News

Fri
27
Jun

End to NRG/county squabble may be near

Limestone County commissioners learned at Monday’s commissioners court meeting that the NRG Energy Plant, whose 2013 valuation is in dispute in district court, has come to an agreement on its 2014 valuation, which it had also initially rejected.
The relationship between NRG and the county, which is usually positive, became strained in 2013 when NRG disputed the Limestone County Appraisal Board’s $724 million valuation of its power plant. That was a drop from the previous year’s valuation, of $765,765,000 for 2012. The prescribed method for resolving such differences is for NRG to file a lawsuit against the county in district court, which it did.

Fri
27
Jun

Man guilty of murder in woman's stabbing

A guilty plea was entered in the stabbing death of a woman in Mexia on New Year's Eve 2013.
On Tuesday, June 24, Manuel Armando “Nacho” Gonzalez pleaded guilty to the murder of his girlfriend, Christina Flores, and was sentenced to 41 years in prison. 
On Dec. 31, 2013, Gonzalez and Flores attended a party on Wilson Street in Mexia.  The couple argued as they left the party, then Gonzalez stabbed Flores multiple times. 
Mexia police responded to a disturbance call made after Gonzalez entered a home after the stabbing. They found him drunk, with blood on his clothes and with an empty knife sheath on his belt. 

To read more, pick up a copy of Thursday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

Fri
27
Jun

Pleas entered in Mexia tax fraud scheme

A plea bargain has been entered in federal court by two defendants while three others remain under indictment in a multi-count case alleging a Mexia tax preparation business for years filed false claims to the IRS on behalf of staff and customers.
According to documents from the U.S. District Court in Waco, the government alleges people who worked at A-Kind Bookkeeping and Tax Service in Mexia, roughly between Jan. 1, 2007 and at least April 15, 2010, filled out tax forms that made claims to which their customers weren’t allowed, often involving bogus farm or business losses.
Indicted April 8 on multiple fraud charges were Joshua Duane Stifle, Cassandra Renee Egbert, April LeAnn Morgan/ aka Ercanbrack, and Lana Renee Catalena/ aka Venable.
A superceding indictment filed June 13 charged conspiracy against Patricia “Sissy” Foley, the owner of A-Kind Bookkeeping, and her daughter and employee, Cassandra Egbert.

Mon
23
Jun

Let freedom ring


Men at the Juneteenth celebration at Mexia’s Booker T. Washington Park hang a display representing the Emancipation Proclamation on the pavilion before the ceremonies on Thursday, June 19. Shown here, l-r, are Herman Henderson, of Dallas, Reginald Murphy, of Mexia, Fred Smith, of Doyle, and Billy Touchstone, of Houston. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Men at the Juneteenth celebration at Mexia’s Booker T. Washington Park hang a display representing the Emancipation Proclamation on the pavilion before the ceremonies on Thursday, June 19. Shown here, l-r, are Herman Henderson, of Dallas, Reginald Murphy, of Mexia, Fred Smith, of Doyle, and Billy Touchstone, of Houston.

Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Mon
23
Jun

Mexia rodeo aims to stay top UPRA event


Mexia-area youth get to show their rodeo skills in youth-only events before the main rodeo, such as this young man roping a calf in last year’s event. This year’s 84th Annual Mexia Rodeo will take place June 26-28 at the Mexia Rodeo Grounds on FM 39. Mexia News file photo

Organizers of the 84th Annual Mexia Rodeo are urging residents to come be a part of the fun and excitement this Thursday-Saturday, June 26-28. The rodeo is on a roll, having been voted the United Professional Rodeo Association’s “Rodeo of the Year” the past nine years, and is doing everything it can to make this year No. 10.
So many people want to compete in the event that they couldn’t fit in to the three rodeo days, so slack events take place Wednesday evening, when extra entrants compete for a place in the regular rodeo times.
Contestants from all over the country and state flock to the Mexia Rodeo because of all the cash prizes awarded. There is $16,500 added to the regular cash prizes, plus $2,000 added money for wild cow milking and $1,000 added for double mugging. Contestants also earn points since the Mexia Rodeo is sanctioned both by the UPRA and the Cowboy Professional Rodeo Association.

