|Abi Davis and Trevor Knox were crowned Homecoming King and Queen at Deweyville High School.
The Pirates defeated Hemphill 34-16.
See more scores on the KOGT Sports Page.
A 52-year-old man from Orange was arrested Thursday in Calcasieu Parish for aggravated cruelty to an animal in connection with beating an 8-week-old puppy to death with a hammer. The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office said Steven R. Blount has a $25,000 bond on the charge. The sheriff's office said employees at an industrial plant called deputies on October 15. They said a man had a puppy in his truck and was leaving it there while he went to work. The man's co-workers heard the puppy yelping and questioned him about leaving the dog. The workers saw him go back to the truck, get a plastic bag and then go into the cab of the truck. Later he went to the plant gate and set the plastic bag with the dead puppy near a trash can. Witnesses asked him about it and he put the bag in a dumpster. The co-workers called the Calcasieu Parish Animal Control and a detective retrieved the puppy's body. The puppy was a pit bull mix. The sheriff's office brought the man in for questioning on Wednesday. He told investigators he hit the puppy twice behind the head with a claw hammer to kill him. He was then arrested.
What's happening around town? Check the Happenings page!
A man led Orange police on a car chase through city streets Thursday evening before crashing into a tree. Sgt. J.C. Steele with the Orange Police Department reported speeds exceeded 60 miles per hour on streets and alleys in the Navy Park area. After the Pontiac G6 crashed, police about nine ounces of marijuana in the car, along with digital scales. The driver of the car, 26-year-old Tllandius Xxavier Caldwell of Orange, has been charged with felony possession of marijuana and felony evading arrest. Friday morning Precinct 1 Judge David Peck set a total bond of $25,000. Sgt. Steele reported that he was on patrol and saw Caldwell inside the Pontiac. He knew Caldwell had municipal court warrants issued for arrest and turned around. The Pontiac was parked on the side of the street in the 200 block of Knox Street. Sgt. DeVault, who was with Steele, walked toward the car and it sped away. Steele said the chase went the wrong way down streets and ran other cars off the roadway. The car crashed into the tree about 6:50 p.m. on North Street at the intersection with Sixth Street. Detective Captain Cliff Hargrave said Friday two other people inside the car ran away and have not been apprehended.
The Vidor babysitter who left a loaded pistol out where a 5-year-old could shoot himself was sentenced to serve 22 months in a state jail after her probation was revoked. 20-year-old Melissa Ringhardt wore a bright orange jail jumpsuit when she appeared Thursday afternoon before 128th District Judge Courtney Arkeen. Ringhardt had a chain around her waist attached to handcuffs around her wrist. The shooting death was on Oct. 21, 2013. Orange County deputies said she had the .40 caliber pistol out because she had been scared that day. She smoked marijuana and went into a bedroom to nap, leaving the loaded pistol on a coffee table where little John Read could pick it up. Ringhardt had appeared in the same court in February to get a two-year probated sentence for the felony charge of child endangerment. That was the maximum sentence. The Orange County District Attorney's Office filed a motion to revoke her probation because she did not meet the terms. An arrest warrant for her was issued in July. Authorities found her in Arkansas the first week of this month and she was brought back to Orange County.
Because of frequent shootings in schools, some people are advocating that teachers carry handguns in their classrooms. Texas allows that practice and a handful of school districts allow trained teachers to keep a gun. Kogt.com has an opinion poll that shows 68 percent of the respondents favor teachers with guns, with 32 percent against.
However, four public school superintendents in Orange County think that teachers are educators and should concentrate on academics.
Dr. Pauline Hargrove with the Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD had a simple “no” answer to the question. She said teachers are trained to be educators. “Teachers have some much on their plates” and should not be concerned about carrying guns.
Dr. Stephen Patterson with the Orangefield district has mixed ideas. He said one side of logic says that teachers with guns can be a preventative. Another side says teachers are educators and don’t have the training of a law officer. “I err on the side that we’re trained to educate,” he said
Patterson also said that if teachers carry guns, they need to have extensive training. That training includes psychological exams. He doesn’t know how a school district could afford that kind of effort. “We’re limited on our funds as it is,” he said. He doesn't foresee the state providing money for training to arm teachers.
Mike King with the Bridge City district said “I hate that we would even consider” arming teachers. He, too, sees two sides to the issue, but added “It’s not what teachers are trained to do. They’re educators.” Bridge City is the only one of the four districts surveyed that has its own school police department. King said the one full-time officer is armed. The district also pays two off-duty armed city police officers each day. The officers rotate between campuses.
James Colbert with the West Orange-Cove CISD is opposed to teachers with guns because he has faith in professional police departments handling problems. Teachers are educators, he emphasized.
