New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 20, 1983, New Braunfels, Texas
4A New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung Sunday, February 20,1983OpinionsHerald'Zeitung
Dave Kramer, General Manager Robert Johnson, EditorJack AndersonWas woman a victim of strange cult?
Not long ago, a tragic young woman named Helena Stoeckley stepped out of the shadows to save a man from life in prison. She told my office a story that brought her nothing but grief and threats. Last month she was found dead in her hideout apartment in South Carolina.
Her statements implicated a black witchcraft cult whose members, she said, had threatened her with violence. Her story also embarrassed the authorities who may have sent the wrong man to prison.
Stoeckley was a key witness in the murder case against Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald, the Green Beret doctor who is now serving three consecutive life sentences for the 1970 murder of his wife and two young daughters at Fort Bragg, N.C.
What made Stoeckley a crucial witness in Capt. MacDonald’s case was that she had said she was a member of the cult that, she said, perpetrated the murders. This corroborated MacDonald's claim that not he, but a drug-crazed “hippie group” had killed his family and seriously injured him.
Unfornately for MacDonald, Stoeckley’s post-trial disclosures were not admitted as evidence to support the appeal of his conviction. At his trial, Stoeckley had said she couldn’t remember the events of the tragic night at Fort Bragg.
Since then, however, Stoeckley told my associate Donald Goldberg that MacDonald was telling the truth. She admitted being part of the drug-
oriented cult that committed the killings. She said the motive for the murders was that MacDonald had refused to supply illicit drugs to the group, which included soldiers at the base.
At MacDonald’s 1979 trial, Stoeckley said, “I was afraid that I was going to go to prison.” So she claimed she couldn’t remember what happened.
There was more than just fear of prison, though. “At the trial I was hit on the nose,” Stoeckley said. “My nose was broken by one of (the members of the cult). He told me the same thing I’ve been (warned) the whole time now. He said, ‘Keep your mouth shut.’”
She described the circumstances of
her attack at the hotel where she was staying during MacDonald’s trial: “I went out to the ice machine. Well, then he followed me upstairs and the next thing I know he just — he punched me in the nose and broke it.”
That wasn’t the only time Stoeckley had been intimidated by members of the cult, she said. They tracked her down last year in a shopper-center parking lot. There, she said, she was beaten up and her infant son was knocked to the ground.
South Carolina police officials say there was no evidence of foul play in Stoeckley’s death. But Prince Beasley, a former detective in Fayetteville, N.C., believes that she may have been murdered.
Beasley had known Stoeckley for Iii
years; he even picked her up with the other cult members the night after the MacDonald family killings. But Beasley lacked authority in the case, which had taken place on the military base outside of town. He held the suspects for Army investigators for nearly two hours. They never showed up, so Beasley had to let the suspects go.
Beasley says Stoeckley told him on several occasions that she was being threatened by cult members. In fact, just days before her death, she contacted him and asked him to meet her. Beasley said she sounded frightened, but he was unable to meet her.
But shortly before that, Stoeckley had managed to get a message to Beasley. She told him of another cult
member who could corroborate her story.
That member has since been located and has told Ted Gunderson, a former FBI agent in charge of the Los Angeles office, of involvement in the cult. Shown photographs that Stoeckley had identified as those of members of the drug cult, the informant confirmed the identification.
The informant also provided important new information on the activities and whereabouts of the cult members.
What is most frightening, though, is that the member of the cult was able to tell investigators where Stoeckley was hiding out. Obviously, if one member of the cult know where she was living, other members might also have known.
John L. HessState of confusion
Dan Brinkellor, the commentator, had graciously consented to explain the state of the union to his son’s class in prep school. After summing it up, he invited questions.
“Sir, you said President Reagan deserved credit for slowing inflation and cutting interest rates, but had to accept responsibility for increasing unemployment. How did he do those things?”
“Why, er...he cut taxes and ran up a record deficit.”
"But isn’t that supposed to be inflationary?”
