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Monday, December 24, 2012

NORAD: SANTA IS IN THE AIR!

This just in North American Defense Command (NORAD) has begun tracking Santa Clause as he zooms around the world bringing Christmas Gifts to good little boys and girls. Here's a photo of Santa's reindeer taking on some extra magic flying fuel from a KC-135 tanker over Australia.

 You can track Santa's flight HERE!

Merry Christmas to all from of us at Best Publications!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Duster forecast for tomorrow ...


Widespread blowing dust is forecast for tomorrow mainly after noon. Partly sunny, with a high near 57. Wind chill values between 29 and 36 early. 

It will be very windy, with a south southwest wind 15 to 25 mph becoming west southwest 30 to 40 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 55 mph.

On Wednesday Night areas of blowing dust should whip up before midnight. Lows will be around 17. Wind chill values between 7 and 12 are very likely so bundle up. 

It will  be very windy Thursday morning with a northwest wind 30 to 40 mph decreasing to 10 to 20 mph. Winds could gust as high as 60 mph.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Traffic Alert: Icy conditions make for hazardous driving

Amarillo Police, Fire and Texas DPS are working multiple wrecks on I-40, Hwy 287 and I-27.No injuries have been reported with most incident appearing to be vehicles that have slid off the highway.

Ambulances have transported three people to the hospital - all with non-life threatening injuries to area hospitals as of 10:30 PM Sunday night.

Since there are (and will be) too many wrecks to list here - as we go into the morning rush hour, drive carefully and listen to the Pro-News Live Scanner Feed for the latest driving and emergency information.

Amarillo Police: SCAM alert!

CONNECT AMARILLO: AMARILLO, TEXAS -- Amarillo Police have issued a warning about a nationally reported suspicious letter being mailed to residents.
The letter, according to police, is postmarked from Phoenix, Ariz., and appears to be from "US Airlines."
Police said the letter starts by saying it must be replied to by a certain date and that the recipient won two round trip airline tickets.
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) said the letter appears to be similar to a letter reported to it in July. The letter asks the recipient to call a 1-866 number.
In the Texas Panhandle, the BBB said it has received multiple phone calls about the letter and at least one person responded and was given a second number to call.
Police said if anyone receives this letter to simply trash it. Anyone who may have lost money because of the letter is asked to contact police at (806) 378-3038.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Center City Electric Light Parade is tonight!



 The Center City Electric Light Parade welcomes the Christmas season with lighted floats. Theme for 2012 is "The Nutcracker."  The parade starts at 11th and Polk and goes to Fourth and Buchanan where the city of Amarillo will light the city's Christmas Tree. Parade begins at 6PM!

Directions:
The Electric Light Parade is downtown starting at 11th and Polk Street and going to Fourth Avenue where it turns toward Buchanan.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Ken Burn's; The Dust Bowl featuring history of the Texas Panhandle - gets rave reviews


By Ned Martel, Published: November 16

This past April, there was no Pulitzer for fiction. Judges and prize administrators struggled to find the right work for right now, and then they gave up. One aftermath assessment: Novels have gotten twee.

In televised nonfiction, on the other hand, Ken Burns has no problem with the big picture. His documentaries for PBS are never not epic. He knows how to make chapters of America’s past seem urgent, whether he’s obsessing over a sport (baseball) or a musical genre (jazz). He’s unafraid of going wider, too, having assembled sagas on World War II and, most famously, the Civil War.

Like good novelists, Burns finds quiet awakenings amid everyday travails, no matter the time period. There’s no real problem with doing this, except the PBS impresario tends to exhaust interest in an epoch as if he’s conducting an honors seminar in the history department. Halfway through, while we’re all furrowing in airless archives, a question often arises: Can this be taken pass-fail?

With “The Dust Bowl,” Burns keeps himself to four concise hours and ably sifts the story out of the dirt. As the filmmaker chronicles farmers in the southern Plains during the Depression years, he looks more carefully at fewer people and distills deeper meaning.

Over 10 years, farmers tore up grasslands to plant more and more wheat, which soon was worth less and less. Next, winds blew away good soil and then more winds brought bad soil to the surface. In towns called Follett and Enid, the filmmaker has found important things to discuss about ecosystems and economies and how they collapse.

More important, Burns also presents novel-worthy characters against an apocalyptic backdrop.

One Job-like figure in the desertified Oklahoma Panhandle is a farm wife who describes endless chores in her elegant magazine dispatches.

Caroline Henderson, a homesteader with a Mount Holyoke degree, is perhaps Burns’s most apt protagonist. She sounds like Laura Ingalls Wilder with an adult awareness; imagine her as the first mommy blogger.

