Today we close out the Chickasha Future Farmer of the week with President Blake White and FFA Reporter Cody Bell closing out the year.
Monday, Dec. 10th
Missing Elderly Blanchard Man is Found
A Silver Alert issued for a missing Blanchard senior citizen has been canceled. The McClain County Sheriff’s Office had issued the alert for 85-year old Walter Heironimus. Authorities said he had left his home in his pick-up Sunday morning and didn’t return. Our partners at KWTV News 9 are reporting that Heironimus was located sometime last night, but it wasn't clear where or when he was found. Reports indicate that Heironimus is OK and was to be reunited with his family.
City Sales Tax Revenues Grow
Sales tax revenues are soaring in the region and the energy industry is the main factor. For the City of Chickasha, sales tax revenues have been right around $1 million each month for 2018. City Manager John Noblitt says it's a big help in taking care of some financial concerns he's faced in his nearly two years on the job.
Noblitt is projecting the city will collect about $12 million in sales tax revenue this year.
Chickasha School Board Candidate Withdraws
One of the candidates who filed for Chickasha school board last week has withdrawn her candidacy. Ginny Howell has decided not to run for the post she was appointed to earlier this year. That means Cara Gerdes, the only other candidate to file for that ofice, will serve the remaining years that are left in that post. Howell tells KOOL/RANCH News that she talked to Gerdes about her reasons for wanting to serve and that their ideals are very similar. Plus, Howell said Gerdes does have children attending Chickasha schools. Gerdes will take over Howell's post after the school election in February.
Thieves Burglarize Volunteer Fire Department
Investigators are still looking for individuals who burglarized the Porter Hill volunteer fire department over the weekend. Thieves broke in Friday night and stole several thousand dollars in bunker gear, life-saving equipment, and radios. One firefighter called the thieves low-lives, and that the individuals must be in sad shape to steal from a fire department. An on-line fund-raiser is underway to help replace the equipment.
Grady County OHCE to Provide Holiday Dinner to Veterans
The Grady County DAV chapter will hold a Christmas dinner for all military veterans and their families this coming weekend. Grady County OHCE will prepare the meal, and welcome all veterans to stop by and enjoy the food and fellowship. The dinner will be held Saturday, December 15th from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the DAV headquarters at 6th and Chickasha Avenue.
Caddo County Ag Programs on the Horizon
There are a number of programs for livestock and grain producers in the Caddo County area scheduled in the next few weeks. Cattle producers will meet Monday, December 17th for a program with OSU Livestock Specialist Marty New. He will discuss winter supplements for cattle. That's a 6:30 p.m. meeting. The next morning, at 7:00 a.m. Tuesday, December 18th, OSU Grain Marketing Specialist Kim Anderson will provide some updates. Also coming up, all current restricted-use pesticide licenses will be expiring at the end of the month, so there are a couple of training programs on the calendar. One will be held in Hinton on Thursday, December 20th at noon at The Hot Spot, and one will be held Thursday, January 3rd at 2:00 p.m. at the Caddo Kiowa Technology Center in Ft. Cobb. Packets are $20. For information on these programs contact the OSU Extension Office in Anadarko.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX was up last week to $52.61 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude was also up to $61.67.
Natural gas was up Friday but down for the week to $4.49 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,252 and silver is $14.64.
Saturday, Dec. 8th
Mom Faces Child Abuse Charge
A mother is charged with child abuse after investigators claim a 3-year old boy was malnourished and kept in a locked room. 27-year old Deonna Clanton surrendered to authorities Friday after a nearly six-month investigation by the Department of Human Services and the Grady County District Attorneys Office. Clanton listed a Lawton address but was living in Chickasha at the time the complaints were first reported. An affidavit from the district attorney says DHS received a referral about the case in June. It’s alleged the child was dehydrated, underweight, and suffered bug bites on his groin and head. Clanton told investigators she thought the child drank too much water, and locked him in his bedroom at night so he couldn't get access to fluids. Clanton is facing a felony charge of child abuse by injury. She remains in jail in lieu of a $150,000 bond. She's to announce her attorney on Dec. 20th with a preliminary hearing conference set for Jan. 2nd.
