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June 3, 2015 - Two Timpson residences were the focus of raids performed on Friday, May 29, 2015 involving several law enforcement agencies.

 Officers were seen removing evidence bags from the house located on McLaughlin StreetOfficers spoke with the residents and neighbors of the home on Todd Street.

Just before 4:30pm officers with the Center Police Department; Shelby County Sheriff's Department; Texas Department of Public Safety and Stanley Burgay, Constable Precinct 5, converged on a house located on McLaughlin Street near Timpson ISD with additional support from the Timpson Police Department.

Four individuals were detained and placed in handcuffs outside while officers searched the house, a pickup truck, car and other areas surrounding the building. No arrests were made; however, following the search which lasted just over an hour a number of evidence bags were carried from the home and the detainees were released.

Shortly thereafter the officers moved to a house located on Todd Street where they served another search warrant. The officers spoke with a man and a woman from within the house as well as two neighbors; however, no arrests were made at that residence either.

At this time no information has been provided by law enforcement, although requests were made by Shelby County Today. If and when information is shared it will be updated.

The reporting and monitoring of HAA5 is on a rolling twelve month average. It is anticipated to take at least two additional quarters before the notices are no longer required. Customers will receive notices with the required mandatory language until the rolling average is within established parameters. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Center City Hall at 936/598-2941.

June 3, 2015 - CENTER, Texas (June 3, 2015) – Center utility customers will soon receive postcard notices containing mandatory language for a system violation for haloactic acid (HAA5) levels. This violation is for the quarterly testing of chemical byproducts created during the water treatment and disinfection process.

The City has two sources of raw surface water – Lake Pinkston and Center Lake. Certain environmental factors can make raw water more difficult to treat, including increased temperatures in summer, large amounts of rain, or the lakes ‘turning over’. These problems with raw water quality can be managed in the treatment process through enhanced chlorination. “The City uses chlorine to treat raw water so that it is safe for consumption,” explained Marcus Cameron, Center Water Superintendent.

Chlorine ensures the removal of bacteria or other harmful organisms and controls the taste and odor quality.
“If the raw water is of a poorer quality, then we have to enhance our treatment process.” However, the extra chlorine can produce byproducts that the federal government mandates be monitored. After receiving the test results, the City increased the amount of ammonia used in the treatment process which eliminates the free chlorine that caused this violation.

Center City Manager Chad Nehring described a difficult water treatment process as a very delicate balancing act, “Staff has to make sure that enough chlorine is used to treat the water so it is not only safe to drink but also aesthetically pleasing. Unfortunately controlling taste and odor can lead to violations such as this.”

The reporting and monitoring of HAA5 is on a rolling twelve month average. It is anticipated to take at least two additional quarters before the notices are no longer required. Customers will receive notices with the required mandatory language until the rolling average is within established parameters. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Center City Hall at 936/598-2941.


June 2, 2015 - A John Deere tractor in the wrong lane was the cause of a crash south of Tenaha on U.S. Highway 96 Tuesday, June 2, 2015.

Texas Department of Public Safety State Troopers, Tenaha City Marshal's and the Center Fire Department were all dispatched to the scene of a railroad crossing bridge just south of Flat Fork Creek near County Road 4360.

According to Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Dustin Ramos, at 3pm he was dispatched to the crash involving a green 2009 John Deere tractor driven by Randy Pugh, 55, of Tenaha. The tractor was southbound in the northbound shoulder approaching the bridge on the wrong side of the road.

A tan 2000 Buick driven by Desmond Steadman, 48, of Tenaha was traveling northbound in the outside lane approaching the bridge and at the last minute the tractor came into the roadway causing the Buick to strike the right rear tire of the tractor. The Buick spun across the southbound lanes and struck the guardrail with the rear of the vehicle where it came to rest.

Steadman was transported to Nacogdoches Medical Center - Center Emergency Department for treatment of possible injuries. Pugh was issued citations for wrong side of road when not passing and warnings for no hazard warning.

