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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 14, 2011, New Braunfels, Texas 81 Tuesday, June 14, 2011 |    _ Police: Man punched woman on river By Daiondo Mouttrtt The Herald-Zeitung A woman was assaulted by a stranger Saturday evening in Comal County, [K)li< e said. Christopher William Whiteside, 34, of Humble, was arrested about 6:15 p.m. in the area of the 1100 block of River Road and charged with aggravated assault causes serious bodily injury, said Lt. Mark Reynolds, Comal County Sheriffs Office. He said Whiteside used a closed fist to punch a woman in the face. "It's not a girlfriend," Reynolds said. "It's just an unknown person he assaulted." Medics were called to the scene and they treated the woman, also strongly urging her to go to the hospital, Reynolds said. He said she refused. The incident happened at a campground where the woman tried to help another woman from the river, Reynolds said. He said Whiteside and the victim exchanged words and he punched her. Reynolds withheld the victim's identity due to confidentiality regulations. HOUSTON Sentencing reversal for serial killer A federal appeals court has reversed a ruling that ordered Texas to eive a condemned serial killer a new punishment trial or agree to a life sentence. The ruling Monday from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sends the case of Faryion Wardipback Associated Press to a U.S. district court for reconsideration. A federal magistrate in 2008 recommended that Wardip's death penalty be overturned because of ineffective trial defense. SAN ANGELO Warren Jeffs seeks judge's recusal Attorneys for polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs are asking for removal of the judge in his upcoming trial. The legal team for the ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints alleges that the body language of state District Judge Barbara Walther influenced jurors in past trials of sect members. REFUGIO Man dies while raping elderly woman Investigators say a man has died while in the act of raping an elderly South Texas woman. The Refugio County Sheriff's Office identifies the man as 53-year-old Isabel Chavelo Gutierrez. Sheriff's Sgt. Gary Wright says the incident happened June 2 after he rode two miles by bicycle from his home to that of his 77-year-old victim in the tiny coastal community of Tivoli. He says the 5-feet-7-inches tall, 230-to-250 pound man sneaked into the woman's house and raped her at knifepoint. During the attack, he said he wasn't feeling well, rolled over and died. GBRA: Canyon Lake in good shape BOWLING FOR A GOOD TIME DROUGHT Continued from page 1 fawning in May and June, so we're going to see a reduction in deer." ■ Statewide, the Texas AgriLife Extension Service estimated Texas farmers and ranchers already lost $1.2 billion in livestock and crop damages associated with this drought. It says they lost $3.6 billion in 2009 and $4.1 billion in 2006. Avriett said it's too soon to gauge the local damage caused by this current drought, which could get worse because temperatures are already parallel ing those recorded during the summer of 2009. What's needed is a good soaking rain, which might or might not happen. "If we could have some low depressions move in off the Gulf and dump some water here, it wouldn't be too bad," Avriett said. "The ground can soak up water only so fast. The rest is going to be runoff. But we'll take any rain we can get." Avriett said there is no good outlook for corn. "Corn is like fruit — it's done," he said. "'A little rain on the grain sorghum might help. But, overall, it's really too late for the crops." Saturday was Trophy Day, the first team award celebration for Strike Force. The day began with a bowling event at Fiesta Lanes that included athletes, supporters, and family members. This was followed by lunch, award presentations, and dancing at Buddy's Backyard. Strike Force is a bowling team of Special Olympics — Texas Area 13, that bowls year-round at Fiesta Lanes in New Braunfels. It is an independent Special Olympics team of 44 athletes, not affiliated with any other organization. For more information, contact Marilyn Senneway at [email protected] Photos by Roberto Lopez FLOOD Continued from page 1 do with causing the flooding below - even though sediment and debris from its retention pool plugged up < u I verts and sent water rushing into the neighborhood and Landa Park. "That development was at its most fragile stage when we had a very unique storm occur," Moeller said. "The drainage system wasn't yet complete. The retention pond was dug, but not fully functioning. And the improvements to State Highway 46, including storm drains and water quality ponds, weren't fully completed when we had a large storm event." Water quality controls were in place, but they aren't designed to treat big storm events, Moeller added. "So they washed out — and we had a lot of construction type gravel wind up all the way down into the wading pool," he said. While most of the watershed around the loop had retention controls in place, other factors helped contribute, Moeller said. Among them was the failure to handle the runoff from behind New Braunfels High School, where it overwhelmed culverts behind the school. Now that the West-pointe