Colbert said he has several police officers in his family. “Officers have a difficult time determining when to take a shot. How would an English teacher know better?” he asked.
A 45-year-old Pinehurst man was arrested Wednesday night for drug possession. The arrest by the Orange Police Department was made less than four days after he was arrested for similar charges by Orange County deputies. Precinct 1 Judge David Peck on Thursday morning set a total bond of $30,000 on Jimmy Russel Oathoudt for possession of methamphetamine and possession of hydrocodone. Oathoudt was released from jail on a $5,000 bond during the weekend a few hours after he was arrested at 2:20 a.m. Saturday.
Orange Police Officer M.C. Bernard reported he stopped a 1994 pickup truck about 10 p.m. Wednesday for driving with no brake light. Police found crystal meth and the controlled prescription drug hydrocodone. In addition, they found six empty syringes, a glass pipe used to smoke meth along with a black box that contained scales, a spoon, keys and a purple bag. Bernard said he stopped the pickup at Tulane Road and 37th Street after first seeing the truck traveling on Bowling Lane.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office reported that a patrol deputy stopped a minivan for defective equipment about 2:20 a.m. Saturday in the area of Tulane Road and Avenue B. Oathoudt was arrested after deputies found crystal meth and several small plastic baggies.
A woman suspected of shoplifting at a 16th Street store has another charge because she gave a different name to a police officer. She backtracked when she learned the woman with the name she used had an arrest warrant issued from Jefferson County. Orange Police Officer J.H. Kirkpatrick reported he went to Walgreen's at 6:23 p.m. Tuesday for a call about a woman putting items in her purse. He arrested 38-year-old Misty Kaye Rice of Lumberton for Class B misdemeanor theft and Class A misdemeanor failure to identify to a peace officer. Kirkpatrick reported $109 worth of cosmetics and Hallmark cards were recovered.
The Orange County Airport between Orange and Bridge City is getting a new hangar. County Maintenance Director Mark Wimberley is overseeing the project. Wimberley reports the project is about 16 percent complete. Bids were received on September 30. Engineers sent a letter last Friday to the Texas Department of Transportation, which oversees air travel in the state, to award the contract to build the hangar. Work should get started in the next couple of months according to Wimberley. The hangar will be used to service helicopters at the airport.
Bridge City has had some issues with water problems over the last year. City Manager Jerry Jones gave updates to the city council this week. First, Jones says the city’s water department has continued to work to fix the drinking water problem in Bridge City. More than 22 flush lines have been installed on all the dead end lines in the city and are now operational which should continue to help eliminate the brown water problems. High water or at least maps that show where high water is likely is a second issue Bridge City has confronted in the last 12 months. Jones gave the council the latest status of the city’s appeal of the FEMA flood maps. Jones indicated the city and engineers are still working on information for the response to FEMA in regards to the flood insurance appeal and is an ongoing thing. City officials met with FEMA representatives in August and were advised by the federal agency of several items to be researched by Bridge City and the engineers hired by the city to assist in the appeal.
St. Mary Catholic School held its first 9 week honor roll award ceremony. Students received awards for distinguished honor roll and 90 and above honor roll.
By late Wednesday afternoon, the Texas Department of Public Safety's mobile office to issue Election Identification Certificates had not issued one certificate. The certificates are needed to vote if a registered voter does not have a current Texas driver's license or acceptable photo ID, including a state concealed handgun license or a U.S. passport. Student identification cards are not allowed. The DPS employee said several people during the day had inquired about getting the identification certificate, but no one had the necessary paperwork. The documentation needed includes a voter registration card, certified birth certificate plus legal documents including marriage or divorce records for women with a different name than on the birth certificate. In addition, two other pieces of identification are needed for everyone besides the birth certificate.
|This dog was seen at the intersection of Meeks and International. If it's yours please call 670-2395|
Bridge City Middle School welcomed 44 new members into National Junior Honor Society at their induction ceremony
The city council in Bridge City approved a 6 month extension of an agreement with consultant Tim Richardson Tuesday. Richardson is providing consulting services for Bridge City and the City of Orange in regards to seeking British Petroleum Deepwater Horizon funding. City Manager Jerry Jones updated the status of the BP restoration funding saying there was still jockeying by British Petroleum to determine how much money would be made available. Jones strongly recommended the council approve extending the agreement with Richardson. Jones stated funds from the suit have been earmarked for the regional waste water plant. Mayor Kirk Roccaforte added that all the cities involved have agreed to move forward with the suit against British Petroleum. In other business the council approved 3 resolutions dealing with fair housing and funding for highway maintenance. Jones indicated the resolutions are required for the city to receive federal money like Community Development Block Grants and the resolutions represented basically corrections in wording.