The land changes under Henderson’s feet. Amber waves become arid dunes. Morning in America leads to darkness by noon. She keeps somber vigil as Manifest Destiny comes to a screeching halt.

Not every viewer will be in the mood for a glimpse of the moment when thousands of poor Americans confronted what looked like end times. It’s unsettling, in the season of the “fiscal cliff,” to delve into four hours recounting some previous battered economy, when recovery stretched from wait-till-next-year to wait-till-next-decade.

Somehow, Burns takes care of viewer and character alike. For sure, the pain of infanticidal winds addles the brains of both farm marms and PBS viewers. Hack coughs lead to “dust pneumonia,” which claimed one family’s youngest girl and eldest matriarch in the same week. On the day of their double funeral, a massive storm engulfed mourners, compounding the pain.

That Palm Sunday devastation, in 1935, blew Plains dust all the way to Franklin Roosevelt’s desktop in the Oval Office, and the viewer can practically feel some film of inescapable particles settling, even after the documentary’s gusts have waned. As narrator Peter Coyote pulls back to a wider world, the discussion takes a needed break, turning to Washington players such as Henry Wallace and Harold Ickes, New Deal Cabinet members who debated whether to plow anew or abandon for good, respectively.

As ever, the screen scans historic images — strong, clear, artful ones. Photographer Dorothea Lange trains her lens on wind-whipped faces. Burns knows by now how to pull emotion out of first-person documents and underscores the testimony with piano chords and violin whines. Woody Guthrie finds his voice. And one of many older survivors recalls her mama’s hymn that hoped for “higher ground.”

Obviously, there are American themes of endurance and pluck, but also hype and hubris. In on-camera testimonies, unsparing eco-historians such as Timothy Egan make sense of the sadness, with ample narrative skill. A viewer will understand arcana about soil conservation and grassland water retention, plus how the government came to pay farmers not to farm, a policy that endures.

Wheat prices soar and sink, and fields of dreams become nightmare landscapes. When survivors finally overcome starvation and disease, many pack up and head to California. There, real-life Tom Joads look as hearty and humble as Henry Ford but get mocked as unwashed and defeated Okies.

“The Dust Bowl” is worthwhile not merely as it documents past perseverance but also as it informs future struggles. Leave it to Burns, our mop-topped maestro of American fact, to find the heroine, Caroline Henderson, who can speak for herself and also bring it all home: “Behind the characteristic American nonchalance, one detects a growing anxiety, especially about the coming winter.”



The Dust Bowl

(two hours each night) Sunday and Monday
at 8 p.m. on PBS

Monday, November 5, 2012

Amarillo Police seek bank robber: video released


On 11-5-12, at 12:30 PM, officers responded to a robbery alarm at First Bank Southwest at 5701 SW 34th . Officers found that a male suspect entered the bank’s front door and approached a female teller.

He had a dark colored handgun in his hand. He also was carrying what appears to be a red gym bag. The suspect pointed the gun at the employee and demanded money.

The bank teller placed money in the bag. The robber then left through the front door. A witness saw him run from the bank to an alley east of the bank and south of 34th. He got into a white, single-cab older model pickup parked in the alley and left eastbound.

The robber was a male about 5ft. 9 inches tall. He was wearing a blue hooded windbreaker type jacket with the hood up over his head, a white mask, gloves, and blue jeans.

No arrests have been made and there were no injuries. If you have any information on this robbery or believe you may have seen the suspect or vehicle, call the Amarillo Police Department at 378-3038 or Amarillo Crime Stoppers 374-4400.

Amarillo man arrested for possession of controlled substance after Sunday morning search.


On Sunday November 4th at approximately 6:37am, officers were dispatched to the 7000 block of Imperial on a 911 hang up.

Upon arrival officers began speaking with a female occupant of the residence who stated she felt someone had broken into the house during the night. 

The female then invited officers inside the house. Once inside officers identified all the occupants of the house and tried to assess what the nature of the call was. 

Officers were given consent to search the residence, where they located numerous pieces of narcotic paraphernalia and a small amount of meth.

A shop located in the back yard of the residence was also searched. Inside the shop, officers located a stolen I-pad and a stolen digital camera. Both of these items were stolen in auto burglaries that occurred in residential neighborhoods in the past few months. Further searching in the shop area reveled a small plastic baggie with what appears to be methamphetamines.

The baggie weighed approximately 8 grams. The male occupant of the house was arrested and transported to Randall County where he was booked for Possession of a Controlled Substance over 4 grams – under 200 and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. He is identified as Kristopher Donald Mixon W/M 42 DOB 11-5-69. A second male occupant was arrested for outstanding traffic warrants.

