New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 1, 2011, New Braunfels, Texas
■ LOCAL MUSIC, 2Battle of Bands to raise funds for PTA
■ SPORTS, 6Canyon Cougars face Cedar Park
■ POLICE, 3Former Austin police officer found dead in New Braunfels hotel
Texas ^jp Newspaper of the Year
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Wlïïipniirrnii ifflliiiiij.Report: Driver more than 3 times legal limit
By J. Louise Larson
Toxicology results show Mark Anthony Saldivar had a blood alcohol content of .242 — more than three times the legal limit — when he died after a high speed police chase on 1-35.
The New Braunfels man led New Braunfels police officers on a chase in the early morn
Toxicology reveals man who died in chase on Feb. 10 had BAC of .242
ing hours of Feb. 10.
"(The vehicle) was traveling through the intersection at over 100 mph when it impacted with a curb, which caused the driver to lose control, and then a second impact caused the vehicle to roll over twice," said New
Braunfels Police Lt. Michael Penshorn.
Saldivar, 38, died on the scene from wounds sustained when he was ejected through the vehicle's windshield.
An officer parked in the area of ValMark Chevrolet, observed a red Ford Expedi
tion traveling northbound on 1-35 at a high rate of speed around 2:16 a.m.
“When the officer caught up and attempted to conduct a traffic stop on the vehicle, the driver refused to stop and began to evade the officer,” Penshorn said.
"The vehicle continued northbound, exiting 1-35 at Kohlenberg Road, crossed over 1-35 overpass and then sped throughout the Quail Valley subdivision before heading back south on the southbound frontage road of 1-35.
“At approximately the 1500 block of the 1-35 North southbound frontage, the driver of the vehicle lost control, stnick the roadway curbing in front of Honda of New Braunfels, flipping his vehicle several times. The driver of the vehicle was ejected during the crash and did not survive," he said.
See REPORT, Page 10
FOR UNCOMMON VALOR
ABOVE: Assistant Chief Joe Vargas, left, pins a Medal of Valor onto CpI.
Joe Robles at the start of Monday's City Council meeting. Robles, along with officers Robert Salinas (loft) and Kyle Williams (right), received the honor for saving the life of a kidnap victim on Dec. 2.
Officers recieve Medal of Valor for part in saving kidnap victim
By J. Louise Larson
Surrounded by a sea of blue uniforms and heralded by a standing ovation, three New Braunfels police officers received Medals ofValor Monday night.
Presented at the beginning of the New Braunfels City Council meeting, the medals gleamed gold and blue on the uniformed of Officer Robert Salinas, Officer Kyle Williams and Cpl. Joe Robles, honored for showing resolute bravery on Sunspur Drive the night of Dec. 2,2010.
The three were galvanized to action in the face of danger when Glenn Shane Godden, 39, of Seguin — bent on killing his estranged wife and her parents — turned his gun on the officers the
It’s a call you don’t normally hear. You just get a gut feeling... you know you’ve trained for it.
— Cpl. JOE ROBLES, recipient of Medal of Valor
night of Wassailfest.
Robles recalled getting a sense that the call to respond to a break-and-enter and possible kidnapping was no ordinary call.
“It’s a call you don't normally hear. You just get a gut feeling: you know something’s not right. You know you’ve trained for it,” he said.
Footage from the three officers’ squad car video cameras, put together at the NBPD, is dramatic. As Godden’s van passes one NBPD vehicle, the driver’s side door is shown swinging open where the
victim, 32, was apparently trying to escape but had gotten snagged.
The urgent call rang out on the radio: “Stop that van! It’s dragging a woman!”
The images capture the menacing approach of the van’s headlights when after passing one officer the van accelerated, crossed to the left side of the roadway, and rammed a second patrol car head on. The van came to rest with the front wheels on the windshield area of the patrol car, and with the female victim trapped underneath both vehicles.
The footage shows Godden repeatedly trying to fire his pistol at her, getting back in the van and trying to drive if off from atop the police car, then getting out and and attempting to shoot the victim repeatedly, again.
Godden exited his van and pointed a handgun at the trapped female, attempting to shoot her, but the weapon apparently malfunctioned.
“The gun malfunctioned. Thank, God," said Chief Tom Wibert as he narrated the details Monday night.
Godden’s estranged wife, pinned under both vehicles, still had reason to fear him.
“(Godden) said he was going to kill her and both her parents,” Wibert said.
Salinas had to kick his way out of See VALOR, Page 10
Vol. 158, No. 94 10 pages, 1 section
Herald-Zeitung reporter Bowen honored for drainage stories with statewide award
AUSTIN — Greg Bowen of the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung received the 2010 Texas Daily Newspaper Association Editorial Achievement Award in a presentation at The Driskill Hotel on Monday, Feb. 28. The editorial award was created, according to TDNA, to recognize “courage and commitment to the newsroom and leadership in the community,
in advocating and pursuing openness and accessibility to government.”
Bowen was instrumental in the newspaper’s coverage of record flooding and its after-math in New Braunfels this past summer.
Bowen’s “Drainage 101” series leading up to public
See BOWEN, Page 10
► CITY COUNCIL
Council OKs $3M for FM 306 expansion
By Greg Bowen
Funding in the amount of $3 million that would go toward the construction of a wider and safer Farm-to-Mar-ket 306, the increasingly crowded main roadway connecting New Braunfels and I-35 with the Canyon Dike area, was approved Monday by the New Braunfels City Council.
Council voted to allocate the funds to the $47 million Texas Department of ITansportation project to improve FM 306 from 1-35 to west of Hunter Road.
Council also voted to accept sales tax revenues in the amount of $3 million from the city’s Industrial Development Corporation to go toward the 306 project.
The final piece of the funding would come from Comal County, which is being asked to contribute $6 million to the project. The county is expected to formally approve participation and commit to funding their share of the local funds for the project this month.
“It’s wonderful to have the city, the county and TxDOT working together,” said Richard Keady, leader of the FM 306 Improvements Coalition, one of five citizens who spoke in favor of the funding.
The FM 306 Coalition had in weeks past turned in a citizens’ petition bearing more than 1,150 signatures calling for the quick improvement of FM 306, which they say poses a public safety hazard because of significant delays caused by the 40-plus trains that cross the busy farm road daily and tie up traffic, including emergency vehicles.
Many of the group’s members filled the council chambers on Monday and applauded after the vote to fund the project.
“We very much appreciate your support,” Keady said.
TxDOT Area Engineer Ben Englehardt told council that plans are to build two overpasses over the railroad tracks and to widen the road from
See COUNCIL, Page 10
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