New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - September 21, 1983, New Braunfels, Texas
Wednesday, September 21,1983 10A
Debate centers on gas
AUSTIN (AP) — Opposing attorneys in*
I formally debated a question now before the Texas Railroad Commission that could decide who profits from oil and gas reservoirs in the Texas Panhandle estimated to be worth $27 I billion.
The debate centers on how a gas well differs I from an oil well, which is important to producers because Commission rules allow 64 oil wells per I square mile and only one gas well.
Major gas producers say independent oil drillers are calling “gas wells” “oil wells” so they can sink more wells on a parcel.
Independent producers say all wells produce some oil and some gas, but that doesn’t make them all gas wells.
Gas producers, such as Phillips Petroleum Inc., say the independents drilled so many gas wells on the Panhandle field that they are depleting supplies, and could eventually force gas rates in Amarillo, now the lowest in the state, to soar.
Phillips and others have asked the Railroad Commission to stop the independents from using refrigerating units on Panhandle wells that turn gas into a liquid and qualify the well as an “oil well.”
“We will establish that it’s a gas when it reaches the surface and it’s a gas in the reservoir and it should be counted as a gas for determining whether the well is a gas well or an oil well...,” Phillips lawyer Joe Cochran told Ivan Hailey, an Austin attorney for the independents, during a recess Tuesday.
“They’ve already taken our oil and made it into gas underground by blowing the reservoir pressure down with their gas wells. They have vaporized our oil. Now they say we can’t get our oil back as a liquid and call it oil,” countered Hailey.
Geologist Raymond Stonier of Dallas was the first witness to testify for Phillips on Tuesday. He recited the geologic history of the Panhandle field, which encompasses about 1.5 million acres mostly in Moore, Hutchinson, Carson, Potter. Gray and Wheeler comities.
Man convicted in Pizza Hut deaths
MOUNT PLEASANT, Texas (AP) - A state district court jury rejected the testimony of six alibi witnesses and convicted Calvin Loyd Padgett of capital murder in the robbery-slayings of three employees killed at a Pizza Hut in this Northeast Texas town.
State District Judge William R. Porter ordered the panel to return today to decide whether Padgett should be sentenced to die or face a life prison sentence for the slaying of Howard Leroy McClaflin, 25.
After the jury returned its verdict Tuesday, about an hour of testimony was heard in the punishment phase before the hearing was recessed for the day.
Six people had testified that Padgett was working on May IO, 1962, at Healdton, Okla., 220 miles away from where the three victims were killed that night.
But prosecutors countered the alibis with the testimony of the bookkeeper at J.D. Bray’s Paint Co. in Healdton, who said there
were no records that Padgett, 28, worked on the day of the murder. Payroll records showed he was paid for 10V4 hours fewer than usual that week, the bookkeeper said.
Padgett, 28, also is charged with capital murder in the deaths of George Dwain Landrum, 42, and Shirley O’Bier Thompson, 24.
The bodies were found in or near a walk-in cooler at the rear of the restaurant. All had been shot, and Landrum had also been hit in the head with a hammer, authorities said.
Michael Earl Davis, a former patrolman for the Mount Pleasant police called as a defense witness, testified that he concluded from his investigation that one person could not have committed the murders.
Officers arrested Padgett late last year with his girlfriend and 15-year-old brother in Oklahoma, where he was charged with the November robbery of a service station-restaurant. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to life in prison.
Deliberations continue in weapons trial
DALLAS (AP) — Jurors in the trial of five men accused of conspiring tv smuggle infrared radar units to Libya could not reach a verdict after seven hours of deliberations and were directed to try again today.
The panel began its considerations Tuesday after six days of testimony.
Defense attorneys argued during the trial that the defendants were entrapped by overzealous government informants.
But prosecutors contended the five defendants became involved because of their “love of money.”
On trial are former Harris County
deputy constables Mike Deans and Tom Johnson, Fort Worth businessman Hugh Briscoe, Houston helicopter pilot Greg Zwarycz and Ed Frasher, an employe of Briscoe’s.
The five were arrested three months ago as a result of a sting operation set up by U.S. Customs agents and using a man posing as a wealthy Arab and other government informants who claimed to have a market for the military equipment.
Agents secretly recorded two meetings between the man posing as the wealthy Arab and some of the defendants.
Truck overturns with rockets
SHAMROCK (AP) - Some residents near this Panhandle community were forced to leave their homes for a time and traffic was diverted after a truck loaded with hundreds of military rockets overturned on Interstate 40, authorities said.
The truck was enroute from Fort Smith, Ark., to Alamogordo, N.M., when it flipped over about 3:30 a.m. Tuesday about two miles west of
Shamrock, said Larry Todd, spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety.
The warheads were being shipped separately, Todd said.
Residents living within one mile of the accident site were evacuated for a short time and traffic was diverted for most of Tuesday, officers said.
One crate was damaged, but there was no damage to the rockets and the cargo remained intact, Todd said.
State officials investigate abduction
GRAND PRAIRIE (AP) - State officials have begun an investigation to determine whether a day care center in this Dallas suburb violated state regulations that forbid the release of children to anyone except their parents or authorized adults.
Jessica Davis, 3-month-old daughter of Charles and Kathryn Davis, was abducted Monday morning from Jack k Dee Doehier Learning Center in Grand Prairie by a woman who called to say she would be by to pick up her niece for a photo session, police said.
Police said Tuesday they had no suspects. The parents made a tearful plea for their child’s return.
Jack Doshier, co-owner of the day care center, said attendants who released the
baby to the abductor had “no way to suspect anything was wrong.”
“It's not uncommon for parents to call (that someone else will pick up a child). We thought the mother had called this time. It was certainly a setup. It wasn’t because of negligence on our part. She was very clever. It could have happened anywhere,” Doshier said.
The Texas Department of Human Resources, which oversees day care centers, refused Tuesday to release inspection files concerning the center because its investigation into the abduction is pending.
John Polk, assistant department administrator for the North Texas region, said the day-care licensing office sent an investigator to the Grand Prairie center
Floods claim 3rd victim
HOUSTON (AP) -Rains that swelled southeast Texas bayous into thundering torrents ended and floodwaters receded to reveal Houston’s third drowning victim.
Police recovered the body of 14-year-old Joe Wayne Ellis about IO a.m. Tuesday, Sgt. W.M. Casteel said.
Ellis was knocked off a raft in a southwest Houston stream Monday about half a mile from where his body was discovered, Casteel said.
Officers earlier found the body of 16-year-old Terre Ardoin from a southeast Houston drainage ditch and that of Gustavo Meza, 9, from a north Houston bayou.
Residents of homes along Brays Bayou kl southwest Houston, one of the hardest-hit areas, triad to dry their houses.
“Nething could have been any worse except for a fire — that’s how bad it was,” said Eddie Nickeisoa, who lives in that area. "We couldst even get things off the fleer hud tnough.”
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Tuesday to “evaluate the zecurity arrangements.”
The day care center was opened two years ago with a license to care for 102 children, Doshier said.
“We're reevaluating our security and the way a child ii picked up,” Doahier said.
Police said the woman who took the baby was in her late 20a, about 5 foot 5 and weighed about 130 pounds. She had acne scars on her face, brown eys and wavy brown hair pulled hack in a bun and was dressed in a blue hospital lab coat with the initials OB-GYN embroidered on the front, investigators said.
“I want her to know that God gave me the right to carry my child for nine months and to have her,” Mrs. Davis, 28, said.
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