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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung Newspaper Archives

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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 14, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas >iV FELS 20332 MOO9 .10/22/99 SO-WEST MIC RO PU BL I SHING 2627 E YRNDELL DR 7 0Herald-Zeitujnu Vol. 148, No. 126 24 pages in 2 sections May 14,1999 Friday Serving Comal County since 1852 50 centsJury finds Layman guilty, gives him 99-year sentence By Heather Todd Staff Writer A prison inmate will likely spend the rest of his life in jail after a Comal County jury sentenced him Thursday for encouraging his wife to commit sexual acts with her 11-year-old son. The 10-woman, two-man jury found Richard Warren Layman, 47, guilty of indecency with a child by contact and exposure. The jury sentenced him to 99 years in prison for the indecency by contact charge, and 20 years in prison for the indecency by exposure charge. Layman also will have to pay a $ 10,000 fine for each charge, which is the maximum fme. The jury decided Layman “promoted, solicited, aided and directed’* his wife’s sexual molestation of her son through letters and phone conversations while serving time at the Garza Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice center in Beeville. The abuse occurred in March and April 1998. Layman was arrested for a parole violation in September 1997. The jury also used evidence of a previous conviction to enhance Layman’s second- degree indecency by contact charge to a first-degree felony. Subsequently, the third-degree exposure charge was enhanced to a second-degree felony. Layman originally was convicted of aggravated sexual assault of a child in Brazos County in 1985. The victim in that case was Layman’s 12-year old stepdaughter, who became pregnant with his child. Layman’s wife pleaded guilty to indecency with a child by exposure in October 1998. She is serving a five-year sentence at a state correctional facility in Gatesville but is in custody at the Comal County Jail. Layman has six children, including one son by his current wife before her arrest in 1998. The 11-year-old is not Layman’s biological son. During foe punishment hearing, Layman testified foe sexual fantasies in his letters to his wife were their “dirty little secrets” and should have been kept private. “Everybody has them. I’m sure everyone on foe jury has dirty little secrets,” he told foe jury. Layman said both he and his wife were abused as children. He also said he had spent the past IO years in the prison system and it had no rehabilitative effect. Under questioning by criminal district attorney Dib Waldrip, Layman said he apologized for asking the juvenile to take pornographic pictures of his mother and said it “never should have happened.” During closing arguments, defense attorney Randy Gray of New Braunfels said foe defendant was “immoral and disgusting” but could not be convicted for crimes committed by another person. “You can’t convict someone for wanting, asking or thinking. You don’t have to like him or agree with him, but you need to apply foe same rights that are held to you, to him,” he said. i The party’s over I to rn i#Lf Music jam will benefit Little League —    ROBIN    CORNETT    /Herald-Zertung A Polaroid photo of the house at 1875 Katy St. shows the amount of damage it received from area gangs. New Braunfels city officials had the abandoned building demolished on Thursday and said it sent a message that gang activity would not be tolerated. City tears down abandoned house, takes stand on gang activity Bv Peri Stone Staff Writer New Braunfels city officials said the demolition of an abandoned house Thursday on Katy Street should send a message that New Braunfels will not tolerate gang activity. Beer cans and cartons lined foe outside of the dilapidated home at 1825 Katy St. Graffiti covered an outside wall and the trunk of a tree in foe backyard. “"rite police department found a small bag of cocaine there on March 6,” said Don Ferguson, assistant to the city manager. Three bullet holes drilled into a next-door neighbor’s home offered more evidence of suspicious activity. “We hope this demolition will send a strong signal that we won’t tolerate this,” Ferguson said. District I city councilman Juan Luis Martinez, who represents the neighborhoods around the home, said the city would be looking into tearing down other abandoned homes as well. Not only are these buildings eyesores, Martinez said, but they can attract gangs. Mayor Stoney Williams said he encouraged neighbors to call the city at 608-2100 and report abandoned homes. Neighbors’ calls first prompted