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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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September 28, 2011     Hays Free Press
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September 28, 2011
 

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M00gAY ANSWERED Hays High captures late score to cap furious comeback against Lehman. - Page 1B LAEE i00/LE Work to begin on Kyle's latest city park next Monday, - Page lC M _ = -2 9- @Barton Publications, Inc HaysFreePress.com Vol. 109 = No, 25 Serving Buda, Kyle and Northeast Hays County 75 Man s 21st birthday celebration ends in COURTESY PHOTO Friends and family mourn the death of Luciano Yair Gonzalez, a 21 -year-old Kyle resident who was killed in a car crash on Sunday. BY SEAN KIMMONS "That was the last sean@haysfreepress.com A21st birthday is a time of fun. celebration and pride. It is a rite of passage to becoming an adult. The family of Luciano Go nzaiez held a bar- becue in his honor Sept. 18 after he officially turned 21 the daybefore. "The whole family was having tim,!' his brother Felipe Gonzalez recalled. The previ- ous night he said he took his brother to watch a boxing event at a bar. "He was really happy his last few days." Even though the barbecue was his party;, Gonzalez gave gifts to his mother and Felipe, whose birthday was the next day. "He gave me the gift and said 'just in case I don't see you,'" Felipe said. "He then told me 'I love you' and gave me akiss on the cheek. time I saw him" Mound 8 pm, family members say that Gon- zalez left for his uncles home. More than two hours later, Gonzalez headed back in a 1995 Mitsubishi Eclipse driv- en by his cousin Javier Aviles. While traveling northbound in the 7500 block of Old Lockhart GONZALEZ Road in Tmvis Coun near Mustang Ridge, the car left the roadway and flipped over, authorities say. At about 10:45 p.m., Gonzalez was pro- nounced dead at the scene. Aviles, 20, and another cousin Jose Aviles, 15, both of Buda, were injured but have since been discharged from the hospital. Jose and Gonzalez were fatal wreck not wearing seatbelts and the incident is s,.ffJl under investigation, a Department of Public Safety official said On Thursday, friends and family gath- ered again, this thne, howevm; to mourn the passing of Gonzalez at Santa Cruz Catholic Church in Buda. HARDWORKING MAN Sitting in one of the church's pews, Salva- dor Rebollar remembered his son as a hard, working man at his construction company CapForm Inc. Gonzaiez was a carpenter and flaggerwith his eyes on the promotion ladder. his father says. "He wanted to be a general superinten- dent," said Rebollar, who is a superintendent at the company. "He wanted to be a step above me." See FATAL WRECK, pg. 2A Highway would tie FM 1626 to Mopac Hays chips in $5N for project BY BFLD ROLLINS brad@haysfreepresscom Hays Count?,-wilt chip inr $5 million to help Travis County build a long-awaited highway that would connect FM I626 in Hays County with Mopac Bou- levard in Austin, under an offer approved in ComiNasJ.oners Court this week. Hays conmfissioners unani- m.My approved a resolution tha both pledges the rinds mzc asks the state to remove the Ngt',way, Texas 45 SW, from its own awtng board and instead let Travis County build it as a county mad. The tough part might be get- ring Travis Caunty commis- sioners to go along, despite the apparent support of Judge Sam Biscoe. Yielding to environmen- talists' concerns, rravis County commissioners in May 2010 asked the Capital Area Metro- politan Planning Organization to remove Texas 45 SW from its 25-year master plan with only Biscoe dissenting. Resizing the road to a two- to ffree-lane county mad - in- stead of a four- to six-lane major highway- u1 slash the project's price tag from as much as $92 million to as little as $20 million. It will also allow the counties to forgo a lengthy environmental See TEXAS 45 FUNDS, pg 4A Punishing child abusers Authorities work with nonprofit group to crack down on sex crime violators BY SEAN KIMMONS sean@haysfreepress.com After Inappropriate images were 1 fou ad onWesleyWayne Schaefer s computer, it initially seemed that child pornography would be the only charge the 34-year-old San Marcos man would face In trial. But investigators probed further and