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February 17, 2023 - The intersection of State Loop 500 (SL 500) and State Highway 7 East in Center was the scene of a three-vehicle crash Friday, February 17, 2023.

Officers with the Center Police Department and fire personnel with the Center Fire Department responded to the scene at around 11am.

A silver 1997 Chevrolet pickup truck appeared to have entered the intersection of SL 500 and SH 7 where it collided with a white 2020 Ford Explorer. After the collision, both vehicles traveled into SL 500 where it appeared the truck collided with a trailer being hauled by a white 2017 Peterbilt truck tractor.

According to Center Police Officers Jerry Payne, a blue 1997 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck driven by Davian Jones, 18, was southbound on SL 500 when he failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection with State Highway 7 (SH7) East. At that time a white 2020 Ford Explorer driven by Sheena Smith, 36, was eastbound on SH7 and was unable to avoid colliding with the Chevrolet, and both vehicles traveled into SL 500 on the south side of SH7.

The Chevrolet came to rest against a truck-tractor, with no damage resulting.

Smith was transported by ambulance to Nacogdoches Medical Center – Shelby Emergency Department for medial evaluation. Smith's minor passenger was not reported to have been injured.

A citation was issued to Jones for running the stop sign, Emergency medical services were on scene and provided assistance to the driver of the Explorer. The driver of the Chevrolet and the Peterbilt appeared not to have sustained any injury from the incident.

February 16, 2023 - Shelby County Constable for Precinct 3, Roy Cheatwood, reports the arrest of Aaron Conner Brazzel, 25, following an extensive chase which ended in Louisiana on February 11, 2023.

According to Constable Cheatwood, the vehicle involved in the pursuit had been reported to the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Department as stolen from a place of business there, and the owner of the 2004 GMC Yukon contacted Constable Cheatwood about the incident in the event the vehicle was on the Texas side.

After being informed of the theft, Constable Cheatwood had a suspicion of who had taken the vehicle and he requested the assistance of Taylor Fanguy, Constable Precinct 4, to assist him in the event the vehicle was located.

A family member of the vehicle owner contacted Cheatwood and reported seeing the vehicle on Truitt Cemetery Road off State Highway 7 East. As the officers commenced to searching area roadways, Constable Cheatwood requested the assistance of Shelby County Deputy Jake Gross in searching for the vehicle.

Constable Cheatwood was searching the area in the vicinity of the baseball fields located off State Highway 7 East when he pulled into the parking lot of the complex. At that time Cheatwood believes he and the suspect both spotted each other, and as he activated his emergency lights to attempt to stop the vehicle, the pursuit began.

With Constable Cheatwood engaging the driver to pull over, the chase began to travel CR 3193 where it connected to FM 139 and Deputy Gross joined in the pursuit on FM 139 to State Highway 7 where the vehicles then continued down U.S. Highway 84 traveling toward Logansport. The line of vehicles then traveled U.S. 84 through Logansport to Bogle Road and connected to Old Mansfield Road where the pursuit then headed back toward Logansport Bridge and onto Louisiana 764 to Louisiana 765 and then to State Line Road for around two miles before the more than 13 mile pursuit finally came to an end, when the vehicle crashed and flipped.

After confirming the driver was ok, Deputy Gross deployed an Asp baton and broke the window to help get him out of the vehicle.

DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Department and Louisiana State Police arrived and took over the scene. The driver was then transported by ambulance to Memorial Hospital in Mansfield where he was later released and arrested by the DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Department. According to Constable Cheatwood, upon questioning Brazzel he admitted to taking the vehicle and DeSoto Parish Sheriff’s Department charged him with theft of a motor vehicle, felony; and fugitive from justice, felony. According to jail information, he is being held on a $100,000 bond.

Constable Cheatwood intends to seek charges against Brazzel for evading arrest or detention with a motor vehicle, state jail felony. He encourages residents to be vigilant and aware of their surroundings, remember to remove keys from vehicles, lock doors and if something seems suspicious call law enforcement authorities.

According to Constable Cheatwood, the GMC is owned by Daniel Lawson and was used for flower deliveries in his business, which now will be impacted negatively by the loss of his vehicle.