Homicide Suspect was on Probation for Manslaughter
Now a follow-up to a story we had this week about a man arrested in connection with an Anadarko homicide. 51-year old Emmett Dewayne Mckenzie, Jr. was a person of interest regarding the stabbing death of Humberto Marron. RANCH News has learned that the McKenzie is on probation in connection with another death that occurred nearly 10 years ago. McKenzie was initially charged with second degree murder in a case dating back to 2009. He reached a plea agreement with prosecutors, where he pleaded guilty to manslaughter and sentenced to 10 years in prison and 10 years’ probation. McKenzie has been charged with first degree murder in connection with Marron's death. Bond was denied. Prosecutors also want to revoke his probation from the 2009 case.
Kids Take Part in Shop-with-a-Cop
Several Chickasha youngsters got out of class Friday to spend some time shopping for Christmas. About two dozen children from Bill Wallace and Grand Avenue Elementary schools took part in the second annual Shop with a Cop program. Police officers and teachers helped the children pick out clothing, toys, and other gifts. Assistant Police Chief G.G. Music says the kids were thinking more about others than themselves. The kids and police officers spent a couple of hours at Wal-Mart and there as a special visit from Santa Claus. The Subway restaurant at Wal-Mart provided lunch for everyone. All the money for Shop with a Cop came from donations from individuals, businesses, and civic clubs in the community.
Talk Show Topic
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Jenna Cansler and Sarah Keeth with Red Rock Behavioral Health Services are on our KOOL Konversation program. We have A link to the program elsewhere on this website. Find it under the Community tab.
Friday, Dec. 7th
Manslaughter Charge Filed After Fatal Crash
There’s another twist in that deadly traffic accident that occurred northeast of Chickasha earlier this week. Grady County prosecutors are filing a felony first degree manslaughter charge against Shawn Pugh. Investigators believe Pugh was at the wheel of a car that hit a semi – an accident which killed a woman riding in Pugh's vehicle. You'll recall that the Oklahoma Highway Patrol arrested Pugh after the crash when they found out he was wanted in Virginia. We've been unable to find out why he was wanted. Authorities did say he had a suspended Virginia driver's license. Pugh had to be taken to the hospital to be treated for injuries he suffered in the crash, but then was taken to the Grady County Jail. His bond was set at $150,000.
Man Arrested at Casino on Drug Complaint
A Marlow man is accused of dealing methamphetamine. 38-year old Justin Russell Maddox has been charged with a felony count of distribution of a controlled, dangerous drug and misdemeanor charges of drug possession and obstructing an officer. He's being held in the Stephens County Jail on a $50,000 bond. The Lawton Constitution reports that Maddox was arrested at a Duncan casino after he got aggressive with a deputy sheriff who asked for his identification. Maddox was on probation after pleading guilty to a previous drug charge back in 2011. A hearing to revoke his 10-year deferred sentence on that charge is scheduled later this month.
Number of New Construction Permits Drop
New construction permits for Chickasha were way down last month. Requests for permits typically drop off in the fall and winter months. The city's Community Development Department approved seven permits totaling just under $64,000. All were for construction in residential areas for storage or re-modeling work. New construction through the first 11 months of 2018 is more than $23 million.
More Hotel Construction Expected
More hotel rooms could be in the future for Chickasha. The city council this week approved the sale of city-owned property near the Grady County Fairgrounds. City Manager John Noblitt said a developer wants to build two more hotels. A Best Western Plus is already under construction in that area and a Fairfield Inn is nearing construction south of the city. Noblitt said the hotels will be beneficial for the numerous events that are held at the fairgrounds as well as for the many baseball and softball tournaments held at the city's sports complex. There's no timetable on when the construction of the newest motels might begin.
Storm Siren Improvements Planned
A federal grant could help the City of Chickasha repair or replace a number of storm sirens. The city has been approved for a more than $110,000 FEMA grant for the project. The city will have to chip in about $35,000 to match the grant. Chickasha Fire Chief Brian Zalewski said there are plans to install a brand new storm siren at the sports complex. There is not one there now.
Governor Issues State of Emergency for Winter Storm
A state of emergency is in effect for the entire state as Oklahomans brace for the first winter storm of the season. Gov. Mary Fallin issued the order before the storm's arrival. Several activities this weekend have been re-scheduled or postponed. USAO commencement is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. this afternoon instead of this evening. The Santa's Workshop motorcycle toy run that was scheduled for tomorrow has been re-scheduled for next Saturday, Dec. 15th. If you know of any other cancelations or postponements, let us know so we can pass the word along.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX was down to $51.49 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude falls to $60.06.
Natural gas was down to $4.32 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,247 and silver is $14.60.
