for different million gallons of water coming to Texas, which pay offices, Kling and Collier from the Trinity Aquifer. The limited taxes and take profit said they are committed candidate said EP would margins back into their to raising the Texas econodevastate the economy, and pockets. my locally and state-wide the company’s concerns are In a room filled with by holding corporations only with its profit margins retired and active public accountable by paying their that would not be invested educators, the conversation taxes and reinvesting in back in the community. changed to public safety in communities. “We are running out of schools and how to prevent “People all over the state water and we all know that,” school shootings, which are looking at their congresCollier said. “We need our have been at the forefront sional districts because our individual water rights proof discussion in recent democracy is in trouble,” tected because our source months. Kling said. “I am running of water will always be an “I am a proponent of the because I know I had to do issue. Money spent on water second amendment, but we something. We don’t care conservation is money well need background checks about the odds. We are here spent.” and red flag laws that proto make Texans believe On a state-wide level, Col- hibit people who shouldn’t again.”
Living in Fear: Threat of losing family haunts immigrants Continued from pg. 1
nicate we don’t work with police.” Undocumented people living in the United States are vulnerable in ways an American-born citizen is not, Rodriguez said. “Despite a common misperception, they’re not getting all this welfare and government assistance. They’re not eligible. That’s not happening. An undoc-
umented person has more barriers in place that keeps them from getting help,” Rodriguez said. Even something as simple as applying for an apartment or opening a bank account can be a major hurdle for an undocumented person, Muñoz said. If someone with their papers runs a stop sign, they could have to pay a
fine, Muñoz said. For an undocumented person, it could mean being detained, separated from their family or possible deportation. “It’s great that people are upset about families being separated at the border, it’s important we’re upset about that,” Muñoz said. “But in Hays County and across the country,
we’re seeing families also separated because of traffic stops.” Since Mano Amiga began in February 2017, at least four Hays County residents have been detained as a result of traffic stops, she said. “If we’re only upset about the border, I don’t think we’re doing enough,” Muñoz said.
BURN BAN OFF
Recent widespread rainfall led Hays County Commissioners Tuesday to lift its burn ban for unincorporated areas. Fire Marshal Clint Browning said the rainfall made it safe for outdoor burning “for a while, at least.” Officials urge residents to take precautions if they plan to burn outdoors.
RODEO MOSEYS INTO DRIPPING SPRINGS Cowboys and cowgirls alike will take to Dripping Springs Ranch Park July 27-29 for the 7th annual Dripping Springs Fair and Rodeo. The event will feature mutton bustin’, bull and bronco riding and much more. Ticket information can be found online at www. drippingspringsfairandrodeo.com.
GET YOUR PAINT ON On July 19, the Dripping Springs Library offers homeowners a way to add some flair to their gardens and lawns with their Painting Rocks event. All supplies are provided and the event is free to the public. Register online at www.dscl.org.
GET SPACEY Teens aged 13-17 can take in one of Hollywood’s most compelling science fiction works during a screening of “2001: A Space Odyssey” at the Dripping Springs Community Library. The screening, which is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the film, will be held July 27 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Register at www.dscl.org.
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Continued from pg. 1 and several landowners in the area. All were granted affected party status by the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) for a contested case against the permit. According to a release, the Save Our Springs (SOS) Alliance, which was also an objector against the permit and deemed an affected party, did not join in the settlement. “As a result of the efforts of SBCA and the other protestants, Dripping Springs has agreed not to dump sewage into Onion Creek for the immediate future and create a Utility Commission that will help them meet their goals of wastewater re-use,” said Clark Hancock, SBCA board president in a statement. “A permit will still be issued but, if Dripping Springs stands by their commitments and the community continues to work together to protect our creeks and
aquifers, we might be able to hand down to future generations a legacy we can be proud of.” The wastewater plant project came in light of the city looking for ways to accommodate its growth. Expansion of the wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) aims to provide capacity to treat wastewater for the next decade. But residents and water entities in Hays and Travis counties were concerned about the impact of discharging treated effluent into Walnut Springs, a tributary of Onion Creek. A dye trace test conducted in 2017 found “hydrological connectivity” between Onion Creek surface water and recharge of the middle Trinity Aquifer, a source of water for area residents. According to a city press release, Dripping Springs never intended to discharge, but a permit was required through TCEQ for
Dripping Springs’ wastewater saga by the numbers
Dripping Springs Mayor Pro-Tem Bill Foulds said. “My hope is that with the contracts we have in place, as well as our willingness to compromise through
the settlement agreement process, demonstrates how serious we are about providing necessary services to our community, while remaining sensitive to our environment.” Patrick Rose, former Texas House District 45 representative and president of Corridor Title, LLC., said that, in today’s political climate, he is happy to see government work on occasion. “Those of us who have long advocated for a sustainable, environmentally sound solution to the growing wastewater needs of Dripping Springs are extremely pleased with this outcome,” Rose said. “The city’s leadership should be commended, as should the representatives of the responsible stakeholder groups who came together for this mutually beneficial settlement. Credit is due to all involved, save and except SOS.”
