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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 28, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas NEW FELS 262 E YONDELL OR El PflSO TX 711903 Vol 148 No 71 SO pages in 3 sections February SUNDAY Serving Carnal County since 1852 INSIDE Watercolors Angle Banta Brown is one of many local artists with works on display throughout downtown during March The March is Watercolor Month fun starts today See Lifestyle to find out where to see watercolor works what events are planned through out the month and all about todays opening reception Smokin Local cigar aficionados are joining part of a growing trend and they are finding enjoy mutual 9A Hoops action Smithson Valley took on Austin LBJina hard fought second round playoff game Friday night at Ranger Gym See Sports for the final 10A WEATHER Springlike weather continues to be the norm for the Texas Mill Country See the weather forecast on Page 2A INDEX 2B MMMtHtl I Of I HIM if H ROBIN RCtelN Ramiro Martinez talks about a patrolman he Lte magazine incorrectly explained In Its caption that Ramiro helped train Billy Paul Speed who was shot to Martinez rubbed his eyes because he was racked with emo death at a spot near the tower In truth Martinez said he was blinded by flashbulbs On Aug Charles Whitman fired a reign of terror from the University of Texas tower Meet the man who stopped him Hero in the tower MARTINEZ IN 1966 BY CHRIS CREWS Staff Writer The first time Ramiro Martinez stood on the observation deck of the University of Texas tower was August 1956 He was a green 19yearold fresh off his parents West Texas farm I thought it was awesome I was a country bumpkin in the big city Martinez said reflecting on the panoramic view as seen through a teenagers eyes It would be 10 years before Mar tinez again stood on the observation deck and this time his perspective would be very very different On Aug Patrolman Mar tinez of the Austin Police Department shot and killed Charles Joseph Whit man as Whitman crouched in the northwest corner of the observation deck poised to rain more death from his high powered rifle on the unwit ting public below v Whitman had murdered his wife and mother before perching atop the tower and killing 14 unsuspecting and defenseless persons on the streets sidewalks and mall below Thirtyone were wounded by his bullets More than 30 years of speculation from selfstyled experts and true crime detectives have yielded no con sensus on the reason for Whitmans actions The secret of his motivation died with him Martinez actions that day ended one the nations bloodiest mass mur der sprees and placed his name at the top of the list of heroes of that tragic and dramatic piece of history The University of Texas will open the observation deck closed since 1974 later this spring and the spot light that often follows a public ROBIN Ramiro Martinez describes how he stopped Charles Whitmans killing spree from the University of Texas observation tower in 1966 tragedy is shining on Martinez once again Martinez was interviewed for an article in Esquire magazine this past month and will appear on television in an upcoming segment on NBC See Housin Probe still open in 1982 slaying Investigators reflect on nineyear effort BY Biu OCoNNBU Staff Writer Law enforcement authorities say the investigation into the murder of Sandra Kay Griffith is still open Griffith was bludgeoned shot and burned to death on April 7 1982 Her body was recovered in the smoldering rubWe of her Tlw Sandra Qrlfftth Muittor fourpart The CrimeFeb 21 The The 7 The AftermathMarch 14 the case resides inside a metal shed at the Comal County Sher iffs Office where paperwork non sits among stacks of assort ed files County and state investigators worked the Griffith mutiter from 1982 to 1991 focusing pri marily on the victims husband Larry Authorities gathered enough evidence against Griffith for a grand jury indictment but the defendants attorney shat tered their case in a 1992 murder trial A 12person jury acquitted Griffith of the murder charge in January 1992 That was a travesty to ever try mat poor said tarry Grif defense attorney Charles D Butts Sw INVESTIGATIONS goes to ity planner Amistad chooses location for abaitments BYBlLtOCONNEU Staff Writer A plan to build an 80unit apartment com plex in southwest New Braunfels ftfr low day by city officials The proposed site is a 15acre piece of land off South Water Lane and Interstate 35 near the Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol office A public hearing on die proposal was set for Tuesday at the municipal building 424 S Castell Ave Pending approval by city planning and zoning commissioners devel opers for the project said they intended to partially fund construction of Evergreen Vil las through a tax credit program run by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs We feel like weve got a good shot at it this said John Seidel a codeveloper with Amistad Affordable Housing Inc Seidel said the proposed apartment com plex would target low to medium income ten ants City planning Tuesday whether to recommend the zoning request to New Braunfels City Council The proposal will go before council at a date yet to be determined regardless of how city plan ners vote on the plan Amistad Affordable Housing received coun cils endorsement on a similar tax credit hous ing proposal this past year but the plan was passed over by the state housing agency in part because of local opposition to the project The proposed site was a 10acre tract of land behind the HEB supermarket on South Wal nut Avenue where developers had hoped to build a 159unit apartment complex City res idents who lived nearby objected to the plan at a public hearing in San Antonio Probably the most critical thing is com munity Seidel said He said he had not detected any public opposition to the proposal so far The TDHCA begins accepting early appli cations on March 12 for the 1999 Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program County considers health inspector Comal County Commissioners Court will meet at Tuesday to discuss hiring a county health inspector for the unincorpo rated areas of the county The meeting will be at the commissioners courtroom on the third floor of the court house annex on the Main Plaza in New Braunfels The state maintains a limited number health inspectors but some county officials said their workload did not allow them to cover rural areas adequately Howard Upsey looks at a concrete itob that oncflWia daughter SarKlraBtonw In Bulvflrde
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