Thursday, Dec. 6th
Survivor of Fatal Crash Faces Charges in Virginia
The man who survived that fatal crash on the H.E. Bailey turnpike this week was arrested, after authorities find out he was wanted in his home state of Virginia. Shawn Pugh was taken into custody after being treated for injuries he suffered in the crash. A woman in the car, Ashley Pugh, died at the scene. It wasn't clear how the two are related. The highway patrol posted a photo of Shawn Pugh and a brief description of the accident on its Facebook page. It wasn't immediately known what charges Pugh is facing in Virginia. The OHP says traffic homicide investigators are processing Pugh's vehicle. Authorities say statements Pugh made are inconsistent with physical evidence and it’s not clear who was driving the car. Troopers are also asking any witnesses who may have seen the crash to contact the Lawton Highway Patrol office by calling 580-353-0783.
Anadarko Stabbing Death Suspect in Custody
Anadarko police have made an arrest in connection with the stabbing death of a man that occurred earlier this week. Emmett McKenzie, Jr. was taken into custody yesterday afternoon on a first-degree murder complaint. McKenzie was a person of interest being sought in connection with the death of Humberto Marron. Marron was dropped off at the Anadarko hospital with multiple stab wounds early Tuesday morning and died minutes later. It wasn't clear who took Marron to the hospital. Anadarko Police Chief Eric Harlan thanked Marron's family, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the District Attorney's Task Force for their help in the investigation. McKenzie could have his initial appearance on the murder complaint today.
Former Chix Teacher Runs Unopposed for School Board
Looks like a former Chickasha schools educator will now serve on the district’s board of education. Robyn Morse filed unopposed for a seat on the school board during the three-day filing period which ended yesterday. Morse retired from Chickasha schools a few years ago, and became an outspoken opponent of a controversial self-paced curriculum for high school students implemented by former superintendent Dave Cash. An investigation is continuing into that system where there were allegations of grade- and attendance-tampering. Morse will serve a five-year term in Office No. 5. Julie Hibbard, who previously held that office, did not run for re-election.
Two Chix School Board Seats to be Filled in Feb. Election
Voters in the Chickasha school district will decide who will fill two un-expired seats on the school board. For Office No. 1, Ginny Howell and Cara Gerdes have filed. Howell was appointed to that post earlier this year. And for Office No. 2 - Tim Miller, Laurie Allen, and former school board member Bruce Storms has filed. There is a two-day protest and withdrawal period before the filings are considered final. The school election will be held in February.
Opioid Issues Affect Grady County
A recent survey shows how the nationwide opioid epidemic impacts Grady County. The survey indicates that so many of the addictive prescription pain killers have been issued to regional patients, that every Grady County adult could have nearly 200 10-milligram hydrocodone tablets. That's according to a 2017 survey by the Oklahoma Prescription Monitoring Program. Officials with Red Rock Behavioral Health Services want to see that number dramatically reduced. You are encouraged to talk to your health care provider about ways to manage pain without having to take a prescription opioid. There's also a web site you can check out: www. okimready.org
Dowtown Chickasha Christmas Parade Tonight
Downtown Chickasha will be abuzz with excitement tonight for the city's annual night-time lighted Christmas parade. The Main Street Merchants Association have gathered dozens of floats and walking groups for the event. The theme is the Magic of Christmas. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three floats. The parade will start at 7:00 p.m. with the route beginning at the YMCA and finishing at the railroad depot. We understand the jolly old elf himself, Santa Claus, will take a break from his work at the North Pole to be part of the parade. After the parade will be the official lighting of the new 35-foot tall Christmas tree at the depot, which has already been lighting up the area the last couple of weeks. There will also be a faux snowball fight with fake snow provided by a snow cannon.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is lower to $52.89 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $61.56.
Natural gas climbs to $4.47 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,241 and silver is $14.44.
Wednesday, Dec. 5th
Virginia Woman Dies in Turnpike Crash
A woman has died after the car she was riding in crashes into a semi and lands upside down. 29-year old Ashly Pugh of Bumpass, Virginia died in the accident that happened on the H.E. Bailey Turnpike northeast of Chickasha about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. The driver of the car, 37-year old Shawn Pugh, also of Bumpass, Virginia suffered head and trunk injuries. He was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital where he was treated and released. The highway patrol says both vehicles were traveling east on the interstate, when the Pugh vehicle tried to merge into the lane that the big rig was in. Neither the driver nor the passenger of the semi were hurt. They were identified as Jennifer and Bobby Hontz of Knob Noster, Missouri.
