April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the Board Members of the Tyler County Child Welfare Board, along with Tyler County Sheriff Bryan Weatherford, displayed numerous crosses near the Tyler County Ballpark representing the many children who have been killed in Texas due to child abuse. Although the number of deaths are down from last year, it is still important to remember that child abuse can be deadly, and even one death is too many.
A Tyler County drunk driver pled on two cases, including a DWI 2nd, on April 4 in Tyler County Court and was sentenced to 80 hours community service, a large fine and other stipulations.
The plea was the result of an arrest from 2011. According to Dan Hunt from the District Attorney's office, Officer John Fuller of the Woodville Police Department, who is now Constable Fuller of Precinct 2, was dispatched to a reckless driver coming south on Highway 69 from the Doucette area into Woodville on August 9, 2011. Officer Fuller observed a vehicle matching the description stopped on the southbound shoulder of the highway just inside the Woodville city limits. The driver was standing beside the pickup truck attempting to put gasoline in the vehicle. Officer Fuller made contact with the driver, and immediately smelled a strong odor of alcohol on the driver's breath. He also noticed the driver was swaying when standing and was slurring his speech.
Officer Fuller identified the driver as Elie John Fruge III and called for a DPS Trooper to assist. Trooper Buck Odom of the Highway Patrol arrived and immediately noticed the odor of alcohol, swaying, and slurred speech, as well as bloodshot eyes. Fruge admitted to drinking one and a half beers before driving.
"The Trooper administered Standardized Field Sobriety Tests, and Fruge performed poorly," Hunt said. "Fruge submitted to a breath test at the Tyler County Jail. The results showed Fruge's Blood Alcohol Level was more than 4 times the legal limit."
Fruge was present in court on April 4, and pled on two cases, including the DWI 2nd from 2011. According to Assistant District Attorney Dan Hunt, Fruge got 2 years probation, including a fine of $1,000, 80 hours community service, an ignition interlock for the duration of probation, and an Alcohol/Drug Assessment and compliance with all recommendations, on the DWI 2nd. Three days incarceration in the Tyler County Jail were a condition, and Mr. Fruge received credit for three days he has already served. He also got 1 year probation on a unrelated Criminal Trespass case.
Three Tyler County deputies were dispatched to a disturbance in progress off Sample Road in Barlow Lake Estates recently. When Deputies arrived they observed a group of people in the roadway, including Ernie House, Bronson Davis, Joseph Davis, Justin Davis, Audra Oline Bolton III, Francis Dushoe and Sarah Bolton and several other people.
"Bolton and Joseph Davis were fighting at the time," said Chief Deputy Phil Ryan. "Bronson, Davis and Ernie House have had an ongoing feud going on down there, and alcohol was involved."
According to Ryan, someone had reported that there was a weapon involved, but no weapon was found on the scene. The fight began due to drugs and accusations that someone had tried to purchase drugs but did not follow through with the purchase. Threats and cussing ensued, and then the fight began.
"This ongoing agitating in Barlow Lakes is disruptive to the entire law enforcement process of the county because these people cannot act like adults," said Phil Ryan. "I want them to act like adults because every time we have to stop and go down there due to their childish behavior, there are other crimes that happen in this county, and it keeps us backlogged on that. When there is a disturbance like the ones in Barlow Lake, you can't just send one deputy when that many people are involved. So, every available deputy in the county has to go to Barlow. It is ridiculous, and these people need to stop acting childish."
Bolton was a danger to himself because he was so intoxicated and was arrested for Public Intoxication and Disorderly Conduct.
Bronson Davis, Joseph Davis and Justin Davis were issued Disorderly Conduct Citations. Francis Dushoe and Sarah Bolton were also issued Disorderly Conduct Citations.
Dorian Chandler Maloy of Woodville was crowned Queen of the 71st Annual Tyler County Dogwood Festival during ceremonies Saturday night at the Queen's Pageant and Historical play held at the Amphitheatre in Woodville. The Pageant caps three weekends of activities each year.
An elderly woman that Woodville Police Officer Lawrence Hicks refers to as a "repeat con artist"was arrested on March 31 after violating a criminal trespass order.
According to police, Patricia Arnett, age 79, of Woodville, has several Criminal Trespass warrants across the city and has been arrested several times. In January a criminal trespass order was filed preventing her from going back to Walmart, due to shoplifting issues.
"She showed up at Walmart and was arrested, despite her age," said Woodville Police Officer Lawrence Hicks. "She is not above the law."
A Tyler County Sheriff's deputy, along with a Woodville Police officer, were traveling south on South Magnolia on March 30 when they saw a beige truck, traveling southbound, turn without signaling. The deputy followed the truck onto Albert drive and initiated a traffic stop. The driver was identified as Christopher Montoya, age 19, of Woodville. He was trying to hide something on his person.
"Due to the area being known for drug use and sales and the suspicious behavior of the vehicle, officers detained Montoya for a narcotics investigation at that time," said Chief Deputy Phil Ryan. Montoya gave officers consent to search the vehicle and a shoe box containing marijuana seeds and particles was found in the back of the truck.
Montoya was placed under arrest at that time and told deputies that he had no other illegal substances, but additional marijuana was found stuffed in his pants.