foe city to look into tearing down foe home, which had been abandoned since a fme ripped through it five years ago. Martinez said he received several phone calls ffom neighbors about loud parties at night. Ferguson said, “As a result of its vacancy, it became a hangout.” One neighbor who asked not to be named said she hadn’t noticed anything suspicious at the house. “It doesn’t bother me,” she said, admitting she was only home to sleep, eat and bathe. The neighbor said she hadn’t even noticed the See HOUSE/5A By Heather Tood Staff Writer Fans of Texas music can get a sample of the state’s best during the third annual Americana Music Jam on Sunday. KNBT (92.1 FM) Radio New Braunfels, which brings the sounds of South Central Texas to local listeners, is sponsoring foe event with a line-up of foe biggest up-and-comers on the Texas music scene. The music will start at 12:30 p.m. at Gruene Music Hall, 1281 Gruene Road, and continue well into the evening. Tickets cost $12. (For $2 off admission, find the coupon with today’s ad on page 9A.) Proceeds from this year’s Music Jam, which celebrates the station’s anniversary of its Americana format, will benefit the New Braunfels Little League. “Our goal is to make a different charity in the community a benefactor each year, depending on individual needs at foe time,” said Fred Stockwell, foe station’s general manager. The Little League's new fields on Loop 337 received extensive damage during foe 1998 flood. “ We felt that foe Little League was down on the priority list and had just started construction, so all the work they’d done was ruined,” he said. Last year, the Music Jam raised nearly $3,500, which was split evenly between the Comal County Senior Citizen Center and Communities in Schools. Artists performing this year include a mix of Texas-bom talent, from Ray Wylie Hubbard, known for his Texas-outlaw anthem “Up Against foe Wall Jammin’ WHAT: Third annual Americana Music Jam WHEN: 12:30 p.m. Sunday WHERE: Gruene Music Hall, 1281 Gruene Road WHY: Proceeds will benefit the New Braunfels Little League HOW MUCH: Admission is $12. A coupon for $2 off is on page 9A. Redneck Mother,” to San Marcos crooner Terri Hendrix. Clay B laker, who celebrated his 20th anniversary of performing at Gruene Hall in 1997, will take foe stage at 12:30 p.m. Local performer Bret Graham will perform at 1:15 p.m. San Antonio artist Rosie Flores will perform at 1:45 p.m. and Hendrix will follow at 2:30 p m Bandera native Bruce Robison will take the stage at 3 p.m., followed by Shaver — Billy Joe Shaver and son Eddy — at 3:45 p.m. At 4:30 p.m., Hubbard w ill perform, with Chris Knight at 5:15 p.m. The Derailers will take the stage at 6 p.m., followed by Slaid Cleaves at 6:45 p.m., Jimmy LaFave at 7:15 p.m. and Graham at 8 p.m. Dallas-based artist Jack Ingram will wrap up the show at 8:30 p.m. The radio station has featured an Americana Music format for three years, after a movement by Gavin Radio Magazine Americana has risen to national popularity as many artists have been featured on Country Music Television videos. CISD asks its communities for help in keeping schools away from crime By Heather Tooo Staff Writer SMITHSON VALLEY — About 75 parents and school faculty met Thursday night to strategize ways to improve communication as the best protection against violence in schools. Concerned parents and school administrators gathered at the Guadalupe Valley Telephone Cooperative to discuss present and future methods to keep students on Comal Independent School District campuses safe. The informational meeting was sponsored by CISD officials in reaction to foe deaths of 15 people last month at a Colorado high school and similar violent acts on campuses throughout foe country. Superintendent Jerry Major said community involvement was foe “real key” to preventing violence in schools. “We need to do a better job of talking and listening to our kids. All foe kids in CISD are good kids, but some of them make bad choices,” he said. “It is our responsibility to reach SeeCISD/5A Inside Abby............................ ......7A Classifieds.................... 8-14B Comics........................ ......8A Crossword................... ......7A Forum.......................... ......6A Local/Metro................. ......4A Movies......................... ......7A Obituanes.................... ......3A Sports.......................... ...1-4B Today.......................... ......2A Television..................... 8A Key cod# 76 Doctors are in McKenna Memorial Hospital registration clerk Dolly Rodriguez, uses the telephone during an open house Thursday. Residents were invited to tour the hospital's addition. ROBIN CORNETT/ Her«id-Z«ilung ;