Today`s Local News2018-01-12
Friday, January 12, 2018



LUMINANT OFFICIALY ENDS OPERATIONS

(MILAM CO) A major Milam County staple officially shuttered its doors this week. 

The Luminant Sandow Power Plant and its associated Three Oaks Mine is officially offline as of today. The closure ends a nearly 70-year run in Milam County. The closure was spurred on by a October 2017 announcement by Luminant that they would be closing not only the Sandow Plant, but also the Big Brown Power Plant in Freestone County. In that announcement, the company noted that both coal-fired plants would cease operations this month and that the viability of the plants made keeping them impossible. The loss of the Sandow Plant means roughly 450 employees will be laid off, though Luminant said this week that as many as 125 could be kept on hand to assist with reclamation work at the Three Oaks Mine. Last year, the company said that all impacted employees were offered severance benefits and outplacement assistance. Lumiant, and formerly Alcoa, had been the county`s single largest taxpaying entity. Within days of last year`s announcement, Milam County officials moved to submit an application to online retail giant Amazon in a bid to host that company`s 2nd headquarters on the Alcoa/Luminant land. A selection is expected to be made at some point early this year. 


KMIL LISTENER SURVEY CONTINUES

(CAMERON) Hey listeners, our KMIL listener survey continues through January. 

First, a huge thank you to the overwhelming response so far. But, we`re not done yet. If you haven`t filled out our online survey, I encourage you to do so. We want to make this your station as much as it is ours and that means we need your response. Log online at kmil.com and fill out the survey, it is a quick 15 questions that will help us determine the direction of our station. The survey is available through January 31st. Once the survey closes, we will be sharing the results and making some changes around here. If you want your voice heard, go online and take the survey. Thanks for listening and helping out. 


ABDUCTED WACO GIRL FOUND, 1 ARRESTED

(WACO) Waco Police now say a woman abducted Wednesday and thought to be in Falls County has been found safe. 

Police said Thursday that 19-year-old Gabrielle Rivera was found safe early Thursday morning and her cousin, 31-year-old Josephine Monrial, is in custody on charges of kidnapping and drug possession. Waco Police indicated that Rivera was released by her abductors at an HEB store in Bellmead. At this time, investigators consider the abduction and circumstances suspicious. Officers originally responded Wednesday night to a call in the 1100 block of North 6th Street in Waco and learned Rivera was abducted by Monrial. Officials believe Rivera was lured through false pretenses and may have been held against her will. Monrial was believed to be in the company of multiple men who are also likely involved in the abduction scheme. At least 1 other suspect has been identified, with authorities naming Richard Steen as a person of interest. The group was believed to have been in the Marlin area in Falls County. 


FATAL AUTO-PEDESTRIAN WRECK IN TEMPLE

(TEMPLE) Interstate traffic was backed up last night after a fatal auto-pedestrian wreck in Temple. 

Temple Police responded to a fatal accident in the southbound lanes of Interstate 35 about 9PM Thursday near mile marker 302. Officials said a woman was struck and killed in what is being called a hit-and-run accident. The name of the victim has not been released. No other details were available. The highway was moving again a couple of hours later. 


TEMPLE MAN SENTENCED IN MURDER CASE

(BELTON) A Temple man will spend time behind bars after sentencing this week in connection to a 2014 murder. 

The Bell County District Attorney`s Office said 20-year-old Manuel Leija, Jr. was handed a 38-year prison term on Thursday in 426th District Court. The sentence was handed down in connection to the 2014 shooting death of 22-year-old Julian Anguiano. Leija was just 17 years old at the time. Both Leija and 21-year-old Tamron Shores were indicted for murder in 2015 in connection to that incident. Temple Police say they were originally called in 2014 to the Wildwood Apartments on W. Adams in reference to shots fired. Officers arrived at the scene and found Anguiano slumped over in his car, having suffered gunshot wounds to the head and body. Authorities later tracked down and arrested Leija and Shores for the shooting. 


STOLEN APD WEAPONS FOUND DURING TEMPLE TRAFFIC STOP

(TEMPLE) Weapons stolen from an Austin police officer were found this week during a Temple traffic stop. 

Temple Police said Thursday that a routine traffic stop of an 18-year-old Belton man turned up a Taser and duty firearm of an Austin Police officer. Officials said the Austin cop reported his patrol vehicle had been broken into on Thursday in the 500 block of N. Loop 121. The Officer reported the incident to Belton Police, noting his weapons had been taken. The suspect, whose name has not been released, was taken to Bell County Jail. 


FRANKLIN SAFARI OWNER ARRESTED, INDICTED

(FRANKLIN) The owner of a drive-thru safari in Robertson County is in trouble with the law. 