Wed
18
Jun

Murdered Mexia teen’s parents try to stop killer’s parole


Roy and Florence Jones, whose daughter, Kathy, was murdered June 3, 1969, look through her high school yearbook in the kitchen of their Mexia home. The couple is asking people to help keep her murderer behind bars by writing the Parole Board. Carlos Don Stultz was placed on parole June 3, the 45th anniversary of the date he killed the 17-year-old girl. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Carlos Don Stultz, convicted murderer of Mexia teen Kathy Elaine Jones in 1969, is being considered for parole again, and family and friends of the victim are asking Limestone County residents to speak up against the possibility.
The anniversary of Kathy Jones’ murder was just a few days ago – June 3 – and the memories of that terrible time return to her parents, Roy and Florence Jones, as well as thoughts of the many life events that didn’t happen for Kathy since her life was cut short so early.
“I still can’t talk about it. I can’t; I can’t,” Florence Jones said last week, her face stricken and her voice choked with emotion.
“We would appreciate anyone that would write the Parole Board and make a comment on whatever their feelings are at the time,” Roy Jones said, “because it would get input from other people rather than just us.”
“He needs to be done away with because he might kill somebody else,” said Florence Jones, calmer now.

Wed
18
Jun

Juneteenth celebration wraps up today


Singers entertain the crowd at last year's Juneteenth celebration, under the roof of the open-air tabernacle at the lakefront site. Today is the culmination of the annual celebration at Booker T. Washington Park on Lake Mexia, with events starting with a parade at 10 a.m. at the park. Contributed photo

Today marks the culmination of the annual Limestone County Juneteenth celebration, with the memorial program taking place this morning.
Events, which began Saturday, take place at Booker T. Washington Park, previously known as Comanche Crossing, originally located on the banks of the Navasota River.
Today's events begin with a parade at 10 a.m. at the grounds of the park, followed by the memorial program at 11 a.m.
"We'll read the Emancipation Proclamation, and have a speaker, choirs and people singing," said Renee Turner, one of the many organizers of the event. "This year, we're going to do a reenactment of the reading of the Emancipation Proclamation as seen through the eyes of Walter Cotton, a teacher, writer and artist who lived in Mexia."

Mon
16
Jun

MSSLC's status helps keep it open in troubled times


Customers Carol Patin, of Groesbeck, at right, and Betty Rowley, of Mexia, at rear, choose plants for their gardens from thousands of possibilities at Mexia State Supported Living Center’s greenhouse. Residents of the MSSLC learn gardening skills by working in the greenhouse, and the plants they grow are sold for quite reasonable prices, with seedlings 25 cents, 5-inch potted plants $1 and hanging baskets $6. Mexia News photos/Roxanne McKnight

The Mexia State Supported Living Center is Texas’ only forensic SSLC, a characteristic that may cast a negative shadow on the campus but also helps protect it from the continual threats of closure that hang over all the state’s SSLCs.
MSSLC Director Mike Davis spoke to the Mexia Lions Club recently on what’s going on at the Mexia campus and also on what he’s doing to improve the SSLC’s reputation in Mexia.
The resident population of the MSSLC is about 320, he said, far lower than in years past, and Davis takes a positive view of that.
“If you look at all 13 SSLCs, Mexia doubles everyone else when it comes to placing residents out in the community,” he said. “That means we’re doing an excellent job of trying to get the residents out where they can actually go ahead and have successful lives.”

Mon
16
Jun

LCSO gets donation, will start memorial fund


XTO Energy production foreman Branden Monico presents a $5,000 donation on behalf of the company to Limestone County Sheriff Dennis Wilson at the June 9 meeting of the Limestone County commissioners court. Wilson said he planned to combine the funds with private donations to build a memorial at the Sheriff’s Office to fallen officers. Shown here seated, l-r, are Commissioners Bobby Forrest, Jerry Allen, William ‘Pete’ Kirven and John McCarver; standing, l-r, are County Judge Daniel Burkeen, Monico and Wilson. Mexia News photo/Roxanne McKnight

Limestone County Sheriff Dennis Wilson plans to create a memorial to fallen officers starting with a $5,000 donation XTO Energy made to the Sheriff’s Office at last week’s meeting.
Branden Monico, a production foreman for XTO, presented the check at the June 9 commissioners court meeting, and the court accepted it for the record, which is a requirement of donations to a county entity.
Wilson explained to the court that when Monico told him several months ago that the company wanted to make the donation, he told Monico the steps to take.
“I feel very honored and blessed that XTO chose the Limestone County Sheriff’s Office to recognize and honor with their donation,” Wilson said.

Fri
13
Jun

Pedestrian hit by car on Hwy. 14

A Mexia man was rushed to an area hospital last week after he was hit by a car and thrown 30 feet on Hwy. 14 in Mexia.
The accident occurred Friday, June 6, a few minutes before 10 p.m. in the 600 block of North Martin Luther King Jr. Hwy (Hwy. 14).
According to the Mexia Police report, Toni Phelendia Jackson, 37, of Glenn Heights, was driving south in the right lane of Hwy. 14 in a gray 2000 Nissan Altima with her 7-year-old daughter when she hit the man.

To read more, pick up a copy of Saturday's The Mexia News, or subscribe to our e-edition.

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