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County Approves Funding Right of Way Acquisitions for TxDOT Railway Overpass Improvement Project

CommCtArticle2014Brown County Commissioners approved a resolution Monday to contribute funds to help Texas Department of Transportation rebuild the Fort Worth & Western Railway overpass on U.S. Highway 183/84 southeast of Early.

County Judge Ray West stated that it was a “project that has been long needed.”

According to TxDOT Brownwood District Director of Transportation Planning and Development Jason Scantling, the overpass has had some “serious safety concerns.”

“For quite some time there have been some serious safety concerns, the roadway narrows from four lanes to two lanes and then back to four, and we have low overhead clearance of 14 feet 4 inches.”

Scantling described the project, stating that the railroad structure will be rebuilt to a higher overhead clearance of 16 feet 9 inches (although signage will show 16’ 6”) and that the pavement of the roadway will be widened through the railway overpass to accommodate two lanes in each direction.

A temporary “shoo-fly” railway structure will be constructed southeast of the current overpass, allowing trains to pass over the highway while the new overpass structure is being built.  This will be just built adjacent 8 feet from the existing overpass structure according to Scantling.  Once complete, the shoo-fly structure will be removed and rail traffic will be routed back to the newly constructed railway overpass.

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Felony Offenders Sentenced in District Court

BrownCountyDistrictCourtLogoDistrict Attorney Micheal Murray reports several felony cases were heard in Brown/Mills County District Court, Judge Stephen Ellis presiding.

Rosa Isela Cortez pled guilty to the felony offense of Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver and was sentenced to 17 years, Texas Department of Criminal Justice Institutional Division.

Delories Kay Barnett AKA Delories Berry pled guilty to the felony offense of Burglary of a Habitation and was sentenced to 4 years, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Institutional Division.  Further, defendant was on probation for the felony offense of Securing Execution of a Document by Deception and was adjudicated and sentenced to 6 months, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, State Jail Division.

Cesar Alberto Olguin, on probation for the felony offense of Possession of a Controlled Substance, was adjudicated and sentenced to 20 months, Texas Department Criminal Justice, State Jail Division.

Robert Gomez pled guilty to the offense of Tampering with or Fabricating Physical Evidence and sentenced to 20 months, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, State Jail Division.

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Fire Destroys Lake Brownwood Home Friday Evening

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Fire destroyed a home at Lake Brownwood Friday evening and its cause is still under investigation.

The fire was reported shortly after 5:30 PM Friday at a residence on County Road 569 at Lake Brownwood.  Firefighters arrived to find the home fully engulfed in flames.  Fire units from 5 area agencies responded to the fire and stayed on scene for several hours.

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Law Enforcement Blotter 1/9

LECSmLaw enforcement arrests and reports released Thursday & Friday, January 8-9, 2015.

Wednesday, January 7

*1:52 PM – Brown County Sheriff’s office received a report of a stolen camera.  The complainant told officers that she located the camera at a local pawn shop.

*4:50 PM – A complainant on County Road 292 reported that someone had stolen her information for a payday loan in another state.

*Brown County Sheriff’s office received a report of a dog bite from a stray dog.  The dog was found and quarantined.

*Early Police arrested 44-year-old Matthew Wayne Merz of Brownwood for DWI 3rd and evading arrest/detention.

Thursday, January 8

*2:08 PM – Brownwood Police apprehended a wanted person after the subject evaded police on foot in the 2400 block of Austin Avenue, according to police reports.  Andrew Chambliss Thrasher, 20, was arrested for evading arrest/detention as well as other offenses by the Brown County Sheriff’s Office.

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Update: Police Continue to Investigate Death of Unidentified Person in Fire

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Monday, January Update: Brownwood Police continue investigating the death of an unidentified person on Friday, January 9th and released the following update.

In the late afternoon hours of Friday, January 9, 2015, the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office conducted an autopsy on the unidentified person discovered in the early morning fire.  Preliminary reports indicate that the subject died from smoke inhalation and thermal burning.  The medical examiner’s office will continue with their work and has moved the body to their Identification Division.