"Not when industry is running at two-thirds of capacity. You’ve noticed that prices have turned pretty steady, except for a few things like prep school tuition.”
"But how did Reagan slow down inflation?”
"Well, hill. By his tight money policy.”
“How did he tighten money, sir?” "This is pretty technical stuff. Are you sure you want to hear it? When the Treasury borrows a lot, that makes money tight, unless the Federal Reserve creates a lot more. Reagan told the Fed not to."
"You mean the reserve is not really independent?”
"Oh, it follows the election returns, son."
"Then, sir, if money was tight, wouldn't that cause interest rates to go up instead of down?"
“They went down, didn t they?” "Yes, sir. And they told us in economics that actually the money supply has been growing right along. They’re not sure about the
measurements, but it's always been growing faster than the economy, and lately it’s been running away. Isn’t that a loose money policy?”
"To a layman, perhaps. Not according to the best expert
opinion...You in back, there.” “Teacher said real interests rates
are still very high, historically. Why is that?"
“It’s a matter of inflationary expectations. When lenders believe that prices will stabilize, they are willing to lead at lower interest.”
“Do they have a choice?”
“Apparently. And they are not sure that the country will stay the course.”
“What course is that, sir?"
“The Reagan course: further cuts in taxes and increases in military spending, accompanied by trims in the domestic budget.”
“Isn’t that what they’ve been doing?”
“Pretty much. There’s even talk of moving up the next tax cut from July to January. It's supposed to stimulate investment, and eventually produce more tax revenues and so balance the budget."
“If we've been doing that, sir, how come unemployment is up? And if industry is running at two-thirds of capacity, why do they expect it to invest more?"
“Good questions, son. Many people think it’s Japanese competition, and our failure to keep up with the technological revolution."
"You mean, if we have more labor-saving machinery, we’d have more jobs?"
“If you say so, sir. But how is it Reagan’s fault that we don’t?"
"He’s the president, isn’t he? As I said, if he gets the credit for slowing inflation and cutting interest rates, he has to accept responsibility for rising unemployment."
“But sir, how did he slow inflation and cut interest rates and raise unemployment?”
“When you finish economics, you’ll understand better. Meanwhile, I’m afraid our time is up. For all of us, this is Dan Brinkellor, wishing you all a good day.”
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A bill to eliminate radar speed traps conducteonly on interstate highways within the city limits of smaller Texas cities has been introduced in the Legislature by Rep. Bennie W. Bock II. It would affect towns with less than 15,000 population. “I think the majority of the driving public should be answerable to the Texas Highway Patrol, and not to the whims of a select few of the municipalities who oftentimes depend upon such speed traps as the sole source of revenue and sole purpose for the existence of such cities,” Bock said.
Three persons filed during the past week for places on the ballot in the three school board elections scheduled for April. Alfonso Soliz, a student at UT-Austin, filed for Place 4 in the NBISD race against Janelle Berger. Incumbent Ken Karger filed for a place on the CISD board, and Elvin Rittimann filed for re-election in Precinct I of the County Board of School Trustees.
Scales of justice Monday tipped in favor of an assistant district attorney after one commissioner vowed he would "resist a county court until we try all other methods.” Comm. John Karbach was joined by Adolph Schaefer and Fred Uecker in killing
any chance for the county to have an additional district court or a county court-at-law in the foreseeable future.
Like everything else, electrical rates are going up again — but customers of New Braunfels Utilities
have almost a year to prepare themselves for the shock. The increase will be one passed onto the customer by the Utilities, which faces another hike in its wholesale power rate from Lower Colorado River Authority. LCRA is proposing a 50 percent hike in its wholesale rate to the Utilities, effective Jan. 1,1974.
The Unicorn doubles team of Jill Hauk and Mae Beth Helm upset top-rated teams from MacArthur, Lee and Alamo Heights to win second place trophies in the junior division of the San Antonio tennis tournament last weekend.