grants often are not aware of the constitutional rights they have, giving ICE a legup in the legal process. Part of their efforts is to keep families together during the court process and without a citizen sponsor, immigrants are often forced to sit in a detention center for long periods of time on the taxpayer’s dime. “Part of the problem is that these people are dehumanized, and that has only gotten worse in this political climate,” Gilroy said. “We need to stop creating this artificial crisis that says this country is being flooded by immigrants. Where people can legally seek asylum, they are now being detained.” On May 7, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 4, which disallowed cities to designate themselves as sanctuary cities, and forced the local entities to cooperate with immigration authorities.
The controversial bill has since fallen in legal limbo, and currently allows law enforcement to ask for immigration status at the discretion of the officer. Despite SB4, Gilroy and her team are looking to combat discriminatory policies towards immigrants in the future. “There needs to be a process where even if it takes two decades to become a citizen, these people aren’t labeled as aliens or illegals,” Gilroy said. “There should be legal status pathways in this country so these people, who live and support our communities, are not seen as criminals.” As long as the fight to protect those with constitutional rights in the United States continues, Gilroy, Sullivan and Hightower will consult with legal and immigration experts to protect those living in this country.
995,000 GALLONS PER DAY
Requested capacity Dripping Springs sought to expand its wastewater treatment plant to.
822,500 GALLONS PER DAY
Capacity agreed upon by Dripping Springs and several entities for the city’s wastewater treatment system expansion.
80,000 GALLONS PER DAY
Current operating capacity of Dripping Springs’ wastewater system.
Amount of beneficial reuse the city aims to achieve with its wastewater system expansion.
Number of entities and water districts that entered into a settlement agreement with Dripping Springs.
the expansion of wastewater infrastructure. “We said from the very outset that our plan was to maximize opportunities for beneficial re-use,”
clarity. All letters should be signed by the author and include a daytime phone number where the author can be contacted for verification. Letter writers are limited to one letter per month. Letters can be emailed to csb@ haysfreepress.com.