Cheatwood stated this was the 60th vehicle recovered through his office since he's been in office. He expressed gratitude to Shelby County Deputy Jake Gross, Constable Taylor Fanguy, Constable Josh Tipton, DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Department and the Louisiana State Police for their assistance.

February 14, 2023 - State Highway 7 West was the scene of a three-vehicle crash Tuesday, February 14, 2023, what resulted in the death of one driver involved in the incident.

Emergency personnel with various agencies responded to the scene to come to the aid of those involved. The West Shelby County Volunteer Fire Department (WSCVFD) and Center Fire Department responded and provided assistance to those involved, as well as to divert traffic at the scene.

All four lanes of traffic were shut down to allow for vehicles to be cleared and for Texas Department of Public Safety State Troopers to investigate.

According to information released by the Texas Department of Public Safety, the preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 6:40am, a white 2014 GMC Acadia SUV driven by Michelle Acosta, 22, of Center with a 1-year-old child passenger was traveling west. The GMC was followed by a red 2010 Hyundai passenger car driven by Belva Hartsfield, 72, of Lufkin while a white 2018 Chevrolet pickup driven by Travis Edds, 36, of Nacogdoches was traveling east. 

It is reported that the driver of the GMC traveled into the oncoming lane and struck the Chevrolet. After impact, the Chevrolet skid into the west lane and was struck by the Hyundai. 

Belva Hartsfield was pronounced deceased at Nacogdoches Medical Center - Shelby Emergency Department by Donna Hughes, Justice of the Peace Precinct 1.

Acosta was transported to Nacogdoches Memorial Hospital for treatment of minor injuries. The 1-year-old child was not reported to have been injured and was transported from the scene by a family member.

Edds was not reported to have received injury.

This is an ongoing investigation and no further information is available. 

TxDOT, WSCVFD and Shelby County Sheriff’s Deputies continued to assist until the scene was clear while DPS Trooper Sgt. Aaron Shelton and Trooper Ashley White investigated the crash. 

February 13, 2023 - FM 415 is now shut down completely between CR 4123 and CR 4129!

Timpson VFD is on the scene of a rollover on FM 415. Please use caution and look out for first responders because the road is down to one lane and will be for a while!

February 13, 2023 - Over the week of February 5th through 11th the Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department had just 2 calls, with both coming in on Wednesday. Here’s a summary of the week’s events.

Wednesday morning at 7:51am the JVFD was called to assist with a potential DOA on the Doogieville Loop. It was quickly discovered that this was the scene of a crime and a investigation was opened by law enforcement. At this point there was not much that the JVFD could do and they were cleared from the scene. The suspect was brought into custody later in the evening.

Later Wednesday night at 8:58pm a call would be received for a diabetic patient possibly going into a diabetic coma on Childress Street. Members of the EMR team responded to check out the patient and Allegiance EMS arrived shortly thereafter. The patient was then loaded into the ambulance where they could be transported to a nearby emergency room. 

With that, this report will come to a close. The Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department hopes everyone has a great and safe week ahead.

February 10, 2023 - The Center City Council will meet in Regular Session on Monday, February 13, 2023 at 5pm in Council Room at Center City Hall. The following items are on the agenda for appropriate action:

I. Welcome Guests and Visitors.  

II. Public Hearing
A. Zoning Application 2023-1 -- Specific Use Permit at 637 Railroad Ave 

III. Approval of Minutes
A. Regular meeting on January 9, 2023

IV. Discuss Consider and Action on the Following:
A. Ordinance 2023-01 Amending the Zoning Ordinance for Specific Use Permit at 637 Railroad Avenue
B. Resolution 2023-05 TCEQ Water Rights Permit Signatory
C. Resolution 2023-06 Texas SmartBuy Membership 
D. Resolution 2023-07 Authorizing Adjustment to Benefit Waiting Period
E. Declaring Surplus Property
F. Request for City Membership
1. Texas Forest Country Partnership
2. Pineywoods Resource Conservation & Development Corp.

