Sunday, June 28, 2009




  Kaufman DA apologizes
Kaufman DA Rick Harrison says “I am sorry” after DWI arrest
Monitor Staff Reports
KAUFMAN–Kaufman County district attorney Rick Harrison issued a statement Wednesday in response to his recent arrest on suspicion of driving while intoxicated.
“To my family and friends, to the men and women in law enforcement, to the victims of DWI and to the people of Kaufman County I can only say I am sorry that I let you down,” he stated.
“You deserve better from me. Someone is law enforcement is and should be held to a higher standard,” Harrison stated.
According to the Seagoville Police Department, Harrison had been driving on the wrong side of a divided roadway when he struck a car that was turning onto Seagoville Road from a side street.
No one was seriously injured in the accident that took place shortly after midnight June 18.
Harrison was charged with one count of driving while intoxicated with a previous conviction, a Class A misdemeanor.
He posted bond a few hours after his arrest.
The previous conviction came 14 years ago, in December, 1994, when he was working as an assistant district attorney in Dallas County. Harrison had been an assistant DA for five years before the arrest prompted his resignation.
Harrison’s prepared statement reported that he and his family have begun counseling.
“I have always given Kaufman County my best. I am proud of the people in my office, and what we have accomplished, and will continue to give my all,” he stated.
He also expressed gratitude for the many calls of encouragement and support.
“You will never know how much it has meant to me,” he said. “Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers.”


Mabank, ECCFWSD pursues transfer of water customers
Monitor Staff Reports
GUN BARREL CITY–Since Mabank and East Cedar Creek Fresh Water Supply District have agreed on all the major points of a transfer of water customers in Gun Barrel City from Mabank to the district, the proposal to pursue the purchase goes before the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) for review.
Once the sales application is approved (a 30-day process), TCEQ will file a public notice of intent.
ECCFWSD will then mail out a formal public notice explaining the particulars to everyone affected by the transfer.
Among the particulars will be a description of the affected area, and how the transfer will most likely affect customers’ services and rates.
The notice will also provide an avenue for submitting written protests and seeking a public hearing. These steps need to be taken within 30 days of receiving the notice.
The entire acquisition process may carry into 2010, ECCFWSD general manager Bill Goheen said. Until then, water, sewer service and billing remains the same.
The business conducted at the June ECCFWSD board meeting reported by The Monitor June 21 was meant to publicize that Mabank and the district were pursuing a change in their service areas, Goheen said.


Burglars steal safe, jewelry, cash
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer

MABANK– Sometime after 8:30 a.m. Wednesday after family members had left for work, burglars broke into the north Mabank home of Andrea and Joe Pickens, owners of Tri-County Ford in Mabank.
“The burglars knew exactly what they wanted,” Joe Pickens said. “They went straight to a bedroom closet and took a rolling safe.”
As if just noticing it, the burglars then picked up a Mossburg 12-gauge shotgun and a .22 caliber rifle as they exited the closet.
Even though there were other valuable items in the house, including more jewelry, the safe was what the thieves were after, Van Zandt Precinct 2 Constable C. B. Wiley told The Monitor.
“The contents of the safe totaled about $46,000,” Wiley said.
The 15 by 18-inch safe contained jewelry, 30 gold coins and $10,000 in $100 bills, he added.
The serial numbers of the bills and description of the jewelry, gold coins and guns have been made available to other law enforcement agencies.
“All this stuff has been put on the statewide computers, and if anyone tries to buy the stolen property, they will also be prosecuted,” Wiley said.
One of the serial numbers on the firearms is UM655887, Wiley added.
Police are already working through a list of suspects, Wiley said.
Anyone with information helpful in this case are asked to call Wiley at (903) 880-5955.
“If someone tries to sell something, or if anyone saw a car or truck or anything suspicious near the Pickens’s home, they should call,” he said.
“We will get them eventually. Someone will call us, and we will get them,” Wiley promised.
The burglars entered through a window on the east side of the house, where a RV is parked.
“That window was damaged badly enough we will probably have to replace the brick around it,” Joe Pickens said.
Although the alarm wasn’t armed at the time, he has promised it will be from now on.
The house is located at 12465 State Highway 198, one mile east of Farm-to-Market 47.

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