Undocumented: Activists help with legal advice Continued from pg. 1
nity that work hard and have families that are part of our schools.” Gilroy said undocumented residents in the United States have rights protected under the constitution. This includes
due process, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, fair treatment against discrimination and unlawful searches and seizures. Currently, law enforcement cannot prolong a
stop on the suspicion of immigration status. However, local law enforcement is forced to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) during the entities’ investigation. But Gilroy said immi-
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Thursday, July 12, 2018
Archer brings national title back to Hays Co. BY REED GRAFF
to becoming a national champion. Winning a national In just her second title in anything is hard full year of competing enough. Winning one in archery, Grace began in a sport that someone to rack up victories in started playing just under competitions. She started three years ago? Now we off 2018 with a 1st place are in rare territory, but finish in the Texas Field that is exactly what Grace Archery Association State Vasicek achieved. Championship, shooting Vasicek, 15, started her barebow with a comarchery career just two pound bow. The victory years ago, when the sport gave her a chance to comcaught her eye after she pete in the 2018 National joined the Hays CounField Archery Indoor ty 4-H Shooting Sports tournament. team. While her first few The national tourmonths in the sport were nament took place in a struggle, she continued Cincinnati, Ohio, and was to practice her craft with composed of a two-day the help of her coaches, shoot, with competitors Robert Waring and Andrea taking 60 shots a day. Perkins. Eventually the Vasicek outshot the comtechniques began to click, petition and came out and Vasicek began her trek as the 2018 NFAA Indoor
Grace Vasicek began her archery career only three years ago. Now she’s a national champion. (courtesy photo)
National Champion. Vasicek outscored the second-place finisher by 27 points. Amongst the fes-
tivities of the big win, the young archer got to meet some of her idols and enjoyed the experience of
the event all together. “The experience and people I met was amazing,” Vasicek said. “I had the privilege of being introduced to two of my archery role models, Ren Sarns and John Demmer III. I made some friends across the U.S. who I still talk too. At the end of that weekend, I placed 1st, taking the title of National Champion, a title to keep forever.” Vasicek competed again in June, where she finished fifth place overall in the 2018 National Archery Field Championships and qualified for the U.S. team trials. Vasicek came just two slots short of making the national team. However, 2018 set the bar high for
Grace and her future career, as her father, Rodney Vasicek, said following the event. “We couldn’t be more proud of her and her positive attitude,” Rodney Vasicek said. “Look for more big things to come from Grace’s archery future.” Grace has big plans as she looks toward the future. She plans to keep competing in state and national championships, as she builds on her already impressive resume. In 2019, the main goal for Vasicek is to make the United States Archery Team, and travel to Wellington, New Zealand to compete in the International Field Archery Association World Indoor Championships.
World Cup’s impact seen in Hays County BY CARLIE PORTERFIELD
PHOTOS BY JAMES NINO
Gettin’ busted at the 73rd annual Wimberley Rodeo It was a wooly situation for a young mutton buster who clung to the fur of ride they took during the opening night of the Wimberley VFW rodeo. Red, white, blue and a brahma bull or two highlighted the 73rd annual Wimberley VFW CPRA rodeo, which was held at the Chester Franklin Arena just outside of Wimberley July 5-7. Highlighting the event were performances from the Lone Star Cowgirls, famed rodeo clown Leon Spinks, and various performances by cowboys and cowgirls participating in various events.
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Despite Mexico getting knocked out and the United States not making an appearance at the FIFA World Cup, local business owners say patrons are still showing up to watch matches in Hays County. Acopon Brewing Company in Dripping Springs is one of the few Hays County soccer hotspots. Acopon plays most of the Premier League games during the season, but interest in soccer among its customers has ramped up since the World cup began in mid-June. Co-owner John McIntosh said they have had a good turnout of soccer fans at the bar for matches, even though the local favorites aren’t in the running. This year marks the first time since 1986 that the men’s United States men’s national soccer team failed to qualify for the world’s biggest sports event, and Mexico was defeated by Brazil in early July. The United States’ apathy for “the beautfiul game” is known worldwide. An ESPN sports poll showed soccer as the fourth most popular
During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, viewership reached over 3.2B people worldwide, according to a FIFA 2011 report.
