Thursday, July 20th
Caddo County Teen Pleads Guilty to Shooting Father
A Cyril teenager who pleaded guilty to shooting his father may be able to avoid serving any time behind bars. 18-year old Lance Moore was arrested in October of last year following a confrontation with his father. At the time he was charged as a youthful offender. Moore initially pleaded not guilty to a felony charge of shooting with intent to kill this past April and the case was set to go to trial in September. Moore changed his plea to guilty earlier this month. On-line court records indicate that if he successfully completes a juvenile offender program the charge will be dismissed - otherwise he could be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison. He's to be back in court next month to give a progress report.
Chix City Council OK's Cost Increase for Repair Project
The Chickasha City Council this week approved a change order for the street and storm drain repairs underway at the intersection of 14th Street and Missouri Avenue. The panel approved an additional $9,200 for the project. Authorities said they were going to have to remove debris which was blocking water from flowing through the drain was damaged during heavy rains this spring. Officials say somehow a utility pole was one of the items washed into the drain. Authorities believe it came from an area a couple of blocks away in a previous storm.
Residential Day Care Approved
The council also approved a use-on-review request to operate a home daycare in a residential area. Following a brief public hearing which included comments from applicant Kelsea Dobbins, the panel approved the request for the daycare in the 900 block of South 13th Street.
Panel Postpones Action on Grant Request for Downtown Eatery
The panel took no action on awarding a central business district building grant to a downtown restaurant. Officials with Roberto's Tex-Mex Cantina had applied for a $12,500 grant to assist with recent electrical and plumbing upgrades. Chickasha Economic Development Director Jim Cowan said the reason for no action taken was because the issue was worded incorrectly on the agenda. He said the restaurant has checked all the boxes required to be eligible for the grant and expects the council to approved it at a later date.
FEMA OKs Disaster Assistance for Some OK Counties
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved Gov. Kevin Stitt's request to provide federal disaster aid to help with recovery efforts in several counties following spring tornadoes and thunderstorms. Stephens and Comanche counties are among the 19 counties approved for FEMA funds to clean up and recover from storms which battered the state between June 15th and 18th. The assistance is for municipalities, counties, electric co-ops and others and will provide re-imbursement for debris removal, infrastructure and utility repairs, and other costs related to recovering from those storms.
Elgin Mayor Announces Run for State Senate
The Mayor of Elgin announces he'll be a candidate for a vacant seat in the state senate. J.J. Francais, who is also the vice president of Hilliary Communications, says he's tossing his hat into the ring to fill the District 32 seat relinquished by former State Senator John Montgomery. Montgomery recently stepped down after being named president of the Lawton-Ft. Sill Chamber of Commerce. The Lawton Constitution cites a press release from Francais that he is a conservative Republican and his platform includes fighting crime and battling inflation, and that government should empower its citizens rather than restrict their liberties. A special election will be held Oct. 10th.
Grady County 4H Volunteer Honored at State Conference
A Grady County 4H leader is recognized for her work. Angie Young leads the 4H program in Verden and was named the County 4H Volunteer of the Year. She was honored for her efforts at the state 4H Parent and Volunteer Board conference held in Stillwater recently. Grady County 4H educator Liz Taylor served as a presenter at the event. Young said the conference was a great experience and enjoyed the 'hands-on' workshops including one which focused on wildlife activities. She plans to incorporate the program into her Verden 4H group and in after-school and classrooms for school enrichment programs.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $75.35 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $79.46.
Natural gas is $2.60 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,024 and silver is $25.44.
Arrangements for Donna McBride, 63, of El Reno are with Sevier Funeral Home.
