Saturday, May 3, 2003

New Braunfels Herald Zeitung

Location: New Braunfels, Texas

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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 3, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas NEW BRAUNFELS SATURDAY May 3 2003 Z16 pages in sections EITUNG Vol No 146 Serving New Braunfels and Coma County since 1852 50 cents Standoff ends in flames Events shocking to neighbors school BY RON MALONEY Staff Writer Officials at Dayspring Christian School are preparing to help stu dents deal with what happened to the Mikkelsen family Friday A school official and two of Berni Mikkelsens neighbors expressed shock Friday at the events that left the 69yearold New Braunfels man in critical condition at Brooke Army Medical Center and destroyed the familys home at the end of a culde sac off Old McQueeney Road Dayspring Principal Vickie Williams said she didnt know what could have caused the dispute that led to an allnight standoff with police and Mikkelsen burning down his familys home Theres nothing I can tell you about the family Williams said Theyre a wonderful little Mikkelsens son Berni 8 is a secondgrader at Dayspring Hes a very good student His dad is at school practically every day is very devoted to that child See Above New Braunfels Police and Comal County Sheriffs Office SWAT team members carry 69yearold Bemi Mikkelsen to an await ing ambulance Left Mikkelsen was found wedged between two cars after rescue workers pried open the garage door of the buring house Above left Snipers were positioned around the house on Sable Circle during the 12hour standoff that resulted after a domestic dispute Photos by K JESSIE Man sets own home ablaze after keeping cops at bay overnight BY SEAN BOWLIN Staff Writer A 69yearold man held off police with a rifle for nearly 12 hours Fri day before burning down his house Firefighters escorted by Comal County Sheriffs office SWAT team members found Berni Mikkelsen of 46 Sable Circle a sixhome culde sac wedged between two vehicles in his garage Mikkelsen was taken to McKenna Memorial Hospital and then flown to Brooke Army Medical Center at about 11 Friday BAMC officials refused Friday to talk about Mikkelsens condition Ive been told were in a media spokesman said Local public safety officials said late Friday that Mikkelsen was in critical condition New Braunfels Chief of Police Rus sell Johnson said the standoff was precipitated when Mikkelsen struck his wife Amparo 50 during a domestic dispute Thursday night Dispatch records show officers went to the home at Last night we had a 911 hangup at the Johnson said Offi cers responded What we found out is that the wife had ran next door She had been assaulted She informed us that her child was inside the house with her husband She was Johnson said We got out here quickly and set up commu Johnson said when police arrived they talked to Mikkelsen who was holding his son Berni 8 hostage while holding a rifle to his own chin Amparo Mikkelsen persuaded her husband to release the boy to officers See HOW THE DRAMA UNFOLDED Thurs go to Bemi Mikkelsens home to answer 91 1 hangup call Friday releas es his son 8 to police am After hours of talks with NBPD negotiator Chris Snyder Mikkelsen refuses to come out cuts off negotiations Police cut power to house SWAT and crisis negotiation teams deployed kelsen sets fire to home in back bed room corted by SWAT two firemen cut garage door and pull Mikkelsen from bum ing home Mik kelsen js taken to McKenna Memorial Hospital Mik kelsen is flown to Brooke Army Medical Center in critical condition with smoke inhalation but no bums At a glance ELECTION 2003 bring yoy voter registration but you can vole Without It Etant know what district ymiflvein Call the Comal County Voters head to polls in city school elections 6205520 or the New Braurtfels City Secretai CPe at 608210Q axten fiifum ffJ tance BY RON MALONEY Staff Writer Another election cycle comes to a close today with local races to be decided in Bulverde New Braunfels and the Comal Independent School District Polling places are open from 7 to 7 Comal County Elections Coordinator Unnell Hinojosa said voters should remember to bring their voter registra tion cards The right side of the card lists a voters school district and city districts We can process you with out your voter registration card but the process is faster if you bring Hinojosa said It will facilitate the Anyone with lastminute questions about where to vote can call County Voter Regis trar Karen Sachtleben who works for Tax Assessor and Collector Sherman Krause Her office will be ppen from 7 to 7 today Her number is 6205520 New Braunfels City Secre tary Michael Resendez said his office would also be open from 7 to 7 to assist voters The telephone num ber is 6082100 extensions 211 234 or 251 NEWBRAUNFEUS On todays ballot are two city council seats and three propositions In Council District 3 Gale OHara Pospisil challenges incumbent Debbie Flume The race is a rematch of the 2000 contest Flume won In Council District 4 Valerie Hull is hoping to unseat incumbent Robert Kendrick Proposition 1 would broad en a city ordinance passed in a similar proposition in 2002 It would allow Hotel Occu pancy Tax money to be used to finance renovation or con struction of a civic center in the downtown area of New Braunfels just the existing civic center as the ordinance now reads The proposition is not tied to any specific project would not affect property taxes and does not threaten ideas to expand the existing civic cen ter or construct a new one Proposition 2 would reduce the economic development 4B sales tax by twothirds onequarter Proposition 3 would take that money and dedicate it to repair of residential streets Resendez said voters cast early ballots in the municipal election See INSIDE TV Key Code 76 e i