Saturday, March 12th
Part of Caddo County Cold Case Solved;
Investigators Now Seek Info on Killer
Human remains found in Caddo County more than 25 years ago have finally been identified. Now investigators are now hoping someone has information on who may have killed 20-year old Katrina Bentivegna. Her body was found partially buried near Route 66 and Highway 281 in April of 1995. Officials with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) said DNA taken from the remains was matched to her relatives. Authorities initially had trouble identifying the remains as Bentivegna's body was dismembered. She lived in Midwest City at the time but was originally from Colorado. She came to Oklahoma less than two years before her disappearance. It wasn't clear how she was murdered. Officials are asking anyone who may have information to contact the OSBI anonymously. Information can be e-mailed to: email@example.com
Production Reports Out on Regional Oil and Gas Wells
We have production numbers on some oil and gas wells in the region. The website OK Energy Today reports that Gulfport Midcon has two Grady County wells with very good numbers. They are the Hale wells east of Rush Springs in Section One of Township 3 North and Range 6 West. The wells were producing nearly 1,900 barrels of oil and more than 45,000 Mcf of natural gas daily from a depth of nearly 26,000 feet. The wells had spud dates of May of 2020. In Canadian County north of Tuttle along the Canadian River, Citizen Energy filed a report on two McNeff wells on a single pad. They were producing more than 600 barrels of oil and nearly 3,000 Mcf of natural gas per day from a depth of 19,000 feet. They had a spud date of September of last year. In Canadian County, Cimarex Energy filed a report on the Carel well west of Union City. That was bringing in nearly 800 barrels of oil and 5,000 Mcf of natural gas per day from a depth of more than 21,000 feet.
Anadarko City Manager Bids Farewell
Anadarko residents bade a fond farewell to their city manager last night. A going-away reception was held for Kenneth Corn who spent the last seven years at the post. Corn is leaving to serve as the state director of rural development for the United States Department of Agriculture. Corn posted a nearly four-minute farewell address on the City of Anadarko’s Facebook page. Among his comments-
Corn said the city made a lot of upgrades on water and sewer lines and the city's electric grid during his time and that more improvements are on the horizon for the new city manager to follow up on. Corn thanked all the city employees for their dedication and said residents should be proud of what they do for their community.
'Spring Forward' With Time Change
The State of Oklahoma and most others across the country return to standard time tonight. Analog clocks and watches should be set forward one hour before you go to bed tonight (Remember the adage – Spring Forward, Fall Back). It means most of us will lose an hour of sleep. For those who work the graveyard shift it's one less hour you have to work. Computers, tablets, cell phones, and many digital appliances automatically change time.
Talk Show Topics
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Antwone Robinson and Taylor Smith with the Department of Human Services Foster Care program are on the KOOL Konversation. The guests on Real Estate Today are Joel Kintsel with the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs and Tommy Howell with several local veterans organizations. Find links to both programs under the Community tab on this website.
A private graveside service will be held at Fairlawn Cemetery for Barbara Sanders, 79, of Duncan and formerly of Chickasha. Arrangements are with McRay Funeral Home.
Friday, March 11th
Man Facing Drug Charges in Grady County
Has Arrest Warrant for Murder out of Stephens County
A Chickasha man facing drug trafficking charges in Grady County is wanted for murder out of Stephens County. 50-year old Mark Lamar James Richardson was arrested by state drug agents and Grady County sheriff's deputies last October. It's alleged he sold opioids laced with fentanyl to 31-year old Joshua Edgar of Duncan who died after taking drugs he purchased from Richardson. Yesterday, Stephens County authorities issued a warrant for Richardson's arrest in connection with Edgar's death. Richardson has been in the Grady County Jail since his arrest last fall and has a preliminary hearing conference next month on the Grady County charges.
Unwanted Wild Animals Find Home in Anadarko Park
The City of Anadarko is battling issues with feral hogs and black vultures. Officials are warning residents that wild hogs have invaded Randlett Park for the second time in the last year. The city's Facebook page indicates that officials have contacted the state department of agriculture in hopes of getting the animals removed. Also, officials say recent power outages are the result of a number of black vultures that have decided to make the city park their home. The post said 85 of the vultures have been roosting on power lines causing them to arc and set utility poles on fire. The vultures are protected by federal law and officials have reached out to state and federal agencies to re-locate the birds.
