New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 14, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas
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VY, DECEMBER 14,2004
SPORTS SWEET WIN
Smithson Valley players and coaches savor win, begin preparing for state championship game. Page 6A
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Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Vol. 154, No. 25 14 pages, 2 sections
y V/ I MUI VV/UI ll
Details .... 1B
DEAR ABBY 3B CLASSIFIEDS 4B COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS BA TV GRIDS 3B2 killed in vehicle crash on PM 2722SUY strikes rear of car which had stopped to turn left into church drive
By Bon Maloney
A 51-year-old New Braunfels resident and her grandson were killed in an accident Sunday morning on FM 2722 — as they arrived at church.
Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace Diana Guerrero pronounced Eva
Saenz, 51, and Michael Barboza, 4, dead at the scene of the 10:25 a.m. accident, which occurred in front of the Judah Christian Center located one mile from the Texas 46 intersection.
Department of Public Safety Accident Reconstructionist Joel Machost
said both were passengers in a 2000 Saturn driven by Barboza’s mother, Joann, 21.
“She was driving northbound toward the lake when she stopped to turn left into the private drive at the Judah Christian Center," Machost said.
Barbara E. Word, 46, of New Braunfels, also northbound in a Yukon sport utility vehicle, approached from the rear, Machost said.
“ There is very limited sight distance where that entrance is," Machost said. “The driver of the
Yukon took evasive action to the right, striking the right rear of the Saturn with her left front.”
The Yukon, Machost said, is more than twice as heavy as the Saturn, and the car was heavily damaged.
See WRECK, Page 3A
Mikey Haley, 3, gives Santa a big hug.
Council wants tougher petition requirements
By Scott Mahon
The current city charter requires that a petition must be signed by at least 30 percent of the number of votes cast in the last city-wide election, but the New Braunfels City Council wants to change the requirement to equal a percentage of the city’s total registered voters.
Mayo! Adam (Lode, who sug-gested the change at Mondays council meeting, said requiring a percentage of regis
tered voters would “provide a more stable environment.” The change would be only one of almost IOO amendments and/or changes to the city’s charter that voters would vote on next May.
In November, a charter review committee submitted its final recommendations to council for updating and revising the city’s charter.
The committee’s chairman, John Lovett, said most of the changes recommended were
See COUNCIL, Page 2A
Trustees ask Reaves for customer relations ideas
By Leigh Jones
New Braunfels Independent School District trustees finally approved Superintendent Run Reaves’ fourth goal for the 2004-05 school year Monday.
Although trustees approved three other goals during previous meetings, they struggled to find a concrete measuring stick for the fourth — creating a customer friendly, service-oriented environment throughout the district.
The approved goal calls for Reaves to bring trustees a list of examples of improvements to make the district more customer friendly. With the list, Reaves and board members
will work together to discuss and develop a plan to implement the improvements.
“Right now, I’m comfortable," Reaves said. “At least this provides dialogue so we can discuss the plan and work together.”
Reaves’ performance will be judged only on the implementation of the plan, not its effectiveness — an important distinction when it comes time for his year end evaluation.
The school board will not meet again until Jail. 17, when Reaves will present several plans for achieving his goals.
One presentation, a longterm financial plan, will launch a series of budget workshops.
Superintendent Ron Reaves
BREAKFAST with SANTA
Children share their wish lists with Jolly Old Elf
By Leigh Jones
Santa Claus came to town Saturday, making several stops in New Braunfels to have breakfast with children and hear their Christmas wish lists.
At Landa I laus, parents and children were grouped around tables, enjoying sausage and waffle sticks before Santa arrived.
Joe and Tammy Ward were sitting closest to the door with Rebecca, 5, and Brandon, IO.
“Last year, Rebecca was too scared to sit on Santa’s lap,” Tammy said. “But this year, I think she’s ready.”
Rebecca, who was coloring a Christmas-themed picture, said she planned to ask the jolly Old Elf for a basketball and a I eapPad Learning System.