asked six children who once lived with Schaefer to be interviewed at Roxanne's House, a children's advocacy pro- gram that is part of the Hays-Caldwell Women's Center. As the trial drew closer, the children sought counseling and came forward with sexual abuse claims. With the added evidence, investigators added a first-degree felony charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child to Schaefer's case. "It was determined that there was a lot of inappropriate activity going on," recalled Melissa Rodriguez. the director of Roxamm's House. In May, District Judge Gary Steel sen- tenced Schaefer to life without parole for the continuous sexual abuse charge, plus 100 years for numerous counts of child pornography, Although the latter counts likely sent Schaefer to jail for the re, st of his life, the life sentence made sure of it. Rodriguez, who has worked at Roxamm's House for about a decade, says a collaborative effort between her organization, investigators and prosecu- tors has led to more child abuse case convictions and stiffer punishments this year. From January I through September 12, there have been at least 19 child abuse convictions. Nine of those cases PHOTO BY SEAN KIMMONS Michelle Rodriguez and other counselors at Roxanne's House in San Marcos help child abuse victims file statements against their abus- ers. She says that child abuse cases in Hays County are up this year and offenders are receiving stiffer sentences. were jury trials that resulted in sen- tences totaling 280 years in prison plus two life stints, including Schaefer's. The other 10 cases were plea agreements that assessed 159 years of prison time, according to the program's figures. "There really haven't been many In the past," says Rodriguez, who often testifies as an expert witness in these trials. "This is the first year we've had this maw trials." STREAMLINED JUSTICE Rodriguez credits investigators and prosecutors actively pro'suing claims and using her program as a resource to fortify cases. Also, the Texas Legislature passed"Jessica's Law" in 2007. mandat- ing longer sentences for those found guilty of repeated sexual abuse of a child "It carries a heavier weight, 25 years to life, and it's been utilized a lot," Rodri- guez said of the recent law. Ifa child abuse claim arises, either physical or sexual in nature, the child is typically interviewed at Roxamm's, which attempts to create a friendly envi- ronment Where alleged victims can give p See ROXANNE S HOUSE, pg. 2A REPORT CHILD ABUSE Under state law, any person .who believes that a child is being abused, neglected or exploited is required to report it Criminal charges could be handed down to those who fail to report child abuse. To make a report contact the Texas Department of Fam- ily and Protective Services hotline at 1-800-252-5400. To contact Roxanne's House, call (512) 396-7276 or for more information go to the Hays-Caldwell Women's Center website at www, hcwc.org. Subscriber address Nat'i Night Out Kick-off Party Free hot dogs, child ID kits, bouncy moonwalk and Cora the Buda Police Dog. 6 p.m. at Buda City Hall. Hays CISD Redistricting Committee Meeting " Public meeting with demographer and attorney explaining the redistricting process and addressing citizen questions and comments. 6 p.m. at the HCISD Administration Building, Kyle COiVI|RG gP 54th annual FireFest , Three day festival featuring a BBQ k cook-off, firefighter challenge, washer tournament, 5k, beauty pageant and lots of live music Buda City Park Begins 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday at 8 a.m. and noon on Sunday. Gardening Workshops Fall Gardening Workshop:Hosted by organic gardener Tim Miller. 1 p.m. at Reid's Nursery in Maxwell. Tree Care and Replacement during a Drought: Learn how to keep 'your trees healthy (or help them recover). 2 p.m, It's About Thyme nursery in Manchaca. For a more detailed list of area events, go to haysfreepress.comlcalendar and page 4C of today's paper. OLJ} g[Z00 NEW TROgBLE$ City says roadside institution is an eyesore - Page 1D Opinions ..................... 3A Sports ........................ I&2B Education ................... 3&4B Community .................... 1-4C Calendars .................. 4C Service Directory ......... 2&3D Classifieds ...................... 2D Public Notices ............. 2&3D