Sunday, August 8, 2010


Man stabs 4 officers in melee
Monitor Staff Reports
CHEROKEE SHORES–Officers from six law enforcement agencies converged on Cherokee Shores Tuesday night after a Gun Barrel City officer was attacked and her assailant fled into the woods.
According to Gun Barrel City assistant chief Larry Warrick, investigator Tiffany Carrizales was attempting to serve an arrest warrant on Donald Ray Huback Jr., 19.
When she and officer Ken Bee arrived at Rising Star Trail in Cherokee Shores, Huback was not there. By speaking to neighbors, they ascertained that Huback was living in a small RV trailer on Rising Star Trail.
While Bee was parking the police car out of sight, Huback returned from the store, where he had purchased a two-liter bottle of soda.
Carrizales, who was in uniform, felt she should intercept him before he could enter the residence, in order to avoid a possible violent situation, Warrick said.
After she approached Huback and identified herself, she called the suspect by name. However, Huback denied his identity.
Carrizales stated she knew his identity, and attempted to take him into custody.
However, Huback swung the grocery sack containing the full two-liter soda bottle at her head, and then pushed or pulled the stunned officer into a nearby trailer and fled the scene.
When Bee returned, he gave aid to Carrizales and called for an ambulance and backup.
Shortly afterwards, five Gun Barrel City officers, including chief Damon Boswell, arrived.
Warrick said he called Henderson County Sheriff Ray Nutt and requested tracking dogs.
He also called Texas Ranger Michael Adcock, and advised him of the situation and subsequent manhunt.
Carrizales was taken to the ETMC Cedar Creek Lake emergency room in Gun Barrel City, where she was treated for head and neck trauma and later released.
Nutt and his lieutenant, Bryan Tower, along with Boswell, took control of the scene upon arrival.
A perimeter was set in place to contain the fugitive, made up of numerous deputies, investigators from the Henderson County District Attorney’s Office and several men from the Athens Police Department, including chief Buddy Hill and Det. James Bonnette.
Soon afterwards, officers from the Texas Department of Criminal Justice arrived with tracking dogs.
Entry into the RV was made to procure something with Huback’s scent. However, officers noticed movement inside the residence.
Several officers searched for Huback, finding him under the bed.
Huback had gotten inside the RV by crawling into an outside storage hatch, which opened under the bed.
Warrick reported that Huback swung a knife at Bonnette’s legs before getting to his feet.
Facing the officers, he attacked with his knife, charging at Tower and reaching over his shoulders to stab him several times in the back.
Boswell tried to disarm Huback, and was stabbed in the arm. An unidentified TDCJ employee was also stabbed during the struggle to disarm Huback.
Huback was taken to the Gun Barrel City ER, where he was medically cleared.
He was then booked into the city’s jail on the original forgery warrant, and then transported to the Henderson County Jail, where he was booked on five counts of aggravated assault on a public servant.
He was later transported to the Smith County jail in Tyler, where he was arraigned by a Smith County magistrate, who set bond at $2.5 million for the combined charges.
After Huback’s removal from the scene in Cherokee Shores, Adcock took control of the scene and conducted an investigation.
Officers injured in the incident were treated and released in Gun Barrel City.
“This was a great show of unity from all Henderson County law enforcement,” Boswell said. He added sincere thanks to all the officers from the various agencies for coming to the aid of one of his officers.

Mayor promises to include some requests on agenda
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

SEVEN POINTS–In a sometimes heated discussion between two Seven Points city councilmen and Mayor Joe Dobbs Thursday over control over the agenda, Dobbs promised to put at least some of the requested items on the next agenda.
He and city councilman Bubba Powell and mayor pro-tem Hank Laywell also agreed to meet privately to work out some of their differences.
The two of the three council members who have been absent from at least one regular monthly council meeting, Laywell and Powell spoke with Dobbs over a speakerphone in the city secretary’s office for about 45 minutes with members of the media invited to listen in at the office door.
SevenPointsLaywell.jpg (360679 bytes)During the conversation, Dobbs said some of the five specific items Laywell and Powell had sought to place on the council’s agenda since May would indeed be on the agenda for the council’s regular Tuesday, Aug. 10, meeting.