Wednesday, July 19th
Downtown Chix Sees Increase in Visitors
The number of people visiting downtown Chickasha over the first six months of this increased nearly 40 percent compared to 2022. Chickasha Economic Development Council director Jim Cowan points to foot traffic analytics from Placer Labs. It shows there were more than 560,000 visits to the downtown area from January through June of this year. That's a 39 percent increase over the same period last year. The study indicates that the busiest month during that period was in March when more than 100,000 visits were recorded. Cowan says a lot of the increase is due to the Leg Lamp and new businesses which have opened over the last year and a half. Cowan said they expect the number to grow even more as new entertainment venues like ax throwing and an escape room will be opening over the next few months. The area surveyed is from 1st to 6th Street on both sides of Chickasha and Choctaw Avenues and part of Kansas Avenue. It does not include visitors going to the Grady County courthouse.
New Lincoln Principal Excited About Role
The new principal at Chickasha's Lincoln Elementary School is looking forward to the next step in her career. Angie Morgan steps into the principal's role after five years as assistant principal. She is a career educator with more than 25-years in the classroom, first with Anadarko Public schools then with Chickasha where she taught elementary education. She has this message for parents regarding the upcoming school year:
She thanks her mentor, Dr. R.P. Ashanti-Alexander, who just retired as Lincoln principal. She says she learned patience from Dr. A and to not overreact to situations. A new assistant principal for Lincoln is expected to be named before the start of school on Aug. 10th.
Barricaded Anadarko Suspect Formally Charged
The man who was arrested after barricading himself inside an Anadarko home last week has been formally charged with a felony and two misdemeanors in connection with the incident. 43-year old Jeremy Janmohammadi had his initial appearance in Caddo County District Court on Monday. He's been charged with a felony for having a firearm after former felony conviction, and misdemeanors for obstructing an officer and outraging public decency. He was relesased from jail after posting a $5,000 bond. The incident occurred last Friday, when utility workers were working in an alley behind the home. Janmohammadi came out and brandished a weapon and cursed at the workers, who called police. A probable cause affidavit indicates authorities found a BB gun inside the home. Janmohammadi was convicted of drug trafficking of drug trafficking out of Grady County 2021 where he received a five year suspended sentence.
Filing Dates Set for Minco Mayor, Police Chief Posts
The resignations of the mayor and the police chief in town of Minco means a special election will be held this fall to fill those positions. The filing period for candidates wanting to run for those posts will be held Monday, July 31st through Wednesday, Aug. 2nd. Candidates will be able to file their declarations of candidacy at the Grady County Election Board in Chickasha from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each of those days. Forms may be downloaded from the state election board website at www.oklahoma.gov/elections or they may be picked up at the election board office at 315 Pennsylvania next to the Grady County Emergency Management Office. The special election will be held Sept. 12th.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $75.75 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $79.63.
Natural gas is $2.63 per million BTUs.
Gold is $2,019 and silver is $25.24.
Tuesday, July 18th
Chickasha Officials Name Engineering Firm
to Design New Water Treatment Plant
The Chickasha City Council gives city manager Keith Johnson the approval to negotiate a contract with an engineering firm to design the city's new water treatment plant. City officials recommended that the Oklahoma City firm of Freese and Nicholes be used to design the $74 million plant. Officials from the city and the firm held a walk-through of the plant yesterday. Johnson said it’s possible that some of the equipment in the current plant could be used in the new facility.
Details of the contract are expected to available at a later date. City voters will go to the polls Aug. 8th to consider a sales tax proposal to fund the construction of the new water plant.
Hollywood Strike Impacts Local film Production
The Screen Actors Guild strike in Hollywood is impacting film work going on in Chickasha, El Reno, and other Oklahoma communities. Crews working on sets for the Twisters film have had to postpone their work. John Cowan is the set director for the work underway in Chickasha. Last night the city council approved an extension of the film time through August 4th last night. Cowan said the streets around 17th and Minnesota will be temporarily re-opened.
Cowan said they will bring in a professional street sweeper to make sure nails would be picked up so the risk for flat tires should be minimal.
No Action Taken After Discussion of Purchase or Appraisal Property
After a 30-minute closed-door session, the city council took no action following a discussion regarding the purchase or appraisal of real property. The location of the property was not revealed.