V. Items of Interest from Council and City Manager and Citizens – No Action Items.
A. Quarterly Cash & Investment Report

VI. Executive Session 
Consider entering executive session for legal consultation with the City Attorney and discussion of pending litigation, personnel matters and land acquisition with possible action related thereto upon reconvening in open session in accordance with Government Code Section 551.071, 551.072 and 551.074

VII. Adjournment.

February 9, 2023 - Shelby County Sheriff Kevin W. Windham reports the arrest of Carlos Caporali Manuels, 32, of Joaquin.

On Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at approximately 7:46 a.m., a call came in through 9-1-1 from an individual who stated a child was at her home saying his mother was deceased in their home. Deputies responded to the scene, located on Doogieville Loop in Joaquin, and found 32-year-old Yuri Diana Barahona, of Joaquin, deceased from what appeared to be gunshot wounds to the head.

Investigators secured the scene and began searching for Manuels due to information received that he had packed up and left.

At approximately 2 p.m., Tyler Police Department located Manuels 1998 Chevrolet S-10 abandoned at the intersection of Valentine and N Spring Avenue in Tyler.

At 5:51 p.m., Manuels called Smith County 9-1-1 stating he had been shot, and was requesting medical care. Manuels was transported to CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital in Tyler, and treated for his injuries. It was determined that the injuries sustained to his face were from a pellet gun.

Sheriff Windham sent investigators to the hospital to interview Manuels and take him into custody. Once he was released from the hospital, Manuels was transported to Smith County Sheriff’s Office jail facility and booked for Murder (F-1). Manuels has since been transported to the Shelby County jail where he is currently awaiting arraignment.

The SCSO would like to extend a huge thank you to Desoto Parish Sheriff Jaysen Richardson and his staff for the use of their mobile command center; Joaquin ISD staff for the compassion towards the victim's children; Golden Eye Clinic; Shelby County Children’s Advocacy Center; Tyler Police Department; Smith County Sheriff’s Office; Shelby County Constables - Zack Warr, Jamie Hagler, Roy Cheatwood, Taylor Fanguy, and Josh Tipton; Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Taylor Buster; Texas Ranger Jim Hicks; Tenaha Police Department; Joaquin First Responders; and Shelby County District Attorney Karren Price.

Ms. Barahona’s children are being cared for by an immediate family member. We extend our condolences to the Barahona family. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

February 8, 2023 - At 7:49pm, Sheriff Kevin W. Windham reports the successful capture of Manuels without incident in Tyler.

February 8, 2023 - Sheriff Windham reports, as of 4:25pm, the person of interest has been upgraded to a suspect in their investigation. The vehicle they were searching for has also been located in Tyler and Tyler Police Department has taken possession. Carlos Caporali Manuels is considered armed and dangerous.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts, or who has seen him should contact local law enforcement immediately. The Shelby County Sheriff's Department can be reached at 936-598-5601.

February 8, 2023 - Sheriff Kevin W. Windham reports that the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office is currently working a possible homicide on Doogieville Loop in Joaquin.

The SCSO is seeking the whereabouts of Carlos Caporali (Carlos Caporali Manuels) who is a person of interest in this case.

Carlos is believed to be driving a white 1998 Chevrolet S-10 bearing Texas plate PVL 8948.

If you have any information in regards to Carlos’ whereabouts, you are urged to contact SCSO Lieutenant Investigator Chad Hooper at 936.572.5045 or the SCSO at 936.598.5601.

No further information will be released at this time.

February 9, 2023 - West Shelby County Volunteer Fire Department (WSCVFD) had three calls lately outside of those worked with Center Fire Department. 

There was a crash on Highway 7 on the downhill side of Mcswain Hill January 28 at 7:30pm where a dead tree fell across the road and a gray GMC collided with the tree. There were no injuries but the truck was towed away.
WSCVFD provided traffic control for a vehicle stuck in the ditch on Highway 7 February 2 near Aiken after one of the many rain storms we’ve had recently. 

Finally on February 2 at 6:45am WSCVFD responded to a grass on County Road 1187 that was caused by a downed power line. Firefighters managed to knock it out before it spread too far.