Stolen Backhoe Found in Oklahoma City
A happy ending for a Chickasha man whose backhoe was stolen from Fairlawn Cemetery. Jeff Wynn reported his backhoe was taken from the cemetery early Monday morning. He had posted the information on Facebook offering a reward for information. Wynn got a call from the Oklahoma City Police Department about 1:30 a.m. Thursday who told him the backhoe and a flat-bed trailer were found abandoned at Southwest 44th and Walker in Oklahoma City. Wynn said authorities didn’t believe the backhoe was damaged.
Wynne is hoping there is video surveillance from stores in the area the backhoe was found that could show the pickup and/or tag number as well as any individuals who may have been in the truck.
Sheriff's Office Updates Warrant List
The Grady County Sheriff's office has updated its list of individuals who have outstanding warrants. Here's Public Information Officer Lisa Hatchett-
If you have information regarding any of these individuals you're asked to contact the sheriff's office by calling 405-222-5085.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $106.02 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $109.33.
Natural gas is $4.63 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,982 and silver is $26.01.
Funeral service for Cathey Desire, 67, of Lawton is pending with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
Funeral service for Saquan Hensley, 21, of Lawton is also pending with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
Thursday, March 10th
Blind Plea Ends Caddo County Murder Trial
A Caddo County man charged with murder has decided to enter a blind plea to a lesser charge of manslaughter. 20-year old John Paul Williams-Ryan entered the plea as his murder trial was underway in Anadarko. Williams-Ryan was arrested in November 2019 in connection with the shooting death of 19-year old Payden McCullar that occurred south of Apache. The Lawton Constitution reports that Williams-Ryan was sentenced to 15 years in prison with all but three years suspended.
Father Accused of Threatening Family, State Trooper
A Chickasha man is in jail - accused of threatening the lives of family members and a state trooper. 33-year old Antonio William Ramirez is facing felony charges of planning, attempting, or conspiring to commit violence. The arrest came after it was alleged that Ramirez violated a protective order. Arrest warrants indicate he had been threatening and harassing his family between February 23rd and March 7th. He's also accused of threatening to kill a state trooper who is a neighbor of his estranged family. Grady County deputies arrested Ramirez this past Monday. Ramirez is being held in the Grady County Jail in lieu of a $300,000 bond.
Gravedigger Seeks Stolen Backhoe
(UPDATE) – The Oklahoma City Police Department recovered the backhoe early Thursday morning) A man's livelihood is at risk unless he can find his backhoe that was stolen from a Chickasha cemetery. Jeff Wynne bought the backhoe just six months ago which he uses to dig graves for the City of Chickasha. Wynne says if he can't find the backhoe he could lose his job. He tells our partners at KWTV News 9 that someone was able to provide some video surveillance that showed a white or silver four-door pickup that might have been used to take the backhoe from Fairlawn Cemetery which is near the airport. Wynne has worked in the cemetery for 20 years and is offering a reward to get it back.
Sales Price for Homes Up in Chix, Grady County
The average sales price for homes in Chickasha and throughout Grady County increased in 2021. Reports made available to KOOL/RANCH News from Century 21/Mosley Real Estate indicate that average sales price for homes in Chickasha climbed more than 29 percent - from $139,000 to $180,000. The price for a home in the city peaked in June at more than $189,000. The average sales price for homes in Grady County were up nearly 17 percent - from $221,000 to $258,000. The average price for a home in Grady County peaked at $268,000 in May of last year.
State Rep. to Run for Second Term
State Representative Dick Lowe (R-Amber) has announced his plans to run for re-election. Lowe is wrapping up his first two years at the state capital but has tackled a lot of issues head-on.
Lowe says there is always more work to be done and he's committed to fighting for traditional, rural values and God-given rights.
Chickasaw Nation to Distribute Meals to Students Today
Spring break for Oklahoma schools is next week. Students in the Chickasha area will be getting some meals to take home to help them get through the time off. The Chickasaw Nation is providing meals and milk to students up to 18 years old today even if they aren't enrolled in Chickasha schools. The meals will be available for pick-up from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. It will be a drive-through service with pick-up taking place at the high school in the bus lane.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $108.70.
London-based Brent crude is $111.14.
Natural gas is $4.53 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,006 and silver is $26.18.
Wednesday, March 9th
Chix School Busses to be Converted to CNG
Chickasha schools will be converting many of its school buses from gasoline and diesel to compressed natural gas (CNG). The board of education approved the measure this week at the recommendation of Tansportation and Maitenance Director Dan Turner. He said he has contacted officials at other districts including Blanchard, Lindsay, and Noble and all are happy with the switch.