West Orange-Cove CISD Superintendent James Colbert has been named as the lone finalist to become superintendent for the Harris County Department of Education in Houston.
The Harris County school board Tuesday afternoon voted to name him the finalist. State law requires a 21-day period after a lone finalist has been named before the hiring becomes official. “I’m really excited about the opportunity,” he said. “It wasn’t something I was seeking. It was something I was actually recruited for.”
Harris County and Dallas County are the only counties left in the state that till have a countywide superintendent. Colbert described the job as more like a business CEO than a traditional school superintendent. He will be working with the 25 independent school districts in Harris County. “All of them are large,” he said. Harris County has a population of 4.1 million. He said the Harris County Education Department operates a successful Head Start program and also allows vendors to set up so all the school districts can make purchases at reduced prices.
He will stay with WO-C until the end of November. He said the board of trustees should have enough time to appoint an interim superintendent to work until a permanent replacement is named. The board will decide whether or not to hire an outside consulting firm to help search for a new superintendent. The search process could take three or four months, he said.
Colbert started the job with WO-C in January 2011. He immediately had to deal with the state legislature making drastic budget cuts to education. He oversaw the cutback of 50 teachers and administrators, largely through offering a retirement bonus. Then in May of that year, he oversaw a new bond election utilizing federal stimulus money. The bond election was needed to complete several projects that were unfinished after a 2007 bond election that was implemented under a previous administration.
The school district under his leadership also renovated the former Anderson Elementary School into a new alternative education center and an administration building. The previous administration was more than 50 years and was not designed for 21st Century technology. The new administration building opened in January.
When Colbert started, schools in the district were having trouble meeting the state testing standards. He said West Orange-Stark Elementary still needs improvements, but the high school is meeting standards. In addition, the middle school had failed to meet standards for two years. This year, the Texas Education Agency gave that school five of seven distinctions for improvements under the new state testing model.
Colbert said he talked with his wife, Angie, and son, Isom, a freshman at WO-S High, before considering the new job. He described them as “Team Colbert, my greatest strength.”
Colbert grew up in the Washington, D.C., area and was an All-American in track. He received a scholarship to the University of Texas, where he served as captain of the track team. During almost 20 years as an educator, he has worked in various positions, including as a high school principal in Dallas. He came to WO-C after being assistant superintendent for the Hamilton County schools near Chattanooga, Tennessee.
In talking about moving to the Houston area, he described himself as a “city boy” who will be able to be close to a metropolitan area again. “Traffic is not what I look forward to,” he added. “In Orange our version of traffic is getting stuck by a train.”
The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers will be moving forward with plans to build a storm protection system for Orange County to help prevent future catastrophic flooding like that which occurred during Hurricane Ike. The Orange County Commissioners’ Court approved an agreement this week to have the Corps of Engineers take soil borings and testing of the samples where the proposed levees will be built. Economic Development Director Bobby Fillyaw has worked with the corps to get the storm protection system built. Fillyaw said the samples will be taken at locations where the Corps of Engineers recommend the levees will go. Fillyaw stated, “It is a proposed route, they have met with the drainage district and all the different entities, people have come in and reviewed this potential location to try to minimize moving it for some reason in the future, but that’s not to say we can’t make adjustments.” The location for the levee system is based on schematics done by Orange County following four public hearings. The commissioners asked Fillyaw if he could estimate when the project would be complete. Fillyaw predicted, “We are probably three to five years ahead of anybody else that’s looking at it mainly because we took the initiative to go right after Hurricane Ike and start the process, I wouldn’t even want to venture a guess.” Fillyaw concluded by saying that a Corp of Engineer’s feasibility report on the project is due by January 2016 and shows the national economic impact the project will have. Orange County’s petrochemical industry gives this area a national impact. He said hopefully the path ahead will be clearer then for the time to complete the project. Next congress would issue a Water Resource Development Act bill to authorize funding for the project. Fillyaw said Orange County would have to go to congress each year for funding for the project.
|Airman First Class Dayn Gray graduated Wednesday from Security Forces Technical Training at Lackland Air Force Base San Antonio. Gray graduated in 2013 from West Orange-Stark High School.|
The results of the Orange Train Depot Steam Engine Art Contest were announced recently in Orange. Orangefield High School had four winners in this contest. Taking first place in the 11th Grade Division was John Ingram. First place in the 10th Grade Division went to Alyssa Kelley. Both John Darwin and Blayne Milstead won Honorable Mention awards. All four of these art students will have their work displayed in a calendar designed to raise funds to renovate the train station. Ingram’s and Kelley’s work will be displayed in the train depot once the work is completed.