BREAKING: Bank Robbed in SW Amarillo

PD is on the scene of a 12:30 PM bank robbery at First Southwest Bank at 5701 SW 34th (near 34/Bell). Initial information is that the suspect fled in a white, older (possibly 1970's) single cab pickup that had been parked in an alley off of Atkinsen, east of the bank. 

Early suspect description is unknown race male wearing blue hooded jacket, gloves, some type of white mask. Anyone in the area that saw a pickup parked or prowling near the bank is asked to notify the APD at 378-3038. More detail will follow as it is available.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Union Pacific 844 rolls into Amarillo


Click to enlarge 

(C) Steve Douglass 









video



Union Pacific’s last steam engine train, No. 844, rolled through Amarillo Saturday, as part of its 150th birthday celebration tour.


The train made a service stop in Amarillo just after 12:30 PM.

The 454-ton train left Houston on Oct. 27 and is scheduled to arrive back to its home in Cheyenne, Wyo., on Nov. 8.









Steam locomotive to visit Amarillo


AMARILLO — Union Pacific’s last steam engine train, No. 844, will roll through the Texas Panhandle this weekend during its 150th birthday celebration tour, said Raquel Espinoza, the company’s director of corporate and media relations.

The train’s team will make a service stop in Amarillo at 11:45 a.m. Saturday at 83 S. Pierce St. People cannot board the train, Espinoza said.

The 454-ton train left from Houston on Oct. 27 and is scheduled to arrive back to its home in Cheyenne, Wyo., on Nov. 8.

“It’s a rolling piece of history,” Espinoza said.
The locomotive was delivered in 1944 and has hauled freight and passengers. More recently, the train has served as the railroad company’s “goodwill ambassador,” making appearances at museums and heritage celebrations, according to a news release.

Union Pacific connects 23 states, mainly in the western part of the country, by rail and gives freight solutions and expertise, the news release said.
It’s neat to see generations of families come together to visit No. 844, Espinoza said.

“It’s a firsthand look of how passengers used to travel before cars and modern locomotives,” she said. “It’s important to do what we can to preserve as much history as possible.”

Sam Teague, president of the nonprofit Railroad Artifact Preservation Society, said the group will hold tours of the Amarillo engine — Santa Fe No. 5000 — at Southeast Second Avenue and Lincoln Street from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

APD seeks robbery suspect

On 10-29-12, at about 9:45 PM, officers responded to a reported personal robbery on a parking lot at 3301 Amarillo Boulevard East.

 The victim, a black male age 43 of Amarillo, told officers that he was pulling into a convenience store parking lot when a white male standing at the edge of the parking lot waved to him as though he wanted him to stop the vehicle.

 He stopped to see what the man wanted. The man asked the victim if he could ask him a question, then opened the driver’s side door and tried to sit down in the car with the victim. When the victim told the suspect to get out of the car, the suspect produced a black pistol. He then reached over and tried to take the victim’s keys out of the car’s ignition.

 The victim started struggling with the suspect. He also drove toward the front of the store to try to attract attention and get help. The suspect grabbed the man’s wallet and cellular phone that was in the car seat beside the driver and ran north on Woodland from the scene. The victim was not injured and there have been no arrests.                                                                                                                                                  

