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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 22, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas MC * ^TWK8T'««W»iaft*S <21 E VftNDBL EL"WO TU 7WJ JL %! MAY 22, 2004    F"W ald-Zeitung SPORTS PLAYOFFS The New Braunfels softball team defeats Kingsville 2-1, moves on to regional finals. Page SA FORUM MOLLY IVINS Blaming six soldiers for Iraqi prison abuse fiasco stinks of a cover-up; orders came from the top. Page 4A Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852. Vol. 153, No. 166 16 pages, 2 sections CLICK 50$ www: '56825 00001 ■U0 percent chance of rain High Low 89 72 Details .... IB DEAR ABBY 3B CLASSIFIEDS 48 COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM    4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS 5-6A TV GRIDS 3BWitnesses give lesson on Mexican Mafia By Ron Malonoy Staff Writer Three different police officers Friday connected homicide defendant John Hernandez with the Mexican Mafia. The last full day in Assistant District Attorney Joe Soane's prosecution of Hernandez, 32, for the April 28,2002, killing of Pablo Esquivel was a tutorial for jurors on the Mexican Media and other street gangs that operate in New Braunfels. If convicted in Judge Jack Robison’s 207th Judicial District Court, Hernandez faces between five and 99 years in prison. Comal County Sheriff’s Detective Sgt. Tommy Ward, who headed the investigation into Esquivel’s stabbing death, testified that co-defendant Santiago Suarez, 34, linked Hernandez and Daniel Campos Correa with the Mexican Mafia. Correa, who was scheduled to go on trial with Hernandez, pleaded guilty to murder Monday in exchange for an 11-year sentence. Suarez’s trial has not been set. Ward, sheriff’s deputy and former undercover narcotics detective Rick Sanchez and Live Oak Police Sgt. Anita Seamans all said confidential informants told them Hernandez was a “soldier” in the Mexican Mafia. Seamans, a detective who investigates gangs, found what she said was a copy of the Mexican Mafia’s “constitution” in an April 19, 2002, search of a Live Oak man’s home. The man, who is now serving federal time, will be paroled in September, Seamans said, and will resume his position as the Mexican Mafia lieutenant whose franchise is New Braunfels. In his absence, she identified a local businessman who, she said, is now running the organization here until the lieutenant returns. “It’s a paramilitary group,” Seamans said. “They have See GANGS, Page 3A Rule requires initial show of support for agenda items (Above, right) Rebecca Rojas, 2, couldn't wait to bite into one of the peaches her family purchased Friday afternoon at the Farmer's Market. (Above) Vendor Brittany Bush, center, helps Janice Whitfield with her selection as Jeremy Cabrera pulls more fresh fruit and vegetables off of their truck. (Right) A large selection of homegrown fruits and vegetables is available at the Farmer’s Market, which is set up Fridays off Caste!! Avenue. See COUNCIL. Page 3A Just, Peachy Enjoy the fruits of local labor at Farmer’s Market By Scott Mahon Staff Writer The idea failed last year, but New Braunfels Mayor Adam Cork said there is enough support now to require two council members’ approval before an item can be placed on a city meeting agenda. Monday, council will consider the first reading of an ordinance that allows any council member to “place an item on the agenda so long as it... is signed by said submitting member and at least one other council member." Although at least one council member said he would not support the proposal, other cities have a similar requirement. "I’ll oppose it because I don’t know what problem it’s going to fix,” said District 6 Councilman Ken Valentine. “I also think it will disenfranchise constituents.” District 2 Councilman Larry Alexander proposed the idea last year, but his motion was never seconded, he said. “I think it’s a good idea,” Alexander said. “The staff ends up spending time on items placed on the agenda, and too many times there’s never a second for motion. So it ends up being a waste of time.” San Marcos City Attorney Mark Taylor said San Marcos passed a similar ordinance several years ago. “You want council to focus on business that the majority of council would be interested in,” he said. “You don’t want just one council member placing items on the agenda that have no support. In fact, four or five years ago, the city of Dallas went through this when they required five council members to approve an item before it was put on the agenda.” In 1998, the Office of the Attorney General supported Dallas’ rule, noting five council members constituted one-third of the Dallas city council. In his opinion, Attorney General Dan AT A GLANCE B What: New Braunfels City Council ■ Whan: 5 p m Monday ■ Whara: Council Chambers. Municipal Bulking, 424 j S Casten Ave By Leigh Jonas Staff Writer See MARKKT. Page 3A Shoppers at the Farmer's Market had a cornucopia of fresh fruits and vegetables to choose from for dinner Friday. Mary Nagiller has been shopping at the market for 12 years. “I love fresh vegetables, and it s the only place I can get them,” she said. “I buy for the week and come back every Friday.” The downtown Farmer’s Market is open 3 to 6 p.m. Fridays through December in First Protestant Church’s Mornhin-weg Center parking lot. Patrick Pellerin has sold his certified organic vegetables in New Braunfels for Photos by DAVID INGRAM/Herald-Zeitung years. “Organic food is grown without using chemical pesticides or chemical fertilizers,” he said. "More people in Austin are concerned about buying organic, but there are some people here who look for it.” First-time shopper Sharon Hileman had a bag on each arm. “It s all so fresh, and it’s so convenient," she said. Chris Pinero, with Caskey Orchards, stood behind a table full of peaches. “Peaches an* doing really well this year,” he said. “We even have jars of spiced peaches.” Pinero also said the preserves, especially the sugar-free varieties, were good sellers. AT A GLANCE I ■ What: Farmer s Market I ■ When: 3 to 6 j p.m. Fridays through December ; ■ Where: First Protestant Churchs Mornhinweg Center. 205 S 170-yw River cleanup effort called ‘complete’; falls still plugged By Ron Maloney Staff Writer CANYON LAKE — Restoration work on the Guadalupe River bed at Horseshoe Falls Estates was finished Friday — without restoring the picturesque falls. Precinct 4 Commissioner Jan Kennady said Friday afternoon the U.S. Natural Resource Conservation Service and its contractor had finished removing what rock and gravel it could from the confluence of the spillway gorge and the river. Local officials hoped the work, designed to deepen the river channel and reduce flooding risk to homes and property at peak discharge rates from Canyon Dam, would also restore die falls. County Engineer Tom Hornseth said Friday the flood threat was successfully dealt with. “They’re finished,” Hornseth said. “The contractor has completed the project and will be doing some final dressing up, but the actual moving of material is complete.” The falls, Hornseth said, were not cleared to the degree the county— and area residents — hoped. “They made an effort to remove some of the material, but due to reconfiguration of the sediment, theres a backflow that during low flows will back up water to the falls,” I lornseth said. Over time and with future flooding events, he said it was likely some sediment would be washed away. “The overall project, in my opinion, was a success. We were able to restore the channel so the upstream properties will be safe,” Hornseth said. “We’ve accomplished as much as we’ll be able to accomplish." Kennady described die work as “a remarkable feat” and said she was glad for river outfitters that it was completed before Memorial Day. “It looked just fantastic when I was out there,” she said. “I think we’ve essentially accomplished what we set out to do, and I’m exceedingly pleased.” She acknowledged she would have liked to have seen the falls brought back, though. “While I would have liked to have the falls fully restored, our ultimate goal was to have the houses protected from flooding,'’ she said. ;