Thursday, October 25, 2007







Intersection wreck sends one to ER
Monitor Staff Reports
GUN BARREL CITY–A collision Saturday afternoon at the intersection of State Highways 198 and 334 in Gun Barrel City resulted in a possible injury and two traffic violations for the driver of a 1990 blue Ford.
Nicky Lynn Patrick, 49, of Gun Barrel City and Malakoff was charged with failing to yield the right-of-way and for having an expired driver’s license.
Patrick was traveling south on SH 198 and made a left turn on to SH 334 when Ester Heard, 62, of Kemp had the green light to travel north through the intersection on SH 198.
Heard was struck on the driver’s side with possible injury, according to the police report.
She had a passenger, Helen Heard, in the front seat with her at the time of the accident. She was driving a 1996 Ram Dodge truck.

Monitor Photo/Janice Grubbs
First Responders bring in a stretcher for Ester Heard (laying on ground, center), who was hit on the driver’s side, during a collision at the corner of state highways 198 and 334 in Gun Barrel City Saturday. Her possible injuries were examined at ETMC in Gun Barrel City.


Quick emergency response saves apartment building
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

SEVEN POINTS–Though no one was severely injured in an apartment fire in Seven Points Sunday night, three fire departments responded to insure the fire wouldn’t spread to other units.
The decision and fast response time saved the other three units in the quad of apartments on Wood Street.
The Seven Points Fire Department was called out at 8:31 p.m.
“As soon as I reached the fire house, I had Tool and Gun Barrel City paged out to assist us,” incident commander George Johnson told The Monitor.
Fire Chief Mike Earnheart arrived to the scene a little later and reported it took Seven Points just four minutes to arrive.
“Gun Barrel was right behind,” he said.
Quick action on the part of Seven Points officer Brad Hendricks secured the safety of the firefighters and contained the fire until they could arrive.
“The officer cut power to the unit and used what was at hand, a garden hose, to slow the fire’s progress, Earnheart said.
Unconfirmed reports said the first pumper truck on the scene, No. 62, was having difficulty delivering the water pressure needed.
The second truck, No. 61, arrived minutes later and together the two pumper trucks provided the right amount of water pressure.
“Everything went okay,” Earnheart said.
“We made a real quick entry and stopped the fire with the one unit. The neighboring unit had only heavy water damage,” he said.
The firefighters also put some holes in the roof to vent out the heat, he added.
About 14 volunteer firefighters were on scene from the three fire departments, Earnheart reported.
It appears the fire began in the back of the unit where the washer and dryer are located, he said.

Citizen input limited to agenda items
Police chief withdraws resignation
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer

EUSTACE–A special meeting called to discuss the resignation of the Eustace police chief and to clarify what a citizen may speak out about at a council meeting drew a few vocal citizens to Monday’s session.
The hottest topic seemed to be the wording for the “citizens’ input” portion of each agenda.
While the council reviewed three wording options supplied by the city attorney, audience members questioned why they seemed to need to change the wording, and why now.
“Since the November meeting is coming up, they (council members) felt it should be clarified,” city secretary Dru Haynes explained.
A woman in the audience kept asking why there was no “open forum” listed on the agenda.
Mayor Laura Ward warned her if she spoke out again, she would be removed from the meeting.
Former mayor Sue January asked where the State Attorney General’s Opinions could be found on the matter, and she was told they could be found on the Internet.
When she started to ask another question, Ward had her removed from the room, under January’s protest that the action was not necessary.
The council members approved the third option, which spells out in detail the method for a citizen to speak on those items listed on the agenda and none other.
Citizens may ask to be put on the agenda five business days before the city council meeting.
While council members adjourned to executive session to discuss police chief Robert Walker’s resignaiton, the protesting citizens voiced their embarrassment over an aggravated assault charge leveled against Ward in September.
The alleged assault occurred outside Gater’s nightclub in Gun Barrel City. Ward posted a $20,000 bond.
January, who said she served as mayor for four years and never had to have a citizen removed from a council meeting, was visibly upset.
Questions concerning recall or removal of Ward were circulating among the audience members who waited for open session to resume.
“I feel like the citizens of Eustace, which are 76 percent retired, should come out and support the protest,” January said.
Eustace is a Type A, general law city. The procedures for removal of a mayor or council member are listed in section 21.002 of the Local government Code.
The procedure states any resident of the city can file a petition, stating the alleged grounds for removal, with the district court.
If the judge decides to issue a citation, a trial date can be set. But the petitioner must execute a bond that will pay judgement to the council member, if the grounds are found to be untrue.
When the city council reconvened, they denied Walker’s resignation, which he had withdrawn, to the cheers of those present.
“The council gave me everything I needed. It will be better from here on in,” he said. “I have four officers.”
Walker and his wife, Holly, have four children.