Monday, October 29, 2012

Stanley Marsh named in 2nd sex lawsuit


A Houston law firm filed a second civil lawsuit Monday against Stanley Marsh 3, alleging Marsh 3 paid a 16-year-old to engage in sex acts with him at his Amarillo office and gave the teen Viagra so he could perform sexually for the Amarillo millionaire.
The suit, filed in 108th District Court on behalf of John Doe 2 by Houston attorney Anthony Buzbee, names Stanley Marsh 3, SM3 LLC, a limited liability company; Barb Wire LP, a Marsh-owned business; Marsh 3’s wife and guardian Gwendolyn “Wendy” O’Brien Marsh; David Weir, a Marsh associate; his son, Stanley Marsh IV; Amarillo Protective Services LLC, which provides security for the Chase Tower; and McCartt & Associates, which manages the Chase Tower, as defendants.
The suit said Marsh 3 paid Doe 2, a black teen, for various sex acts at Marsh 3’s Chase Tower office and in one instance at Marsh 3’s Toad Hall home at 801 N. Western St.
The lawsuit alleges Marsh 3 paid the teen a sum of money to [filtered word] in front of the Amarillo millionaire and watch pornographic movies.
Marsh 3, the suit said, knew the teen was 16 at the time and alleges that Marsh 3 made Doe 2 take Viagra so that he “could sexually perform at Marsh 3’s whim.”
The suit further claims that at least one sexual session with John Doe 2 occurred at the Marsh 3 family home, the suit said, and Marsh 3’s wife showed the teen into a bedroom where Marsh 3 was waiting for him.
Last week, an Amarillo woman sued Marsh 3 in Potter County, alleging the Amarillo millionaire gave her teenage son cash, vehicles and drugs to engage in sexual acts with Marsh 3 at his downtown Amarillo office.
Kelly Utsinger, an Amarillo attorney representing the Marshes and Weir, said Monday his clients plan to contest the suit in court. Attempts to reach Amarillo Protective Services and McCartt & Associates for comment were unsuccessful Monday.
“After many years of trial experience, I’ve found that it’s best not to form conclusions based on allegations contained in pleadings, but instead to reserve judgment until the evidence is fully developed in the courtroom,” Utsinger said. “As before, my typical practice is not to discuss pending litigation, but we will be filing responsive pleadings to deny the allegations.”
The suit said another of Marsh 3’s alleged victims reported the abuse to Amarillo police in the summer of 2012. Police, the suit said, contacted John Doe 2, who reported “Marsh 3’s abuse of him as well.”
The suit claims Marsh 3 targeted young men who abused drugs and alcohol and who were known to have had troubles with law enforcement.
Amarillo Police Cpl. Jerry Neufeld, said Monday the police department cannot confirm or deny anyone is a suspect until a criminal complaint is filed.

Breaking Forest Hills in lock down due to SWAT standoff.

Amarillo Police Department request that people avoid area of Amarillo Blvd. and N. Grand, North past NE 11th Ave. Parents with children at Forrest Hills School may pickup children on south side of school only. All others please avoid area. There are no reported injuries or arrest at this time. Additional details will follow when available.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Ballloon glow tonight at John Stiff Park


(C) Steve Douglass 



 Balloons will inflate after dark and use there fire burners to light up the night sky next to McDonald Lake nestled in John Stiff Park. Gates open at 5:00 PM and admission is free. Please come out and mingle with the Pilots and Crews as they set up to dazzle your eyes and cameras with a beautiful show. Dress warmly as the nights can get cold.

The event is part of the Pirates of the Canyon annual balloon festival that takes place this weekend.
For a full schedule of events click HERE 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Pirates Of The Canyon balloon rally debuts flying shoe


AMARILLO — This year’s Pirates of the Canyon balloon rally will see the official Amarillo debut of the first special-shape balloon that will call the city home.
Pirates organizer Chris Jones purchased the Old Lady in the Shoe last year and got her flight-ready in the spring. He flew her at the recent Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta but, outside a brief test flight, he plans to have the Old Lady officially make her bow at this weekend’s seventh-annual Pirates rally.
Balloonists will be at John S. Stiff Memorial Park, 45th Avenue and Bell Street, for a variety of activities on Friday and Saturday before closing out the weekend with a mass sunrise ascension Sunday at Palo Duro Canyon State Park.
At 147 feet tall, the old gal and her big boot are about two times taller than most special-shape balloons, Jones said, and she weighs about 1,000 pounds, four times the weight of most of her peers.
“She’s got a lot of air in her,” Jones said. “One of our goals is to figure out what size bra she would wear.”
The balloon also features 12 children, including one on the roof of the boot who moons the crowd and one who’s hanging on for dear life from a shoelace.
“She’s definitely a conversation piece,” Jones said.
The Old Lady is a challenge to fly, he said.
“When she gets in different layers of wind, she’ll spin like a top,” Jones said. “It gets dizzying.”
The weekend’s activities kick off at 6 p.m. Friday with a balloon glow around McDonald Lake at Stiff Park. Balloonists are scheduled to take part in a mass sunrise ascension from the park at 6:30 a.m. Saturday.
Activities on Saturday continue through 4 p.m., including food vendors, demonstrations from Amarillo Radio Kontrol Society and Flying Dutchman Boat Club, and tethered balloon rides. Balloons will launch around 3:30 p.m. following trick-or-treating for children at 2 p.m.
The rally ends with the planned sunrise ascension at the canyon.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Amarillo teen charged with manslaughter


Prosecutors charged an Amarillo teen Tuesday with manslaughter after authorities said he raced another car down Interstate 40 and struck a woman’s SUV, killing her.
Edwin Elias Ortiz, 19, also was charged with accident involving personal injury or death in the May 5 collision that left Mearlene Hooker Scott, 77, dead, according to court records.
The manslaughter charge, a second-degree felony, carries a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine, and the accident charge, a third-degree felony, is punishable up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Refueling tanker declares emergency - lands in Amarillo.