Shelby County Sheriff Kevin W. Windham and DeSoto Parish Sheriff Jayson Richardson are seen conferring with Investigator David Haley and Investigator Aaron Jones.

February 8, 2023 - At 7:49pm, Sheriff Kevin W. Windham reports the succesful capture of Manuels without incident in Tyler.

February 8, 2023 - The search continues for a suspect in the death of a woman that was discovered in Joaquin on Doogieville Loop on Wednesday morning, February 8, 2023.

Shelby County Sheriff Kevin Windham has indicated as of 4:25pm the person of interest in the case has been upgraded to a suspect in what has been determined to be a homicide. He confirmed the victim to be a hispanic female.

Carlos Caporali Manuels

Carlos Caporali Manuels is being sought and the vehicle he was driving, a white 1998 Chevrolet S-10, was discovered Wednesday in Tyler where it was abandoned with the doors locked. Tyler Police Department has taken possession of the vehicle for processing. Manuels is considered armed and dangerous, and anyone seeing him should contact local law enforcement. The Shelby County Sheriff’s Department can be reached at 936-598-5601.

The Sheriff’s Department was contacted at 7:46am when a neighbor called for help, “a lady called and said that the neighbors kids, one of the children, there were four children inside the residence. One of the children came next door and told them that their mother was dead inside the house,” said Sheriff Windham.

Sheriff Kevin W. Windham (left) is seen speaking with Lt. Investigator Chad Hooper (right).

Sheriff’s Department Deputies have been investigating the scene and Shelby County Constables were searching for the suspect in the area.

Texas Ranger James Hicks arrived and combined efforts with local law enforcement in investigating the incident.

Melba Rodgers, Justice of the Peace Precinct 3, pronounced the victim deceased at the scene and Watson & Sons Funeral Home transported her.

DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Department shared their mobile command center in assisting with the investigation.

Sheriff Windham said how grateful he is to Sheriff Jayson Richardson with DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Department for supplying their mobile command unit to assist in the investigation and in preparation for the anticipated inclement weather.

Investigators are seen preparing to enter the house where the victim was located.

The incident took place on Doogieville Loop in Joaquin.

Tenaha Police Chief Scott Burkhalter assisted in gaining access to the vehicle which belonged to the victim.

Lt. Investigator Chad Hooper is seen entering the residence with Texas Ranger James Hicks.

Texas Ranger James Hicks is seen discussing information with area investigators and constables.

February 8, 2023 - On February 1, 2023, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality required the Choice public water system, 2100005 to issue a Boil Water Notice to inform customers, individuals, or employees that due to conditions which occurred recently in the public water system, a broken main on highway 96 north of 417, the water from this public water system was required to be boiled prior to use for drinking water or human consumption purposes.

The public water system has taken the necessary corrective actions to restore the quality of the water distributed by this public water system used for drinking water or human consumption purposes and has provided TCEQ with laboratory test results that indicate that the water no longer requires boiling prior to use as of February 8, 2023.

If you have questions concerning this matter, you may contact, Matt Di Verdi 936-591-4346.

February 1, 2023 - Due to a broken water main the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has required the CHOICE Water system, ID# 2100005 to notify customers that were without water February 1, 2023 on Hwy 96 north of 417,(anyone without water) to boil their water, prior to consumption (e.g., washing hands/face, brushing teeth, drinking, etc). Children, seniors, and persons with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to harmful bacteria, and all customers should follow these directions.

To ensure destruction of all harmful bacteria and other microbes, water for drinking, cooking, and ice making should be boiled and cooled prior to use for drinking water or human consumption purposes. The water should be brought to a vigorous rolling boil and then boiled for two minutes.

In lieu of boiling, individuals may purchase bottled water or obtain water from some other suitable source for drinking water or human consumption purposes.

When it is no longer necessary to boil the water, the public water system officials will notify customers that the water is safe for drinking water or human consumption purposes.

Once the boil water notice is no longer in effect, the public water system will issue a notice to customers that rescinds the boil water notice in a manner similar to this notice.

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.

If you have questions concerning this matter, you may contact Matt Di Verdi 936-591-4346