New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 16, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
and needless to say, don’t wish to go back to jail.
This past year, those officers arrested, among many others, 38 wanted or suspected criminals, for which Crime Stoppers paid out more than $3,300 in cash for the tips that led to the arrests.
Crime Stoppers President Teresa Nitschke said the selection was made by the Crime Stoppers board and its two coordinators, Sheriff’s Cpl. Tim Kolbe, and New Braunfels Police Department Crime Analyst Libby Rinehart. Nitschke, who works in warrants, did not take part in the selection process.
“The purpose of this is to honor investigators for use of the Crime Stoppers program,” Nitschke said. “When we looked back at payouts for tips over the past year, most of them went to one area.”
Criminals, Nitschke said, often take considerable pride in their ability to hide in their community—often right in plain sight. Crime Stoppers limits that ability by offering residents an extra incentive in the form of cash for taking crooks off the streets.
Many of the skills a warrants officer requires are the same ones detectives depend upon, Nitschke said. Going after those criminals is often painstaking work requiring a lot of research, a lot of patience and, sometimes, other resources detectives use but never talk about — a network of informants.
“They have informants and connections in the community to pursue people
other officers just don’t have,” Nitschke said. “They’re investigators in their own right. A lot of people think they pick up a warrant, go knock on a door and make an arrest, but its not like that.”
Wommack is a former constable and police chief. Luna is a former detective with the sheriff’s Criminal Investigation Division. Sanchez, a former undercover narcotics detective, said he especially appreciates the recognition.
“It means these people are thinking about us and the jobs we do,” Sanchez said. “A lot of people don’t realize it, but this can be dangerous work. What’s often most dangerous is when we go in, we’re going into a person’s territory'. ITiey can be much better prepared. You have to take
special measures to be sure you’re safe.” “You don’t know what to expect," Wommack said.
Sheriff Bob Holder said warrants officers often confront weapons, drugs and even meth labs in their work. I folder said he was glad to see an often unsung part of his agency recognized for its work.
"Warrants is just another part of our organization that’s doing a fantastic job,” Holder said.
"These officers are specialists in a very specialized field. Max does an excellent job of overseeing the operation, and it should be mentioned that Teresa is his right hand. I’m blessed to have this quality of people in this agency, and I ’d hate to see any one of them leave."
In Senate, sessions not always in public view
AUSTIN (AP) — When all 31 state senators convene at the Capitol, they are not always conducting business they believe should be discussed in public.
Many times this year the senators have met as a group behind closed doors in what they call a Senate “caucus.” lite frequency of tile meetings and tile topics sometimes discussed bother at least one senator who has been an advocate for open government.
“I ani concerned that although it’s not breaking tile law, technically, I do believe it violates the spirit, clearly, on open government,” said Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio.
State law requires government meetings to be held in public if a quorum of officials is present. lawmakers, however, have said they follow their
own open meetings rules, not the Texas Open Meetings Act.
Sen. John Whitmire, who as the longest-serving member of the chamber heads the caucus meetings, said those discussions are typically about Senate work schedules and other internal matters, not legislative business.
State senators have a reputation for negotiating details of legislation in private before bills make their way to the Senate fkxir. The upper chamber has a long-standing tradition of not allowing bills to be debated in public unless the sponsor has enough support for passage.
Senators frequently gather in private groups for briefings or to work out a compromise. That happened this week when senators were briefed on a telecommunications bill.
HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE?
Have you been diagnosed with, or think you may have, high blood pressure?
lf so, you may qualify for a research study of an investigational medication to treat high blood pressure.
Qualified candidates must be at least 18 years of age.
lf you qualify for this study, you may receive at no cost to you:
V Study related physical exam and laboratory testing
V Investigational study medication or placebo (you have a I in 12 chance of receivina placebo during part of the
Eager to learn
Trey Rios, right, registers with San Antonio College representative Joe Jacques Wednesday afternoon at Smithson Valley High School. Rios said taking courses at Smithson Valley is a lot better than driving all the way to San Antonio. Ric . of the first students to take SAC classes at SVHS. Classes, held in the evenings beginning Aug. 22, will be offered in English, government, math, history, psychology and Spanish.
V Compensation tor your time and travel
Central Texas Health Research(830) 609-0900
705-A LANDA STREET • NEW BRAUNFELS
VaUne Maxwell. Omer
beat any price!
JI.OYEE PRICING EXTENDED
through August I st
ON-SITE LENDERS TODAY!
725 IH-35 South • Walnut Exit, New Braunfels
Art tor illustration purposes only. Colors may vary. 'With 10% ♦ TT&L down, WAC. 36 mo financing
Page 8A — Herald-Zeitung — Saturday, July 16, 2005
CONTINUED FROM Page 1A
Crime Stoppers says thank you to quartet of warrant officers
Comal County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Max Wommack Jr., left, and deputies Rick Sanchez and Jeffrey Adams show off their recognition plaques awarded to them Crime StoppersThursday afternoon.