A KC-135 tanker from Altus AFB declared an in-flight emergency and diverted to Amarillo after its' stabilizer froze up during an aerial refueling mission over the Texas Panhandle.

 Speaking under conditions of anonymity the pilot said "This was the second time today the stabilizer froze. The first time iit was temporary - the second not so much." The stabilizer is the large movable surface on tail the aircraft that steers the plane.

 If for any reason the stabilizer becomes locked, the aircraft can be steered by using wing flaps and engine thrust.

However, steering the large aircraft in this manner is not ideal. Turns have to be wide and very slowly. GASSER 13 declared an in flight emergency and was diverted to Amarillo. The airspace was cleared as the large aerial refueling tanker made wide turns to line up with the long runway 22 at Rick Husband Int Airport. AFD was called out to meet the tanker (which was filled with jet fuel)as a precautionary measure.

 The KC-135 landed safely and without incident will be spending a few days in Amarillo, awaiting a crew from Altus AFB, in southwest Oklahoma, to repair the problem.

Photo (C) Steve Douglass

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

WTAMU Cheerleader killed by train



PHOTO (C) BRADY KENDRICK/VIA THE REPORTER'S EDGE
CANYON, TEXAS -- A 21-year-old West Texas A&M University cheerleader was killed early Tuesday morning in a train crash, police said.
According to the Canyon Police Department, officers arrived on the scene of a crash involving a vehicle and a train near the train tracks in the 100 block 4th Street just after midnight.
The student was identified as Shelbi McClure, officials said. McClure was a sophomore pre-nursing student from Lubbock, University officials said. She was also a cheerleader.
According to WT's student newspaper The Prairie, an administration-circulated email confirmed a candlelight vigil will happen tonight at 9 at the WT Pedestrian Mall.
She was pronounced dead by a Justice of the Peace.
An autopsy has been ordered and this crash remains under investigation, police said.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Child abducted during car theft located


Alert: UPDATE on Copper colored Toyota RAV4 SUV containing 1 month old child stolen. VEHICLE AND CHILD HAVE BEEN LOCATED

UPDATE: Child and vehicle were located at 5407 E Amarillo Blvd. A search for the suspect continues.

ORIGINAL RELEASE:
APD is investigating the theft of a copper colored 1998 Toyota RAV with black trim and unknown TX tags that happened at Amarillo Blvd. and Columbine about 40 minutes ago.

There was a one month old male child in the car seat when it was stolen. It was taken from a convenience store parking lot. There is no direction of travel known, more detail to follow when available. Please call 911 if you suspect that you have seen this vehicle.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

City Commission approves city-wide ban on driving while using hand held devices.


The Amarillo City Commission approved a citywide ban Tuesday afternoon banning hand-held divices while driving, 4-1.
Commissioner Jim Simms cast the lone dissenting vote.
People can still use hands-free devices. The fine will be up to $200 if a driver is caught violating the ordinance.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

4 arrested after Amarillo nightclub riot

4 arrested after Amarillo nightclub riot: Four men were arrested early Friday morning after officers said the crowd at an Amarillo nightclub become disruptive.


Tasers had to be used to break up the crowd, police said.
Just before 2 a.m, police were flagged down by a witness near Pink's Night Club that said five men were overheard talking about being involved in a shooting. Officers said they located the group in a nearby parking lot. As officers approached the men they then took off running, police said.
The men were soon located at Tatum's Night Club in the 800 block of South Polk.
Police escorted 21-year-old Brashaud Keon Evans outside to speak with him. When they were outside police said 21-year-old Aaron Dathan Davis grabbed Evans arm and tried to get him away from the officers.
Davis was then taken into custody, police said.
Officers said that as they were explaining their actions, Davis and other bar patrons started yelling at them.
Bryson Shamael Evans, 22, started yelling and enticing others to join the crowd, police said. He was placed under arrest for inciting a riot.
Police said while arresting Evans, 20-year-old Thomas Edward Brown, Jr., stepped up and shoved an officer in the chest. He was trying to prevent the officer from arresting Evans, police said.
Brown was then taken into custody. As he was being handcuffed, police said Davis then became irate and jumped on the back of an officer and began punching the officer in the head with his fist.

Monday, September 10, 2012

South Texas drug bust leads to Amarillo home ...