team sport in the United States since 2006, when it overtook hockey. Soccer consistently ranks first in virtually every other country in Asia, Africa and Europe. During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, viewership reached over 3.2 billion people worldwide, according to a FIFA 2011 report. “The big challenge for Americans is the U.S. didn’t qualify. And then Mexico went out, that’s their default back up team,” McIntosh said. “It will be curious to see what happens for the other matches.” His favorite memory from showing the World
WORLD CUP, 6
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umpire, a Little League Baseball coach, a Master Edward Walter “Eddie” Scuba Diver and had his Oliver, age 61 of Pflugerprivate pilot’s license. ville and Eddie was an avid hunter formerly of with bow and rifle and Dripping in 2002, received the Springs, Texas Big Game Award passed for typical white tail 135 away Mon1/8 from The Thompson day, July Ranch. An avid fish2, 2018 in erman and pit master St. David’s who enjoyed cooking for Hospital family, friends and the in Round Spring Trails NeighborRock. hood National Night Out. Services were 2 p.m. He enjoyed traveling and Friday, July 6, 2018 at Phillips & Luckey Funeral was blessed to hunt in Colorado, fish in Alaska Home in Rockdale with and dive in Cozumel. Pastor David Skinner He was also a member of Journey Methodist of Citizens on Patrol for Church in Kyle, Texas officiating. Burial in the Pflugerville. Minerva Cemetery in Eddie was preceded Minerva, Texas. in death by his parents; Eddie was born father-in-law, Alfonso E. September 13, 1956 in Gomez and step-fatherSinton, Texas to Edin-law, Brent E. Caywood. ward F. and Lyndia O. Surviving are his wife (Whisenant) Oliver. He of 36 years, Rosanna was a 1974 graduate of Oliver of Pflugerville; Dripping Springs High son, Edward T. Oliver of School. On June 26, 1982 Austin; daughter, Lyndia he and Rosanna Gomez Nichole “Nikki” Farmer were married in Rockand husband Josh of dale. He recently worked Austin; two brothers, for S&P in courtesy patrol Keith Oliver of San and roadside assistance. Saba and Darral Oliver He previously worked as of Dripping Springs; a service technician for mother-in-law, Teresa AT&T, worked in oil and Caywood of Minerva; gas exploration, worked at the University of Texas sister-in-law, Maria Gomez of Minerva and two and Dover Elevator. He brothers-in-law, Alfonso was a member of DripGomez of El Paso and ping Springs United Methodist Church, Drip- Jimmy Gomez of Minerva. ping Springs Masonic Pallbearers, Jim Lodge “Rambo #426”. He Thompson, Michael Nelserved on the Dripping Springs Board of Trustees son, Edward T. Oliver, Al Gomez, Joshua Farmer, from 2000-2006. While Eddie Ibarra. working at the UniverHonorary pallbearsity of Texas, he was ers, Calvin Whittaker, a recipient of the U.T. Tom Vandiever, Jimmy Excellence Award and Gomez, Woodie Belle, Ruth Crawford Award. Eddie was a Little League Don Perryman, Willie and high school baseball Sedgewick.
Thursday, July 12, 2018
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State-Wide Advertising Network
Application has been made with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission for a Wine and Beer Retailer’s Off-Premise Permit by DBKH, LLC d.b.a. RR12 Market, to be located at 180 Spring Lake Drive, Ste. 200, Dripping Springs, Hays County, Texas. Members of said corporation are: Doreid Awad, member; Baslan Omar, member; Qais Omar, member; and Hamza Omar, member.
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Ranch Road 12: Focus on safety after rash of major accidents Continued from pg. 1
FM 32 junction near Wimberley, which was completed in 2010. The idea was to protect the environmentally sensitive area when the improvement plans were put into place and for the future, said Will Conley, chairman for the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO). Conley, who was Hays County Pct. 3 commissioner during improvements on RR 12, said he has worked to improve it
“We are determined to move forward and we planned for massive improvements when that time comes ... But until then, enforcement is a collaborative effort. The road is built and designed to function with safety in mind. Most of the accidents out there are due to negligent driving and we must be responsible drivers to avoid these tragedies.” –Will Conley, Hays County Commissioner
for over a decade, building the political capital to ensure the citizens of Hays County trust in the road’s improvements. In the future, when
funds are available, RR 12 will be equipped with a median between both lanes and the potential for lane expansions based on the current plan in
place. The median, Conley said, would help with head-on collisions. Conley said the roads’ improvement has been
designed to maximize the capacity for lane additions in the future. With time, RR12 could be home to expanded lanes, a safety median and a
regional trail that would connect Wimberley to San Marcos. “We are determined to move forward and we planned for massive improvements when that time comes,” Conley said. “But until then, enforcement is a collaborative effort. The road is built and designed to function with safety in mind. Most of the accidents out there are due to negligent driving and we must be responsible drivers to avoid these tragedies.”