While the families ate, Parks and Recreation Department employees announced Santa sightings. He left the Norih Pole around 9:15 a.m. anti I tad made it to San Marcos by 9:30 a.m.
After just a few more minutes of waiting, Old Saint Nick burst through the door.
“Ho, ho, ho, Merry Christmas,” he puffed, seemingly winded from his long journey.
Santa’s greeting might not have been original, but it was effective. A collective gasp and squeals of delight greeted the mighty gift-giver.
T he Caspers, Kendal, 6, and Kayla, 8, had waited all week to present their requests.
“I want lip gloss and stuffed animals,” Kayla said.
“I want baby dolls and baby doll clothes," Kendal said.
T heir mother, Michelle, said visiting with Santa was a family holiday tradi-
DAVID INGRAM/Herald Zeitung
Above, Santa's "ho ho ho" greeting was a little much for Rebecca Ward as he entered the Landa Park Recreation Center Saturday for the "Breakfast with Santa" program. Below, Whysper Westbrook, 5, gives Santa her wish list. At the top of Whysper's list was wanting to visit the North Pole.
“This is our first time to see him this year,” she said. “T hey were really excited all week.”
While the girls discussed what else they wanted, matching watches were top of the list, Michelle said she would be happy with scrapbooking supplies in her stocking.
When Santa had made the rounds and shaken as many hands as he could, he settled down with Parks and Recreation Department employee Sherrie Reinhold to read “The Night Before Christmas.”
Brenda Westbrook and Whysper, 5,
See SANTA, Page 2A
Texas’ 34 Republican members of the Electoral College gathered at the state Capitol on Monday and formally cast their votes for Bush and Cheney.
Teen couple gives up parental rights to injured son
2004 CHEER FUND
Donations are still being
accepted for the 2004
Cheer Fund. To donate—
■ Stop by the Herald-Zeitung office at 707 Landa St. between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday or mail a check made out to the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung to Cheer Fund, New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung, 707 Landa St, New Braunfels, 78130, before Dec. 18.
rhanks to the following for their support:
■ Ronald Vaughn and Vilma Linares
■ Gary and Pamela Barr
■ Los and Lavada Caffoy
I Mary A. and Renee Altorfes
■ Mark and Connie Reininger
I Doris Kraft and Kenneth Stegall
■ Mrs. Donald S. Kennady
By Ron Maloney
The teenaged couple from New Braunfels charged when their five-month-old son was found to have life-threatening internal injuries late in 2003 gave up their parental rights in court Monday.
Assistant District Attorney Von Bunn said Associate judge Karin Bonicoro ruled Mandy Ann Gonzalez, 17, and Salvador P Leon, 18, would not have custody, visitation or any contact with the boy, who is recovering in a state foster home.
In June, Gonzalez was convicted at trial of knowingly and intentionally causing serious bodily injury to the boy. She received IO years of probation and was ordered lo treatment at a juvenile facility, where she is being taught parenting skills.
Leon was indicted, but the charges were later dropped.
Bo til parents were Canyon I Ugh School ninth graders when the boy was injured.
Gonzalez is again pregnant, but Leon is not believed to be the father of the child she is now carrying.
Bunn said Monday’s agreement
would make the state temporary managing conservator while allowing Gonzalez to become a parent — but only under strict supervision.
"Everybody waived a jury trial and we presented an agreement lo the judge,” Bunn said. “We’re going to allow her to become a parent, but she’ll be under close scrutiny. T hat baby will not be in danger.”
Gonzalez and Leon were arrested Oct. 3,2003, after sheriff ’s investigators learned their son had suffered major internal injuries.
The baby spent more than a
month in the hospital after nonaccidental blunt force trauma resulted in the severing of his colon and the surgical removal of more than IO inches of intestines.
The couple lived together in Coastal Bend Mobile I louie Park, located in the 5000 block of Farm-to-Market Road 482.
The investigation began when North Central Baptist officials contacted sheriff’s detectives — which health care providers and school officials are required by law to do in
See TEEN COUPLE, Page 3A