AMARILLO — A hand-drawn map seized in a South Texas marijuana bust and a six-figure cash trail led Randall County investigators on a hunt to an Amarillo house.
After a months-long investigation into the finances of Jessie Sierra III, also known as Jesse Sierra III, authorities filed a seizure notice last week for the house at 3302 S. Hill St. — a home investigators said was purchased with drug money. The affidavit alleged Sierra, 32, bought the house with proceeds from sales of methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana and Ecstasy.
Federal authorities in October landed the map that pointed to the Hill Street home, what one suspect described as a “stash house where they were taking the marijuana,” court records show.
The border drug bust and other sources sparked narcotics investigators’ review of Sierra’s finances, Randall County Criminal District Attorney James Farren said.
Authorities reviewed Sierra’s bank statements showing he deposited more than $151,000 in a Wells Fargo account from late 2005 to June — cash they said he reaped from drugs sales. Sierra had applied for multiple lines of credit for car purchases and lied about his employment and income on the applications, investigators said.
Sierra’s monthly expenses often exceeded his legal monthly income during that same period, court records showed.
The fiscal investigation began earlier this year when Sierra’s defense attorney asked Randall County prosecutor Robert Love to end Sierra’s 10-year-probation sentence early. Love consulted investigators, who told him they’d heard Sierra was still selling “large amounts of both cocaine and marijuana,” the affidavit said.
In 2005, authorities executed a search warrant on the Hill Street house, where they found small traces of cocaine, drug packaging equipment and more than $2,000 in cash.
Sierra received the probation sentence a year later after pleading guilty to drug trafficking and money laundering, records show.
Randall County authorities tied Sierra and several others to more recent drug involvement after they executed another warrant Aug. 3. Investigators found Sierra’s cellphone with drug-related voicemails and contacts whom they knew to be drug traffickers, according to the court documents.
The home belongs to Felix Pacheco and is worth $101,556, according to county appraisal records. Prosecutors haven’t charged Pacheco with a crime.
Pacheco told investigators in a sworn affidavit he placed the Hill Street house in his own name “as a favor” to Sierra, court documents said.
Pacheco also told investigators he never paid any money for the house, nor did he live there, the affidavit said.
Bank statements showed the house was in Pacheco’s name, was bought with a $20,000 down payment and monthly mortgage payments of $743, mostly paid in cash, records show. Randall County prosecutors said they think Sierra made the payments.
Farren said he plans to file a motion to revoke Sierra’s probation.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Air Fair this weekend at River Falls Airport

Support Ministry Wings Aviation and turn your eyes to the skies at the Texas Panhandle's first-ever Air Fair and Car-nival on Saturday, Sept. 8!
Located at River Falls Airport on the northern end of Palo Duro Canyon, this fly-in air and car show features a performance by airshow pilot Ron Cain and his de Havilland Chipmunk, a large-scale RC aircraft performance by Johnny and Mark Cavitt, appearances by a Supermarine Aviation Spitfire, a T-34 Mentor, and DPS and LifeStar helicopters. 

The band Lifeless to Life will be performing alongside a variety of airplanes, helicopters, cars, trucks, motorcycles, and RC aircraft on display.
Best of all, admission to the show is absolutely free! (Donations accepted.)

*Bring your lawn chair. No coolers please. Drinks and food will be available for sale.








Storms bring welcome rain - but some damage to Amarillo



AMARILLO.CaOM "Area thunderstorms graced the Texas Panhandle with much-needed moisture without too much reported damage Wednesday evening, National Weather Service Amarillo meteorologist Lance Goehring said.

 About 7 p.m., the weather service recorded 0.39 of an inch of rain at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport, 0.47 of an inch northwest of Canyon, 0.09 of an inch six miles northwest of Fritch, 0.26 of an inch southeast of Pampa, 0.06 of an inch in Hereford and 0.44 of an inch in Bootleg, Goehring said. Residents reported wind damage at Southeast Park Complex at Southeast 46th Avenue and South Osage Street with at least one utility pole snapped and a tree uprooted, but no injuries were reported, Goehring said.