Aryan Crime Ring: Two from Kyle indicted Continued from pg. 1
members and associates of criminal gangs, including the Aryan Brotherhood and Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, according to a press release. William Shawn Lawrence, 42, of Kyle, and Sonya Elayne Brown, 38, of Kyle, were indicted in June on theft of property greater than $200,000, a first-degree felony, and engaging in organized criminal activity, a first degree felony. Both were also indicated on fraudulent use or possession of identifying information of 50 or more items, also a first-degree felony. Sixteen other people, several of them from Travis County and Caldwell County, were also indicted
for their participation in the ring. Two other men were recently arrested in connection with the crimes. Spearheading the bust was San Marcos Police, which began its investigation in August 2017 when they discovered a reportedly stolen trailer while investigating a suspicious vehicle call. SMPD expanded its investigation after two more pieces of stolen equipment were recovered in September and October 2017, according to the release. That includes a Kubota excavator worth more than $50,000. The department’s subsequent investigation encompassed multiple years
“Through Detective Aubry’s persistence and hard work, a vast criminal ring has been exposed, and hundreds of thousands of dollars of equipment has been recovered.”
quantities” of methamphetamine. Several people within the crime ring were also accused of selling guns and narcotics. Kelly Bomersbach, San Marcos Police commander, said the investigation represented the “tenacity” of Detective Patrick Aubry. “Through Detective –Kelly Bomersbach, San Marcos Police commander Aubry’s persistence and hard work, a vast criminal and included a handful stealing equipment from ring has been exposed, of agencies, including the construction sites and and hundreds of thouHays County Sheriff’s Ofburglarizing buildings and sands of dollars of equipfice, Kyle Police and Buda vehicles across the state. ment has been recovered. Police. Other stolen items Detective Aubry received Authorities also idenincluded electronics, jew- invaluable support from tified “large groups of inelry, as well as firearms. area crime analysts and dividuals” responsible for The suspects worked with other law enforcement theft, storage and sale of their criminal networks agencies to complete this the stolen equipment. The to resell the stolen goods investigation,” Bomerssuspects are accused of for money or “significant bach said.
Authorities also seized five firearms from three convicted felons, according to the release. They also obtained marijuana, meth and a “large quantity” of stolen documents that contained addresses, identification numbers, credit card numbers and account numbers from unknowing victims. Brown is being held on $250,000 bond, which includes two unrelated charges, while Lawrence is being held on $350,000 bond. Both Brown and Lawrence were originally booked into the Hays County Jail in October 2017, according to Hays County records.
Keep your eyes peeled for fallen baby birds I
BY JERRY HALL
recently received a telephone call from a nice lady who had come upon a baby bird in her yard. The bird did not have enough feathers to fly and was standing in the grass, perhaps with an injured wing. The lady put the bird in a box and took it indoors. Then she called me. The advice I gave her is this: First, look around to see if you can spot a nest that the bird fell from. If you can, and if it is easily done, simply return the bird to the nest. (It is an old wife’s tale that a mother bird will ignore her chick once it has been handled by
humans.) However, if there is no nest in sight, your best bet is to place the bird in a box filled with tissues
and take it to a bird rehabilitator as quickly as possible. Be aware that some birds – crows, robins, scrub jays and owls – normally spend two to five days on the ground before they can fly. In our area, rehab experts include All Things Wild Rehabilitation of Austin, an outfit that rehabs both songbirds and mammals, including baby deer. You can reach them at 512 897-0806 or at allthingswildrehab@ gmail.com. Another possibility is Wildlife Rehabilitation, which treats birds, mammals and reptiles – call them at 512 709-6335. Good luck.
Thursday, July 12, 2018
World Cup: Impacts Hays County Continued from pg. 3
Cup at the bar is when a Belgian couple came to watch a match their national team play. Belgium ended up winning. “They had a great time,” McIntosh said. “When Belgium won, they said it was their custom to buy everyone a round. No one complained about that.” Dedicated soccer fans are not the only customers coming in to
watch matches; McIntosh said they have had in patrons who are not fans of the sport, some who are even watching soccer for the first time. “Half of what we do is explain the rules of the game to people,” he said. “People ask, and we’re happy to explain it.” McIntosh recommends watching a match at a bar or pub
for the best experience. “It’s a lot of fun. Soccer is definitely a world sport, even if it is peculiarly underrepresented in the U.S.,” he said. “When you get a good crowd in here, it’s a lot of fun. A game can change quickly, and it’s exciting.” The final match is scheduled to take place July 15 at 10 a.m.
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