Turner said the cost of CNG is much cheaper as current diesel prices are about $3 a gallon compared CNG at under a dollar a gallon. He said gas mileage is much better as gas and diesel fuel-powered busses get just under four miles per gallon while CNG busses gets about 8 miles per gallon. Turner said the busses will have 'dual fuel' capacity usage, meaning they could still use what the bus was orginally designed for. The district is getting a grant to pay for the conversion. B and H Construction of Goldsby will do the conversion work and install CNG stations at the bus barn. Turner hopes to convert 15 school buses to CNG over the next few months.
Fire, Police Department Purchases OK'd
The Chickasha City Council this week approved the purchase of some new equipment for the fire and police departments. The council approved the purchase of 11 Automated Electronic Defibrillators (AEDs) for the fire department for just under $15,000. It's on a state contract from Sterling Medical. The panel also approved the purchase of four ballistic shields or body armor costing about $6,500 from Security Pro USA, also from state contract. Also approved was the purchase of sixty batteries for hand-held radios for just over $5,000.
Benefit Walk, Festival of Light Contract Approved
The council also put its stamp of approval on a request to hold a Walk to End Alzheimer's downtown on Sept. 25th and waived all the fees normally associated with such a request. The panel also approved an annual agreement for the Festival of Light to use Shannon Springs Park for this year's event.
Chix City Clerk Achieves 'Certified' Status
Chickasha City Clerk Susan McDaniel can now put a few letters after her name. McDaniel recently earned the designation of Certified Municipal Clerk after completing a program with the International Institute of Municipal Clerks. The designation is awarded to those who complete demanding education requirements and have a record of significant contributions to their communities. A statement from the non-profit group says it's necessary for everyone in local government to keep pace with growing demands and changing needs. The institute was founded in 1947 and has grown to 14,000 members worldwide.
Widlife Refuge to Hold Prescribed Burn
Residents in southwest and central Oklahoma may see a lot of smoke that will appear to be from the Lawton area today. Officials with the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge will have a prescribed burn if weather permits. The burn area will be west of State Highway 49 in the Quanah Unit of the refuge. Traffic along the highway may be delayed and traffic control measures will be in place. Officials say smoke will likely be visible from a long distance and that residual smoke may persist over the next several days. A press release indicates that such burns are implemented under a strict set of guidelines and weather parameters in order to provide for public and firefighter safety and limit potential smoke impacts to residents and visitors.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $123.70 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $127.98.
Natural gas is $4.52 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,017 and silver is $26.59.
Nobue Ueichi (pronounced ‘Nobles Which’)
A memorial service for ‘Nobles Which’, 81, of Jenks and formerly of Chickasha will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, March 12th at McRay Funeral Home.
Tuesday, March 8th
RV Storage Ordinance Additions Approved
The Chickasha City Council unanimously approved some changes to the city's recreational vehicle storage ordinance last night. No one addressed the council during a public hearing on the proposed changes which were recommended by the city's Planning Commission last month. It calls for all types of recreational vehicles including coaches, all-terrain vehicles, boats, watercraft and trailers to be parked on a hard surface in the front and side yards of homes. The vehicles cannot extend into the city easement and must be in visible operating condition. The ordinance is expected to go into effect by the first of the month.
Use--on-Review For Winery Passes
A second public hearing was held to consider a use-on-review request to open a winery in the 500 block of Kansas Avenue. Applicant DJ Jenks addressed the council-
The use-on-review was necessary because the location is within 300 feet of a church by 10 feet. Church officials did not oppose the request. The council approved the use-on-review. Jenks hopes to be open in less than 60 days.
Cost-Share with New Tea Shop to Install New Water Lines OK'd
The council also approved a cost-sharing agreement with a company that is bringing a new business to Chickasha. Moonlight Ownership Company will be building a tea shop called HTeaToo at the corner of 4th and Missouri. The city and the company will share the cost of about $60,000 to replace some water lines but they will have to bore under 4th Street from the Sherwin-Williams parking lot across the street. The project has been awarded to Van Dyck Mechanical. City officials said because of the bad water lines the fire hydrant on the corner of 4th and Missouri doesn’t work. Authorities say a new water line would allow that fire hydrant to work and would also help improve water pressure issues in that area. City officials also said they will be applying for a matching Community Development Block Grant of nearly $200,000 to make upgrades to water lines in order to improve water pressure east of 4th Street and in the downtown area.
Council Holds Lengthy Closed-Door Session on City Manager's Performance
The council went behind closed doors for nearly two hours to hold an executive session to evaluate the performance of City Manager Tyler Brooks. Brooks has been on the job for about six months. After returning from the meeting the council took no action.