 Xcel Energy spokesman Wes Reeves reported 800 houses lost power in the Borger and Fritch areas Wednesday evening, but crews restored power to those houses in about an hour. The weather service warned of high winds, hail and flooding Wednesday afternoon as severe thunderstorms hovered above Potter and Randall counties, meteorologist Andrew Moulton said. “We’ve gotten reports of what we believe to be at least quarter-sized hail near (the Tradewinds area),” Moulton said. “We’ve measured over 60 mph winds in multiple locations, especially east of the city.” Residents also reported flash flooding near Westgate Mall, he said. READ MORE AT AMARILLO.COM

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cadillac Ranch painted blue in honor of prostate cancer awareness month


September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness month. 
Friends of Fogelberg reminds you to Think Blue too! Cadillac Ranch turns Blue for September's Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
One goal of this annual promotion is to spread the word that prostate cancer treatments available now are highly effective and survival rates approach 100 percent — when the cancer is detected early! This is an important message, considering that in the United States this year, approximately 241,740 men will learn that they have prostate cancer and nearly 28,170 will die from the disease. Likewise, 80 men in Cayuga County will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year, and eight of them will not survive it.
Prostate cancer, like most other cancers, usually has no symptoms in its early stages. With advanced disease, symptoms would typically involve difficulties with urination. While most prostate cancers cannot be prevented because of risk factors beyond a man’s control (such as age, race and family history), there are steps that can be taken to reduce risk for the disease. Eating a high-fiber, low-fat diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables daily, coupled with getting screened every year starting at age 50, can help reduce risk for both prostate and colorectal cancers. The American Urological Association supports a baseline screening at age 40 if there is a first-degree relative, such as a father or brother, with a history of prostate cancer. The decision to get tested is one that a man should make with his doctor following a careful discussion. This conversation should include not only the benefits and risks of screening, but a man’s personal and family medical history. Black men are at high risk, and face a one-in-three chance of being diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Medically underserved men are at highest risk for prostate cancer, due to lack of screening for the disease. Screening for prostate cancer consists of two steps: a doctor’s exam of the prostate gland, and a blood test that measures a protein made by cells in the prostate. The blood test is called a PSA, which stands for prostate-specific antigen. High PSA levels in a man’s blood indicate a prostate problem, but not necessarily cancer! Since neither of these screening techniques are 100-percent effective, it is the combination of the two that allows for the early detection of prostate cancer.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Video and photo from last nights storm in Amarillo.


Video still from the storm that caused wind damage and flooding in Amarillo last night. This was shot just east of Bushland of an isolated cell that was ahead of the line that may have been briefly tornadic.

Photo by Steve Douglass

Link to VIDEO here!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Center City Block Party Saturday!


The Center City Block Party opens this Saturday at 5 p.m. The party will be from 5 p.m. to midnight on Polk Street between Sixth Avenue and 10th Avenue.  Admission to the party is just $10 in advance if you buy tickets at United Supermarkets or or at www.centercity.org Tickets will be $15 at the gate on Saturday. 
 
Admission Gates are at 9th and Taylor and 6th and Polk.

Block Party will feature 27 bands on five stages and in a special VIP Area at the Courtyard by Marriott.

Join our VIP Party at the Courtyard by Marriott. Tickets are $40 and include reserved parking, air-conditioned comfort at the Marriott, a fajita bar, drinks, and entertainment from Andy Chase and Yvonne Perea! A limited number of VIP Tickets are available at the Center City offices at 1000 S. Polk St.

You don't want to miss this end-of-summer party!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Amarillo man dies after late night traffic accident.



On August 15, 2012 at approximately 11:56 pm Officers were sent to 100 Westgate Parkway on a motorcycle crash. Upon their arrival they discovered a subject lying in the roadway. Randy Baca Jr., WM, 27 had been eastbound on Westgate Parkway. He lost control of his 2008 Yamaha V-Star motorcycle. 

He struck a tree that is in the center median at this location. Baca died at the scene as a result of injuries he received in the collision. Justice of the Peace Debbie Horn has ordered a toxicology screen. It appears speed is a factor in this crash. Baca was not wearing a helmet.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Polk Street Cruise photos 08-02-2012

Click to enlarge 



Polk street after dark 


Cruising by historic Paramount building on Polk 


"Honk your horn!" 



Like cruising Polk in the 50s! 



Panorama inside a 1988 Lincoln 


Zoom - Zoom! 


Classy cruiser 


Jam on Polk! 





Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Annual Polk Street Cruise set for Saturday









Annual Polk Street Cruise is this Saturday- starts at Region 16 building at 58th and Bell and heads downtown. There will be hundreds of classic cars and folks lining Polk. Be there or be square!