Elderly Burn Victim Succumbs to Injuries
A Chickasha woman who suffered second and third-degree burns when a space heater ignited her clothing has died. 89-year old Lois Jantz was injured a few weeks ago. Chickasha Fire Chief Brian Zalewski said that Jantz was walking by the electric space heater when it caught her clothing on fire. She died from her injuries the day before Thanksgiving.
Anadarko Stabbing Death Under investigation
Anadarko police are investigating the stabbing death of a man who was dropped off at the city's hospital. Authorities say 36-year old Humberto Marron suffered multiple stab wounds and was taken to Physician's Hospital early Tuesday morning. He died shortly after his arrival. Few details are being discussed by police right now. KWTV-News 9 cites Police Chief Eric Harlan as saying they don't want to compromise the investigation. Authorities have identified a person of interest but it's not known if any arrests have been made. Anyone has information about what happened is asked to call Anadarko police.
School Board Candidate Filing List Grows
Longtime Chickasha school board member Bruce Storms wants to serve again. Storms was the only new candidate to file for the Chickasha board of education in the second day of school board filing yesterday. Storms is the third candidate to file for an unexpired term for Office No. 2, the seat currently held by Shawna Covington. Tim Miller and Laurie Allen have also filed. Ginny Howell and Cara Gerdes are still the only candidates to file for the unexpired term in Office No. 1. Robyn Morse has filed unopposed so far for a five-year term in Office No. 5. Checking some other school board filings - Crystal Shebester has filed at Alex; Matt Caves has filed at Ampo; Naomi Dietrich and Dale Thompson have filed for Office No. 4 at Ninnekah; Kay Winn has filed at Verden; Deserae Butler and Michelle McCray have filed for separate offices at Pioneer; Caleb McClung has filed at Friend; Josh Oaks and Mark Shaw have both filed for Office No. 2 in Middleberg; Joe Harris has filed at Rush Springs; and Lance McKee has filed at Minco.
Two Arrested, One Charged in Road Rage Incident
A road rage incident leads to the arrest of two drivers for pulling guns on each other. A state trooper was dispatched to a minor traffic accident just north of Cihckasha on Highway 81 last Friday. An OHP affidavit says the disagreement started when one pickup passed another on a bridge, and one driver is alleged to have intentionally rear-ended the other. A truck driver who witnessed the incident provided a video of what happened. 48-year old Clinton Arlton Wood of Chickasha and 43-year old Byron Thomas Bullington of Ninnekah both spent the weekend jail. Wood has been charged with a felony for pointing a firearm. He is out of jail after posting a $5,000 bond. Prosecutors declined to file charges against Bullington.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is up to $53.25 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $62.08.
Natural gas is up to $4.45 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,243 and silver is $14.56.
Tuesday, Dec. 4th
Several Candidates File for Chickasha School Board
Five candidates filed for the three offices that are up for election on the Chickasha school board during the first day of filing for board of education seats on Monday. For Office No. 1, Ginny Howell and Cara Gerdes have filed for an un-expired term. Howell was appointed to the post earlier this year. For Office No. 2, Laurie Allen and Tim Miller have filed for that unexpired term. That post is currently held by Shawna Covington, who was also appointed to the panel this past year. As of late yesterday, Covington had not yet filed. In Office No. 4, Robyn Morse has filed for the post currently held by Julie Hibbard. That is for a full five-year term. Hibbard had not yet filed as of late yesterday. Candidates have until 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, December 5th to file for school board seats. School elections will be held in February.
Shadow Valley Housing Revision Approved
A new housing development which was unanimously voted down by the Chickasha City Council earlier this year, has now been approved by a split vote of the panel. In a 5-4 vote, the council approved a revised version of the Shadow Valley Development on Country Club Road. Switching their vote to support the development were Mayor Chris Mosley and council members Eugene Nelson, David Sikes, Kim Loggins, and Zack Grayson. Maintaining their opposition to the plan were Mark Keeling, Dr. R.P. Ashanti-Alexander, Jim Hopkins, and Joe Molder. Earlier this year, the council passed an ordinance that said developers would have to wait a year before bringing back plans that had been rejected by the council. City Manager John Noblitt tells why this plan was brought back so quickly.
Noblitt said the first proposal had about 30 homes in a much larger area while the revised plan is for only about 13 units. Chickasha resident Glen Thompson spoke against the proposal back in October and again last night.