development is complete, Moeller said he doubted such an event would produce a similar result. "It would be a lot different now," he said. Moeller recommended additional erosion control measures, restructuring the drainage behind the nigh school and adjacent neighborhood, and educating the public on water quality and water quantity issues as solutions. Public Works Director Steve Ramsey has a "very preliminary" cost estimate at $360,000. Councilors Mark Good-ner, Bryan Miranda and Steven Digges all wondered which entity is now responsible for maintenance on the Westpointe retention pool - the city, developer, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality or the Edwards Aquifer Authority. Ramsey said he would look into the responsibility issue, which is outlined in the overall plan for the development. He said enforcement lies first with the TCEQ, then the EAA. "The TCEQ is the first line of defense right now," Ramsey said. "The EAA is looking at stepping up its involvement in maintenance requirements. And maybe we want to strengthen our criteria also." Panther Canyon resident Ron Reaves doubted the design of the development's retention pond will ever effectively control the velocity of water going downstream. "I agree with Jeff's recommendations," Reaves said. "I think (water) quality can be taken care of through vegetation and a filtration system. It will help a little with the velocity, but not much ... The rate of the water created most of the turmoil that day." Another resident, Dolores Schumann, said someone needed to do something about the general aesthetics of the retention pond, and the failure of its first major test. "It doesn't seem to be large enough for the area that hill is going to drain," she said. "And I'd also like to ask why New Braunfels is satisfied with such trash? The HEB center in Bulverde has a retention pond lined with white stone and looks like a park. Ours is a hole. It looks like a boil — it is so ugly. "Why don't we tell these developers what we want ... we nad better go back and see who will clean it. We knew this development was going to be hard on Landa Park, which is why we were concerned three years ago." Councilors will hear a report on the storm's impact on the Hunter Creek subdivision later this month. By Will Wright Herald-Zeitung The Guadalupe-Bianco River Authority says NBU and other utilities such as Cordillera Ranch Water Distribution System and Canyon Lake Water Supply decide when to call for local water restrictions. The GBRA has its own drought contingency plan for Canyon Reservoir, which doesn't appear threatened. Not until the reservoir's elevation level falls below 895 feet above mean sea level (msl) will the GBRA call for Stage I water restrictions. On Monday, the level was at 904 msl, 5 feet below normal, but 11 feet away from that first restriction stage. "It's still about 90 percent full, so Canyon is in pretty good shape," GBRA general manager Bill West said. The reservoir's last lowest measurement was at 892.7 msl on Sept. 8, 2009, so even if the drought persists it would take until next summer before restrictions would be called. The Guadalupe River, however, is a different story. "It has completely stopped," he said. "The gauge says we've got 6 cfs at Spring Branch, but before it gets to the lake at Rebecca Creek, it's completely dry." West said not only is the river low, it is also losing water to the Trinity Aquifer, which has yet to recuperate from the 2007-09 drought. The flow rate at San Marcos Springs is at 109 cfs (1 50 cfs is normal); at Comal Springs it's at 191 cfs (276 is normal). Flow rates downstream are better, but still way below normal levels. "The river is in bad shape, but Canyon Lake is remarkable compared to the Highland lakes, like Buchanan and Travis, which are in the 50 percent storage range," West said. "We were lucky." Last week, GBRA instituted Stage II conservation measures on its hydroelectric lakes, which include Lake Dunlap in Comal and Guadalupe counties, and Guadalupe County's Lake McQueeney, Lake Placid and Lake Nolte. Canyon isn't there yet, but could be by this time next year. "But as this drought continues Canyon will continue to fall. If we don't have good rains this winter, next summer could really be severe," West said. "We all need to do our share of being conservative with water, because this has been a cumulative thing." WATER_ Continued from page 1 On Monday, the aquifer well was at 642.7 msl, with the Guadalupe flowing at 191 cfs at Comal Springs. Stage III restrictions haven't been called since NBU's current ordinance went into effect in May 2006, Reuwer said. "It doesn't look like we're going to be able to avoid calling for additional restrictions," Reuwer said. "Right now, the drought is so severe — it's at such an exceptional level that we've really got to make some hard decisions as far as non-essential use of water." Officials say because there's been little replenishment in recent years, underground water levels are dropping more quickly. "We've got to take some action on our part to protect the springs and water sources in a way to help stabilize the aquifer," Reuwer said. HOURS Of SERfltf Sundajj-Ttiurafaj) ilgO-%30 frfafaj) anj Satunfafl fl:QO-lft3o 1692 S. State Hwy 46 • New Braunfels 3 miles East of IH-35 S. ;