Chix Mayor Declares 'Joe Molder Day'
A Chickasha school bus driver was recognized for his work in saving students’ lives when the bus he was driving caught fire. Joe Molder was honored with a proclamation from Mayor Chris Mosley at last night's Chickasha school board meeting. Mosley officially declared yesterday as Joe Molder Day. Molder was taking some high school students home last week when the bus caught fire. No one was hurt. The panel also recognized high school freshman Dylan Bratt for his undefeated season and winning a state championship in his weight class. Bratt was 28-0 and is the first freshman at Chickasha High School to win a state championship.
Burn Ban Updates
Burn bans have been extended in a couple of area counties. County commissioners in Grady and Stephens counties extended bans through next Monday, March 14th. However, officials in Caddo County allowed its burn ban to expire Monday night. Most counties review burn bans every week to determine if they should be extended or dropped. Despite recent precipitation much of western Oklahoma remains in extreme drought which is a D-3 designation by the U.S. Drought Monitor.
Hospital, Five Oaks Accepts Medicare for Chiropractic Care
Grady Memorial Hospital and the Five Oaks Medical Group are now accepting Medicare and Medicaid to help patients needing chiropractic care. Dr. Rory Troub who has been with the hospital and Five Oaks for about six months, says chiropractic is beneficial for a lot of patients.
She said Medicare, commercial insurance, and self-pay patients do not need a referral but Medicaid patients will need a referral from a primary care physician.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $119.42 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $123.21.
Natural gas is $4.83 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,012 and silver is $26.38.
Monday, March 7th
RV Storage Ordinance Proposal to get Public Hearing
A public hearing to consider some revisions to Chickasha's recreational vehicle storage ordinance will be held during tonight's city council meeting. The changes would be effective for boats and trailers, watercraft and trailers, ATVs, travel trailers, and coaches. In residential areas the proposal calls for RVs to be on a paved surface no smaller than the RV if it will be stored in the front or on the side of the home. All RVs must be maintained in a visibly operable condition. The ordinance also deals with RV parking in commercial and industrial-zoned areas. The city's Planning Commission recommended the changes at its meeting last month. The council will also have a public hearing on a proposal to operate a winery at 6th and Kansas. The group is also to recognize James Weidenmaier who recently retired after a 20-year career with the police department. The group will also have a closed-door session to discuss the performance of city manager Tyler Brooks. The council meets at 6:30 tonight at city hall.
Blanchard Family Escapes Fire Thanks to Neighbors
A Blanchard family is counting its blessings after a fire destroyed their mobile home over the weekend. The Johnson family was home with a couple of grandchildren when neighbors came knocking on the door and told them that a fire was closing in. Amanda Johnson said they had no idea a fire was about to engulf their home. KWTV News 9 reported that neighbor Michele Smith ran through thick smoke to warn the family of the approaching flames. Several other area homes were also consumed by the fire. While the Johnson's escaped injury the family pet suffered severe burns and is being treated at a local veterinary clinic.
Anadarko School Board Member Resigns
The Board of Education for Anadarko Public Schools will be seeking a new representative. The school board is expected to accept the resignation of Charlie McLemore - effective immediately - when the panel meets tonight. The panel is also expected to accept the resignation of middle school teacher Mshell Cheek which will be effective at the end of the school year. The panel is also to consider approving a bid package on an artificial turf field and retaining walls for the football field; an overnight trip to Tulsa for the robotics team; fund raisers for the high school band and yearbook program; and for Sunset Elementary. The Anadarko school board meets at 6 o’clock tonight at the school administration building.
State ARPA Portal to Close
State officials will soon be closing the portal which is accepting applications for projects to be funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Since the portal opened last October more than 800 projects have been submitted for consideration. House Speaker Pro Tempore Kyle Hilbert (R-Bristow) talks about one project submitted which is designed to help with Oklahoma’s nursing shortage.
That project is requesting $10 million in ARPA funds which would be matched with a private donation of $4.5 million and a sales tax proposal by the City of Weatherford. The dollar value for the projects that have been submitted is more than $12 billion and the state only has $1.8 billion to use. The ARPA portal will be closing at the end of the month.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $115.68 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $118.11.
Natural gas is $5.01 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,005 and silver is $26.23.
Julia Ann Jones-Sledge-Terry
Funeral service for Julia Ann Jones-Sledge-Terry, 76, of Chickasha will be held at 1:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 8th at the Church of the Living God, P.G.T. Arrangements are with Brown-Thomas Funeral Home.
A memorial service for Robert ‘Gene’ Bullard, 71, of Norman and formerly of Chickasha will be held at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, March 9th at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church in Norman. Arrangements are with Havenbrook Funeral Home. Memorial contributions may be made to the OU Stephenson Cancer Center in Oklahoma City.