More Drug Arrests Made in Ongoing Fentanyl Probe
Three people, including a teenager were arrested early yesterday as drug agents converged on a Chickasha home. Captain Jim Peek, a DEA agent with the Grady County Sheriff's Office, said a SWAT team of 12 to 15 officers served a search warrant on a home in the 1200 block of South Shepherd about 6:30 Monday morning. The team included state troopers and members of the District Attorney's Drug Task Force. Arrested was 42-year old Byran Latoure Blakes, also known as 'Kuda,' who is being held on complaints of trafficking and having firearms. Also arrested was Taylor Meade who had warrants for her arrest for grand larceny and assault and battery out of the Chickasaw Nation. Peek said the search warrant was issued after a confidential informant allegedly purchased 30 pills which included some laced with Fentanyl. The 16-year old was released by DHS to a relative.
Two Critical After ATV Crash
An ATV crash leaves two men fighting for their lives. 42-year old Garrett Dantzler of Blanchard and 40-year old Francisco Preciado of New Mexico were taken to an Oklahoma City hospital where they were admitted in critical condition. The accident happened about 6 o'clock Monday morning on Pendergraft Road and CR 1210 just west of Newcastle. The highway patrol reports the ATV was going too fast to turn on to the roadway causing the ATV to tip over and hit a railroad tie then landed upside down. Neither man was wearing a seatbelt or helmet. It wasn't immediately clear who was driving the ATV.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $74.15 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $78.50.
Natural gas is $2.51 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,966 and silver is $25.15.
Obituaries today include Linda Gladden, 77, of Chickasha. She worked at Gabriel and Maremont and as a Certified Nurse Assistant. No service will be held. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Monday, July 17th
Cost Increases for Intersection Repair
The work to make emergency repairs to the intersection at 14th and Missouri is becoming a little more costly. Tonight, the city council will consider a change order with Mayfield Contracting to add more than $9,000 to the project in order to clean out the storm drain. Officials say items like power poles and other materials are completely blocking the drain and preventing water from flowing.
City Manager to Negotiate With Firm for Water Plant Project Design
The council is also to consider giving city manager Keith Johnson the authority to negotiate with engineering firm Freese and Nicholes out of Oklahoma City. The negotiations will center around a statement of qualifications and a request for a feasibility study on the proposed water treatment plant improvements project.
Daycare Operation to be Considered
The panel will also hold a public hearing to consider a use-on-review for applicant Kelsea Dobbins to operate a home daycare in the 900 block of South 13th. The planning commission is recommending the approval of the proposal.
Downtown Resturant Seeks Grant for Upgrades
Also to be discussed is a proposed grant to help a downtown restaurant with improvements. The panel will consider awarding a grant to Roberto's Tex-Mex and Cantina up to $12,500 to assist with electrical and plumbing upgrades. Owners are planning on spending about $275,000 for improvements to the restaurant. The Economic Development Council is recommending the grant be approved. The group will also go behind closed doors to discuss the purchase or appraisal of real property. However, a description of the property was not listed on the agenda.
Historical Panel to Consider Sign Permits
The city's historic preservation committee meets this afternoon to consider several sign permits in downtown Chickasha. One is for Wild Ox Axe Throwing at 3rd and Chickasha Avenue; one for Oklahoma Human Services at 323 Chickasha Avenue; and one for Jay's Jewelry at 4th and Chickasha Avenue.
Minco School Year to Begin August 17th
Classrooms will be opening in less than a month for many public schools. Minco students will return on Thursday, Aug. 17th. Superintendent Kevin Sims says there will be 15 new employees in the district this year. Sims also says an individual bequeathed a lot of money to the district. He tells how they'll use some of those funds -
Sims said there have been a lot of students who transferred into the district for the upcoming school year. Average daily membership is right 600 students.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $75.42 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $78.50.
Natural gas is $2.54 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,962 and silver is $25.09.