Thompson said rental properties de-value single family homes in the neighborhoods where they are built.
Chix Police Chief Steps Down; New Chief Named
The City of Chickasha will be getting a new police chief. We reported yesterday that current Police Chief Greg Anderson is stepping down as of Dec. 14th. He says he's stepping down for personal reasons after spending just nine months on the job. City Manager John Noblitt said Anderson told him last month of his plans to resign. Noblitt has already tabbed a new police chief who is expected to be on board in about 90 days. Noblitt says he has picked Kathryn Rowell, a long-time employee with the Ft. Worth, Texas police department. Noblitt said she was a finalist when Anderson was hired earlier this year. Rowell is expected to start March 1st and will be the city’s first female police chief.
Caution Advised for On-Line Shoppers
More and more people are shopping on-line, but consumers should be careful when doing so. Grady County 4H President Beth Armstrong has some words of advice from OSU Extension.
Armstrong said on-line credit card purchases are covered by the Fair Credit Billing Act, which allows consumers to dispute charges and withhold payment until the creditor investigates the situation.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is up to $52.95 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is up to $61.69.
Natural gas is down to $4.34 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,244 and silver is $14.54.
Monday, Dec. 3rd
Homicide Investigation Continues
Authorities are continuing their investigation into the death of a Ninnekah area man. Grady County Undersheriff Phil Blevins says the death of 67-year old Roy Lee Fulton Sr. is considered a homicide. Investigators are not releasing much information about Fulton's death because of its sensitive nature. Blevins said Fulton suffered some type of trauma but was not specific. Authorities were called to Fulton's home west of Ninnekah Friday night. A relative had become concerned because she had not heard from him in a couple of days. Blevins says they have conducted a number of interviews and are narrowing down a list of suspects. Agents with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation spent much of the overnight hours Friday and into Saturday morning gathering evidence.
Fiery Crash Sends 5 to Hospital; 4-year old in Fair Condition
Two vehicles crash and burn near Marlow sending several people to the hospital, including two small children. One child was hospitalized in fair condition with head injuries. The accident happened southeast of Marlow late Saturday afternoon. In one of the vehicles were 29-year old Christopher Sylve of Ninnekah and an unidentified 4-year old boy from Duncan. In the other vehicle were 52-year old Larry Bryant, 52-year old Kimberly Rost, and an unidentified 6-year old girl all of Duncan. All were taken to a Duncan hospital, and all but the 4-year old boy were treated and released. The state trooper investigating the crash says Syvle failed to yield at an intersection and both vehicles became fully engulfed in fire after the collision.
Re-Zoning Requests Highlight City Council Agenda
The Chickasha City Council meets for its final regular meeting of 2018 tonight. The panel has a number of re-zoning issues to review, including one for the Shadow Valley housing development along Country Club Road. That plan has been revised from a previous proposal which was turned down by the council a couple of months ago. The council will also consider re-zoning property near 4th and Missouri for what is expected to be a new gas station-convenience store on the southwest corner of that intersection. The council is also to review a proposal to re-zone much of Honda Lane to light industrial use. The group will also consider selling about four acres of city-owned land along the Grand Avenue corridor near the Grady County Fairgrounds to a developer for $48,000. The council meets at 6:30 p.m. tonight at City Hall.
School Board Filings Begin
Filings for school board posts open this morning and three offices are up for grabs on the Chickasha board of education. Those are the posts held by Julie Hibbard, Ginny Howell, and Shawna Covington. Hibbard serves in Office No. 4 and the term runs for five years. Howell serves in Office No. 1 and Covington in Office No. 2. Both were appointed to their seats earlier this year and they must file if they want to try and stay on the panel. Candidates must file at the election board in the county seat where the district is located. The filing period runs through Wednesday and the annual school elections will be In February of 2019.
Lincoln School Lego League Heads to State Competition
A big achievement for the Lincoln School robotics team. The group won a regional competition in Oklahoma City last month and will now go on to a state competition. The Lincoln Lego League is part of the international FIRST Robotics project. FIRST is an acronym which means For the Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology. Instructor Brandon Willis says the teams have to design and build a robot to perform certain tasks with a solar system-themed challenge-
The state contest will be held in Shawnee on Saturday, December 15th.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $50.93 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude fell to $58.71.
Natural gas was up $4.83 per million BTU.
Gold is $1,229 and silver is $14.46.