Monitor Photo/Kerry Yancey
Seven Points mayor pro-team Hank Laywell talks with mayor John “Joe” Dobbs over a speakerphone in the city secretary’s office Thursday.

The conversation also revealed deep personal conflicts, particularly between Laywell and Dobbs, who were civil (just barely) to each other, but occasionally traded sharply barbed comments.
Agenda items Laywell, Powell and councilwoman Cheryl Jones want to discuss at the next meeting, include:
• Discuss, approve or disapprove Financial Report from Mayor since taking office, comparing actual (expenses) to budgeted figures. Take any action necessary.
• Discuss, approve or disapprove powers and duties of the City Council. Take any action necessary.
• Discuss, approve or disapprove City personnel policy. Take any action necessary.
• Discuss, approve or disapprove actions taken by the Mayor concerning personnel matters. Take any action necessary.
• Discuss, approve or disapprove Local Government Code, Sec. 22.038, Subsection C. Take any action necessary.
It was not clear from the conversation, which items Dobbs will include on the Aug. 10 agenda.
Laywell was upset with his inability to obtain city financial reports, specifically covering the time since Dobbs was sworn in. He charged that some past records had been changed after approval by the council.
“We were told we would have to wait 10 days (after making the request),” Laywell said. “As a councilman, I can’t get reports any quicker than anybody off the street?”
“If that was all she (the city secretary) had to do,” Dobbs replied, “but we’ve got a city to run here, and we’re having to do it without you.”
“I told you (at the May council meeting) I was looking forward to working with you,” Laywell told Dobbs. “I feel like a fool.”
Powell suggested a private meeting with Dobbs, who said, “I can get off work right now.”
Powell demurred, suggesting sometime late Friday afternoon.
“Maybe we can work this out, Hank,” Powell told Laywell and Dobbs.
Later, Laywell specifically criticized Dobbs for not allowing council members to speak during the meetings.
“You showed a lack of respect for me, the council and the citizens,” Laywell charged.
“We took an oath to obey and support the law,” Dobbs shot back. “You’re not doing that if you fail to show up at meetings.”
Following a few more minutes of conversation, Laywell said, “If he will put our stuff on the agenda, and meet with us, I’ll go along with that.”
Powell had a specific complaint about Dobbs signing checks for city business without a counter-signature, saying he (as a council member) agreed to require two signatures on city checks back in 2003.
“I feel I can talk to you, Bubba, ’cause I don’t trust Laywell at all,” Dobbs told Powell.
“Whoa,” Laywell (sitting nearby) said softly.
After the close of the conversation, Powell said he hoped the three could work out their differences.
“We’ve got to have a working relationship with him (Dobbs),” Powell said.


Officer foils burglary at computer store
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

GUN BARREL CITY–Three suspects in an attempted burglary at Gun Barrel Computers were in custody Thursday morning and about to be questioned about the incident.
With an assist from the Seven Points Police Department, Gun Barrel City officers detained Hispanics Ramiro Ayala-Valdez, 19, of Dallas, Christian Rito Ayala, 18, of Mesquite and a black female, Quintellia Shevett Spencer, 35, of Plano.
Gun Barrel City officer Kenny Collard responded to a silent alarm at around 4 a.m. Thursday at 616 W. Main St. and found the back door open and safe ready to be moved out.
Gun Barrel City assistant chief Larry Warrick told The Monitor that when Collard arrived, he also noted a van parked in the back.
Upon entering, Collard detected movement and came up on Ayala-Valdez, who was wearing black gloves and holding a flashlight.
Collard snapped handcuffs on him, secured him in the back of his patrol car and called for back up.
He returned to the building, but found no one else on the premises.
A search of the van turned up three ID cards, including those of the other two suspects. Seven Points police officers were able to locate the suspects nearby and brought them in to Gun Barrel City PD.
Also inside the van were several computers, bolt cutters, cutting torch crowbars and gloves.
Warrick said he would question the suspects before issuing formal charges and see them transported to the Henderson County jail.


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