LINK: Panhandle Council of Car Clubs 

Polk Street Cruise 2009 photos

Monday, July 23, 2012

Robbery chase ends in crash at gas pump


CONNECT AMARILLO : AMARILLO, TEXAS -- The suspect from an early Monday morning robbery led police on a chase down Interstate 40, police said.
It ended when police said the driver ran into a gas pump at I-40 and Ross.
At about 7:25 a.m., police responded to a possible robbery at the Toot-N-Totum in the 2600 block of Amarillo Boulevard East. Police said a black male in his 30s wearing a blue shirt and denim shorts along with white tennis shoes had robbed the store.
He wandered around the store for a few minutes before taking money from the register, police said. He fled in a White Cadillac with a black top.
Police said a witness was able to obtain a possible tag number from the suspect vehicle. An unmarked officer then observed a vehicle with a similar tag number traveling south on Ridgemere.
The unmarked officer followed the car until a marked unit could initiate a traffic stop, police said.
Police said the driver refused to stop and a chase ensued toward I-40. It continued on I-40 westbound until the vehicle exited at the Ross-Osage exit.
The driver cut through a parking lot at the northeast corner of a gas station parking lot. He crashed into one of the gas pumps causing a fire, police said.
A fire started and the unidentified suspect was taken into custody. He was first transported to the hospital for evaluation but was then booked into the Potter County Jail for Robbery and Evading Arrest in a Motor Vehicle.
This incident remains under investigation and police said this robbery could be linked to the one at 1600 Amarillo Boulevard East from earlier in the morning.
HERE SCANNER AUDIO OF CHASE AT THIS LINK 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Amarillo doctor accused of killing Lubbock doctor


LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — The family of Dr. Joseph Sonnier III had gathered in Louisiana for his funeral when they heard the news: Police had accused another doctor of paying to have him killed.
The doctor, Thomas Michael Dixon, was arrested this week and is accused of paying a business associate in bars of silver to kill Sonnier, who was dating Dixon's ex-girlfriend.
Family members who spoke with Sonnier in recent weeks say they knew an ex-boyfriend of Sonnier's girlfriend was causing the couple problems. The family's focus now, according to Sonnier's sons, is to pursue justice.
"Although there were many tears shed, there was also a sense of hope that our father's murder has been solved," Sonnier's two sons, Joseph IV and James, said in an email.
Dixon and the business associate, David Neal Shepard, are jailed on $10 million bail each.
Sonnier, 57, the chief pathologist for Covenant Health System in Lubbock, was found shot and stabbed July 11 inside his home in the West Texas city.
Five days later, police released an arrest warrant affidavit that accused Dixon — a well-known plastic surgeon in Amarillo, about 120 miles north of Lubbock — of paying Shepard three silver bars worth a total of $9,000. Shepard's roommate told police that Shepard had confessed to the crime after a suicide attempt.
Dixon has been described as having some sort of business relationship with Shepard, though Lubbock Police Capt. Jon Caspell said he didn't think Shepard was working in Dixon's medical practice. Police believe Sonnier and Dixon may have known each other separate from the woman, though family members believe the two doctors did not.
Joseph Sonnier IV, one of Sonnier's sons, said in an email that none of his family knew either Dixon or Shepard specifically.
Shepard told his roommate that he broke into Sonnier's home through a window and shot him several times with a gun Dixon had given him, the affidavit said.
An attorney for Dixon, Dan Hurley, has said the doctor will fight the "untrue" accusations. Police said Wednesday that Shepard did not yet have an attorney.
A former business partner of Dixon, Dr. Rouzbeh Kordestani, told the Amarillo Globe-News that Dixon could at times have trouble controlling his temper. But, Kordestani said, he didn't believe Dixon was violent.
"(Dixon has) had anger issues in the past where he's yelled at people, this and that, and . takes a couple of days and comes back, he's OK," the chief of surgery at Northwest Texas Healthcare System said of Dixon who also had been a friend. "But not like this."
The two met while completing residency programs at the University of Oklahoma in the early 2000s. In 2004 they set up a practice in Amarillo, though by two years later their friendship and partnership had "soured," and the business relationship ended.
"I haven't spoken to Mike since 2006, even though I'm the chief of surgery and he's in my department," he told the newspaper. "It's ridiculous. We would pass each other in the hallway and we would just look away. The split was that harsh."
Kordestani didn't return messages left by The Associated Press on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Sonnier's family remembered him at his Monday funeral as a caring doctor, loving son and avid dancer who traveled to events across the country. Joseph Sonnier IV said his father's dance instructors attended the funeral and, at his request, performed a waltz as a tribute.
Joseph and James Sonnier's mother, Becky Gallegos, died two years ago in a suspected marital dispute with her then-husband, Juan Gallegos. Juan Gallegos turned the gun on himself and later died in a hospital. Joseph and James Sonnier, in their email, said both of their parents died "under equally tragic, yet totally unrelated circumstances."
"We have supreme confidence in the Lubbock law enforcement system and know that justice will be served," they said in their email.
___
Merchant reported from Dallas.

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