West Orange Stark High School and Middle School 1st 6-Weeks Honor Roll
Early voting for the Nov. 4 general election started Monday. In Orange County, voters in Precinct 2 will also have a wet-dry option to sell alcoholic beverages. People in the Bridge City ISD will have a school bond issue for new buildings and improvements. In the Vidor area, residents in the Orange County Emergency Services District No. will vote on implementing a sales tax. Voting hours and days will differ at the four sites. Early voting at the Mauriceville First Baptist Church is the only site without extended voting hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. In addition, the early voting site in Orange, long held at the Orange Public Library, has been changed. That site will now be at the old West Orange-Cove administration building at 505 N. 15th Street (behind Wells-Fargo bank.)
The contested local races include District 36 U.S. House of Representatives: Republican Brian Babin of Woodville and Democrat Michael Cole of Orange. (No incumbent running.)
District 21 State Representative: Republican Dade Phelan of Port Neches and Democrat Gavin Bruney of Nederland. (No incumbent running.)
Orange County Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace: Republican David Peck (incumbent) and Democrat Gail Barnett Shaw.
Orange County Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace: Republican Joy Dubose-Simonton and Democrat Janice Menard (incumbent).
Early voting sites and times (Registered Orange County voters may go to any site.)
Former West Orange-Cove CISD Administration Building, 505 15th Street in Orange:
Monday Oct. 20 through Friday Oct.24: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday Oct. 25: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday Oct. 26: 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Monday Oct. 27 through Friday Oct. 31: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Bridge City Public Works Building
Monday Oct. 20 through Saturday Oct. 25: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday Oct. 27 through Friday Oct. 31: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
First Baptist Church Mauriceville
Monday Oct. 20 through Saturday Oct. 25: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday Oct. 27 through Friday Oct. 31: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Raymond Gould Community Center in Vidor
Monday Oct. 20 through Saturday Oct. 25: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday Oct. 27 through Friday Oct. 31: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
For people without valid photo identification to use when voting, the Texas Department of Public Safety on Wednesday will have a mobile site to get the Election Identification Certificate. The mobile unit will be set up at the former West Orange-Cove administration building at 505 N. 15th Street in Orange. This weekend, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Texas law requiring photo identification when voting. DPS will issue free photo voter Election Identification Certificates that are good for six years. People age 70 or older do not have an expiration date on their voter identification certificates. more
28-year-old Michael Gipson was stabbed Monday night at the Sabine Park Apartments, formerly The Oaks, near Pine Avenue and Simmons Drive. Captain Jennifer Burns with the Orange Police Department said the man is in stable condition at St. Elizabeth Hospital. She said police were called at 8:15 p.m. and described the cut as large. The man was taken to the hospital by Acadian Ambulance Service. Detective Captain Cliff Hargrave said Gipson and another man started fighting about a woman. Other people joined the fight. Gipson at some point noticed he was bleeding, however he didn't know who stabbed him. Officer J.H. Kirkpatrick reported that police found a stick with a piece of glass taped to the end plus a .22 caliber pistol at the scene.
|This little guy was found at 1615 Lansing St. off of Burnett in West Orange. Has a collar, but no contact info. Call 313.3245.|
Schools across the county continue to have clean cafeterias. During the first part of October, Orange County Health Inspector James Scales went to seven school cafeterias and all received perfect scores. He inspected a total of 11 food businesses, including a pre-opening for the Bridge City Heritage Festival, which he did not score. Only two restaurants did not receive perfect scores. They were Sun Wok Chinese Food on Texas Avenue in Bridge City and Kim Wah Buffet on Strickland Drive in Orange. The perfect schools were Little Cypress Elementary and Junior High, Community Christian School in Orange, Orangefield Junior High, Vidor Elementary, Pine Forest Elementary in Vidor, and Bridge City High. LaQuinta Inn and Suites on South Highway 62 in Orange also received a perfect score.
Kim Wah Buffet received a 78. Scales gave demerits for an employee drink without a lid, no dates on foods in the cooler and freezer, a box of molded lemons in a walk-in cooler. In addition, foods in the cooler and freezer needed to be covered. Boxes of crab were found defrosting on storage shelves. Several flies were found and fly traps were hanging from ceiling. The floors throughout the restaurant needed to be cleaned of old foods, and the shelves inside the walk-in cooler were rusted.
Sun Wok in Bridge City had a score of 68. Scales reported that fried chicken and eggrolls were not at proper temperatures. Mice feces were found on storage shelves. Dates were needed on the foods in the cooler and freezer and the foods needed to be covered. He found foods stored inside a cardboard box without a liner. The hand-washing station was broken. Water was dripping into a bucket from the cooler motor. Air vents, storage shelves, containers and floors needed to be cleaned of old foods. Storage shelves were starting to rust and needed to be repaired or replaces. In addition, broken and unused equipment needed to be removed from the site.