A Robertson County Grand Jury on Wednesday handed Jason Charles Clay an indictment for Aggravated Assault Causing Serious Bodily Injury, a 2nd degree felony. Clay, who owns the Franklin Drive Thru Safari, was indicted in connection to the December 29th beating of another man. Officials said Clay turned himself in Thursday to authorities and bail was set at $10,000. Court records indicate that Clay is alleged to have struck a man in the head and face and kicked the victim during a fight. The victim suffered multiple injuries and serious medical issues. 


BIG BANK DEAL INVOLVES CEN-TEX BANKING COMPANY

(CENTRAL TX) A major Central Texas bank company is being bought up by a larger banking company. 

Mississippi-based BancorpSouth announced Thursday that is set to acquire First State Bank Central Texas. BancorpSouth, with nearly $15 billion in assets, is acquiring First State Bank`s $1.4 billion in assets, including a Louisiana-based bank. First State Bank, which was established in 1909 in Chilton, moved its operations to Temple in 1988 and currently operates 31 branches, including 3 locations in Temple, 1 in Belton, and 1 in Little River-Academy. The deal means First State Bank is joining BancorpSouth`s 250 branches in 8 states. First State Bank branches are expected to be re-branded later this year. Customers will also see new features and enhanced programs soon. 


MILAM APPRAISAL DISTRICT SEEKING AG INFO

(CAMERON) The Milam Appraisal District is currently seeking information from agricultural producers in the county. 

In a news release, the District is asking all producers to go online at milamad.org and fill out a questionnaire regarding agricultural leases, crop income, and expenses. The District will use this information to establish accurate information to develop local values. Without it, the District will have to rely on statewide information. Hard copy surveys are available at the Appraisal District in Cameron. 


TAX OFFICE ROCKDALE SUBSTATION CLOSING TEMPORARILY

(ROCKDALE) The Milam County Tax Office Rockdale substation is closing temporarily. 

According to the Tax Assessor-Collector`s Office, the Rockdale substation of the tax office is closed. To accommodate tax payers looking to make payments, the Cameron tax office will have extended hours on Wednesdays only from 8AM-6:30PM. The Tax Office also reminds residents that the last day to pay your 2017 taxes is January 31st. 


HOLCOMBE MEMORIAL MARDI GRAS BASH

(CAMERON) Tickets are now on sale for the 6th annual "Mardi Gras" bash to raise funds for the Christine Holcombe Memorial Scholarship Fund.  

The event will be held on Friday, February 2nd at Simon George Hall in Cameron. The event starts at 6:30PM and will include a Cajun food dinner, gun raffle, auctions and games for the kids. Adult tickets are $10 and children under 18 are $5. Tickets may be purchased at the Rockdale Reporter, the Milam County Extension Office, and Rodenbeck Farm & Ranch in Thorndale.

Donations for the auction can be dropped off at Ideal Poultry in Cameron. Over the past 5 years $65,000 in scholarships have been given to current college students from Milam County as a result of the Mardi Gras event. More information can be found on the Facebook page, Christine Holcombe Memorial Scholarship Fund. 


YOE POWERLIFTING

(CAMERON) Several Yoe High powerlifters fared well this past weekend at the Cameron Powerlifting Meet. 

On the boys side, 2 Yoemen ended up taking Gold medals in their respective divisions. Alex Aguillon and Adrian Lewis each won 1st place in their divisions. Kevin Avdic earned a 2nd place finish, with Joe Rangel, Joshua Lopez, and Alfredo Sierra also competing. 

On the girls side, Daejanay Bell earned the only Gold medal. She took 1st in her division. Faith Kistler and Yiele Contreras both earned 3rd place finishes in their divisions, while Selene Vargas also competed. 


POLICE REPORT

(CAMERON) Cameron PD reported 3 EMS call and no other activity.

(ROCKDALE) Rockdale PD reported 3 EMS calls and 3 fire calls:
--12:24PM, Milano and Gause FDs toned to pasture fire on FM2095
--2:19PM Rockdale FD responded to 903 Bushdale for a tree falling on a power line causing a fire.
--2:08PM, Milano FD called to debris in roadway on S. TX36.

(CAMERON) The Milam County Sheriff`s Office reported 4 new bookings:
--Fredrick Lavar Joshua, 39 of Cameron, for PI
--Denzel Renold Clifton, 25 of Cameron, for Aggravated Assault w/ Deadly Weapon, Bond Surrender, and Disregard No Passing Sign
--John Paul Murphy, 45 of Milano, for Continuous Sex Abuse of a Child Under 14
--Lancer Bart Wootan, 46 of Katy, housed for SAFP

There were 2 accidents reported in rural Milam County.
--wreck on US79 east of Gause. 
--wreck on US79/TX36. 

There are currently 130 inmates in the county jail, including 52 housed for Coryell County.


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