 June 2, 2015 - Officer Michelle Ashworth is seen helping move a dog which occupied the Mountaineer involved in the crash to another vehicle.

Tenaha Street at the intersection of Henrietta Street has been the site of many crashes in Center involving rear end collisions and another has occurred resulting in several people being transported to the hospital.

According to Center Police Officer Michelle Ashworth, at 5:18pm a 2005 Mercury Mountaineer driven by Christina Hammers, 25, of Center was stopped facing north and was preparing to turn into Dollar General. A green 1998 Ford Explorer driven by Rigoberto Cornelio Morales, 24, of Center was traveling the same direction behind Hammers and rear-ended the Mercury. Both vehicles remained in the roadway.

Center police officers arrived at the scene and quickly began traffic control while ACE EMS personnel saw to the needs of those involved in the crash. Transported from the scene were Hammers, Morales and his passengers Anna Laura Mendez-Jimenez, 22, and a 5 month old boy, 2 year old girl, 5 year old girl, and 6 year old girl.

Morales was issued citations for unsafe speed, no driver's license, and four counts of unrestrained children. Hammers was issued citations for no driver's license and no insurance.

June 1, 2015 - Highway 87 was the scene of a two-vehicle crash south of Shelbyville Saturday, May 30, 2015.

According to Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Jimmy Faulkner, at 12:45pm a 2007white Dodge Nitro driven by Brandy Woodard, of Center was traveling south on State Highway 87 South with several Center High School students following her as she approached FM 147.

As Woodard neared a curve in the roadway a 2004 white Chrysler Sebring driven by Austin Wright, 18, of Center was traveling behind Woodard and collided with the back of the Nitro causing considerable damage to the Sebring. Both vehicles were able to pull out of the roadway

ACE EMS personnel responded to the scene but were refused by both drivers. No injuries were reported at the scene. Wright was issued a citation for failure to control speed and the Sebring was towed.

June 1, 2015 - A single vehicle crash occurred just before midnight on Friday, May 29, 2015 on State Highway 7 East coming into Joaquin ending with the arrest of the driver for driving while intoxicated.

According to a Texas Department of Public Safety crash report, 9-1-1 was called at 11:51pm concerning a crash on SH 7, one mile west of US 84. A 2006 Chevrolet Malibu driven by Donna Coates, age 53, of Tioga, Louisiana, was east bound when she failed to drive in a single lane crossing over to the left lane and then over correcting. The vehicle traveled into a ditch before flipping onto its top and landing upside down propped against a concrete culvert to a driveway.

The Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department and ACE EMS were both dispatched to the scene due an initial report of the driver being trapped inside the car. Upon arrival on scene, the driver was located standing outside of the vehicle. ACE EMS evaluated her condition and no injuries were reported.

TxDPS State Trooper Dustin Ramos was dispatched to the crash and upon investigation the driver was arrested for driving while intoxicated and booked into the Shelby County Jail at 1:40am.

Firemen remained on scene assisting with traffic control until the vehicle was overturned and the crash scene was clear.

June 1, 2015 - Jasper, Texas – East Texas Health Access Network (ETHAN), a non-profit organization that assists low income, uninsured and chronically ill rural residents with desperately needed healthcare services and programs, will be closing its doors on June 12, 2015. ETHAN has been serving the eight rural East Texas counties of Jasper, Newton, Sabine, San Augustine, Tyler, Hardin, Shelby, and Polk for over 14 years. ETHAN, a safety net provider and rural health network, collaborated with public health agencies, hospitals, healthcare providers, universities, businesses, civic groups and community leaders to bridge the gap in rural healthcare services.

“It is with deepest regret that I inform you of ETHAN’s closure on June 12, 2015. Rural health funding has been extremely limited in recent years and our area is not considered a priority. Everything possible has been done to avoid this situation but without funding we are no longer able to provide services. We will work with everyone to the best of our ability to ensure the best possible transition for both our partners, clients and our rural community at large,” stated Kim Harris, Executive Director.