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Brownwood Art Association to Host Letterpress Demo Saturday

BAADEmo_TinaHowardThe Brownwood Art Association will host their monthly demo this Saturday featuring a letterpress demo with Tina Howard.

The event will be held at the Brownwood Art Center at 215 Fisk Street in Downtown Brownwood on Saturday, January 10th from 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM.  The demonstration is free and open to the public.

Tina Howard has been a letterpress printer since 2005.  Her unique demonstration will focus on methods of printing art with letterpress machines and techniques, both historical and modern.

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Mayor Stephen Haynes to Give State of the City Address January 16th

Stephen_Haynes_2011Brownwood Mayor Stephen Haynes will give his annual State of the City address at the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Friday, January 16th.

The luncheon will take place at the Coggin Avenue Baptist Church Connection Center from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM. Cost is $15 per person and includes lunch.

Mayor Haynes will recap the city happenings for 2014 and will talk about upcoming projects for the new year.

The luncheon, sponsored by Oncor, is open to the general public. Reservations are required and payment can be made in advance at the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce or at the door.

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Felony Offenders Sentenced in District Court

BrownCountyDistrictCourtLogoDistrict Attorney Micheal Murray released information regarding several felony cases that were recently heard in Brown/Mills County District Court, Judge Stephen Ellis presiding.

Isaac Eli Alvarez pled no contest to the felony offense of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and was sentenced to 2 years, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Institutional Division.  Further, Alvarez pled no contest to the state jail felony offense of possession of a controlled substance and was sentenced to 12 months, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, State Jail Division.

Craig Coulter Stevens pled guilty to the felony offense of theft over $20,000 under $100,000 and was sentenced to 7 years, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Institutional Division.

Berkley Wade O’Brien pled no contest to the felony offense of theft under $20,000-Metals and was sentenced to 2 years, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Institutional Division.

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Applications Being Accepted for Next Citizens Police Academy

BPDpatchSmallThe City of Brownwood Police Department will be hosting another Citizens Police Academy (CPA), and the department is accepting applications until Friday, January, 16, 2015.

The purpose of the CPA is to open the doors of the department and give the community an opportunity see what police do for the city of Brownwood.  It’s an opportunity to visit with officers, learn more about procedures and policing philosophy and see how tax dollars are spent.

The CPA is held each Tuesday evening beginning January 20th, from 6:30pm to 9pm.  Classes are scheduled for 11 weeks and include a Saturday event where they go to the shooting range and demonstrate common police weapons.

Participants will hear from officers and employees who work the various divisions that make up the department.  Examples include Criminal Investigations Division, Patrol Division, and Communications.  They will also have guest speakers who discuss community resources and assist with the department on a regular basis.  Speakers come from various agencies such as the Sheriff’s Office, Fire Marshal’s Office, Code Enforcement and the domestic violence shelter.

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Law Enforcement Blotter 1/7

LECSmLaw enforcement arrests and reports released Wednesday, January 7, 2015.

Monday, January 5

*9:53 PM – Brownwood Police were called to the 800 block of 6th Street regarding an assault.

Tuesday, January 6

*10:18 AM – Brownwood police made a traffic stop in the 800 block of Melwood.  After investigation, 25-year-old Daniel Maldonado of Brownwood was arrested for possession of marijuana.

*10:30 AM – Brownwood police responded to the 2000 block of 7th Street regarding burglary.  The complainant told police that someone burglarized his vehicle in the middle of the night and took a knife, change and a handgun.

*11:30 AM – Brownwood police responded to the 2000 block of Slayden regarding theft.  The complainant stated that someone stole an iPhone.

*12:22 PM – A Brown County Sheriff’s deputy was dispatched to 2700 block of Belle Plain Street (Sportsman Center Storage Buildings) in reference to several storage buildings, which appeared to have their locks cut.  Contact was attempted with each of the owners. No suspect information was available at the time of this report.

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