The New Braunfels High School Unicorn varsity basketball team closed its 1972-73 campaign in winning form last week, crushing the San Marcos Rattlers 70-62 Tuesday night. The win upped the Unicorns’ district record to 8-6 and its season mark to 18-14. Senior Leroy Baerwald closed his high school career by tallying 29 points, while senior Dan McLellan added 16 more.
Three elementary school principals were reassigned at a special meeting of the New Braunfels Independent School District Board of Trustees Tuesday following the resignation of Marvin Doerr as principal of Carl Schurz School to return to a teaching position. Curt Schmidt, principal of Lamar Elementary, was named principal of Carl Schurz; William Kolodzie, principal of Seele Elementary, was assigned to Lamar; and Herbert Scholler, principal of Lone Star Elementary, was assigned to Seele.
Mrs. Elizabeth Rice Bauknight and
Ed Badouh are seeking positions on
MIAMI — A gunman fired a stream of bullets into the party of Presidentelect Franklin D. Roosevelt Wednesday, wounding Chicago Mayor Anton Cermak and five others, but Roosevelt was unhurt. Cermak, who was shot in the chest, died Thursday morning. A man who was quoted as saying, "I kill all Presidents. Kill all officers,” was arrested by police. Cermak was about 20 feet from the automobile of Roosevelt in Bay Front Park when the shots began. Startled and momentarily stunned by the firing, Roosevelt waved to the crowd,
the NBISD Board of Trustees. Mrs. Bauknight is an illustrator of children’s books and a former teacher in public night school in Austin. Badouh is an attorney and president of New Braunfels Lumber Co.
Ferdinand Simon was elected president of the congregation and the church council of the First Protestant United Church of Christ at an organizational meeting of the council Thursday. Also elected were Mrs. Carolyn Bra uck muller, vice president; Marvin Doeppenschmidt, secretary; and Chester Schwab, treasurer.
“I am all right,” as he was hurriedly driven away.
I,egal action will probably be taken by the city of New Braunfels in the near future against all those property owners who have not connected to the sewer system wherever the system is available, City Clerk A.D. Nuhn said.
H.M. Aubrey, referee in bankruptcy, gives notice that the final dividend in the estate of Landa Industries, bankrupt, will be declared by him on February 27 and that all
Dr. K.A. Grist, president of the NBISD board for the past two years, announced that he will not seek re-election to the seat he has held for the past three years. Walter Heitkamp, other member of the board whose term expires this year, has not yet announced his plans.
A plan for a complete tax reevaluation and equalization program in the New Braunfels Independent School District, to be conducted locally under the direction and with the advice of a professional tax consultant, was approved by the NBISD board of trustees Tuesday night. The plan, presented by Frank
claims that have not been filed at that time will not receive dividends.
Comal County schools will participate in a county meet in various interscholastic league contests for the first time in 15 years; the meet to be held in New Braunfels on April 8, County Superintendent A.M. Fiedler said Wednesday. A committee composed of Fiedler, G.J. Fiedler, Mrs. Ola Langendorff and Mrs. Evelyn Tout met Saturday and decided to provide the means of enabling Comal County rural schools
Wilson, member of the tax committee in the absence of Chairman Irvin Boarnet, calls for completion of the program before Feb. I, 1959, at which time tax statements for the district must be prepared for mailing.
Winter weather hit New Braunfels Tuesday and Wednesday in the form of a rare phenomenon for this area, called snow, covering the ground in town with approximately an inch and sending the temperatures down to 20 degrees Thursday morning. The Goodwin Rural High School did not hold classes Wednesday because of the hazardous condition of snow-covered county roads.
to participate in three interscholastic league contests as a start toward more extensive meets in the future.
Winners in the Herald “Buy in New Braunfels" Essay Contest were announced Thursday by a committee of judges to whom the articles had been referred for decision, lsabell Soechting, English 7, was awarded the first prize of $5 in cash for the best essay. Second and third prizes, $2.50 each, were awarded to Elmo Fischer, English 8, Dorothy Mac Ehlinger, English7,Grade ll.
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