Some of the programs and services provided by ETHAN included free Diabetes Education Classes, Prescription Assistance, Dental Services, Mammography, Nutrition Counseling, Durable Medical Equipment Program, Health Insurance Screening and Patient Navigation Services.

June 1, 2015 -Shelby County Sheriff Willis Blackwell reports that on Saturday, May 30, 2015 at approximately 2:10am, Investigator Kevin W. Windham attempted to initiate a traffic stop on a vehicle that was traveling East on FM 699. Upon initiating his emergency lights, the vehicle evaded and pulled into a residence on FM 699 in which the occupants were arrested during a felony stop.

Morgan MaGeeTony Smith Jr.

The driver was identified as a Tony Ray Smith, Jr, 31, of Center and the passenger was identified as a Morgan Ann Magee, 31, of Shelbyville. Subjects were found to be in possession of approximately 75 grams of Methamphetamine as well as two handguns. Smith and Magee were both transported to the Shelby County Sheriff's Department jail and booked. Magee received charges of Possession with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Controlled Substance, and for a warrant for Burglary of a Building. Magee's bond was set by Justice of the Peace Precinct 3 Margie Anderson at a total of $150,000 dollars.

Smith received charges of Possession with Intent to Distribute, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Evading in a Motor Vehicle, and Unlawful Carrying of a Weapon. Smith's bond was set by Justice of the Peace Precinct 3 Margie Anderson at a total of $160,000 dollars.

Investigator Kevin W. Windham was assisted by Shelby County Deputies, DPS Highway Patrol, and Center Police Department.



May 29, 2015 - Hurst Street and Arcadia Road (FM 138) in Center was the scene of a two-vehicle collision Thursday afternoon, May 28, 2015 which resulted in injuries to one driver involved.

At 4pm Shelby County Sheriff's Deputy Sgt. Derek Barbee was first to arrive on scene followed by the Center Police Department and Center Fire Department. Upon arrival both vehicles were located at opposite corners of the Hurst Street intersection with their drivers still inside.

According to Center Police Officer Maegan Wright, a white Chevrolet pickup truck driven by Daniel Smith, 28, of Nacogdoches was traveling south on Hurst Street when the brakes failed. A tan Chevrolet Tahoe driven by Jesus Orozco-Rivera, 34, of Nacogdoches was entering the intersection from the west on Arcadia Road as the brakes on Smith's truck failed and the truck collided with the driver's side of the Tahoe.

The Tahoe spun to the right and came to rest at the corner of Arcadia Road facing northwest. The truck continued to the opposing corner of Hurst Street where it came to a stop.

As ACE EMS, assisted by Nacogdoches Medical Center - Center Emergency Department (CED) personnel, worked to extricate Rivera from the Tahoe the Center Fire Department used Jaws of Life to gain access to the vehicle. Rivera was transported to CED for possible neck and back injuries. He was also issued a citation for driving without a license.

Officer Wright was assisted at the scene by Center Police Officer John Welch.

May 28, 2015 - Two miles south of Loop 500 on US Highway 96 a two-vehicle collision brought out the highway patrol on Thursday, May 28, 2015.

According to Department of Public Safety State Trooper Jimmy Faulkner, at 7:20am a 2009 white GMC 2500 pickup pulling a homemade trailer with a water tank was traveling south on US Highway 96 when it struck the rear of a 2010 silver Chevrolet Traverse. The driver of the GMC, Christopher David Link, age 32, of Center was cited for failure to control speed. The driver of the Chevrolet was Aaron Weldon Boles, age 79, of Center, and he was stopped with his blinker on to make a left turn into a private driveway when the collision occurred.

The Traverse exited the roadway to the left and came to rest beside the private driveway. The GMC came to a halt a little further down the highway from the crash in the middle of the southbound lane. Once DPS arrived the GMC was moved from the road.

No injuries were reported and both vehicles were towed from the scene.