Aug

19

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 19, 2016

Monitor Staff Reports
KAUFMAN–Eastbound U.S. Highway 175 closed between Kemp and Kaufman due to a reported rollover crash with ejection Tuesday.
The crash was reported just before 11:15 a.m. on eastbound U.S. Highway 175 near Jiba Road. According to witnesses, Mariah Nealey, 42, of Fort Worth hit a culvert with the 2004 F-150 truck and then hit a second culvert, which flipped the truck three times. She was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected.
Emergency personnel closed the highway to traffic in anticipation of a CareFlite medical helicopter landing on the highway. She was transported to a nearby hospital.
The Kaufman Fire Department, Kaufman County Sheriff’s Office, Kaufman County Fire Marshal’s Office, CareFlite, and the Texas Department of Public Safety responded to the scene.

Aug

17

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 17, 2016

SH 34 By Pass-ribbon-IMG_1793
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
KAUFMAN–The long awaited Kaufman bypass road opening was celebrated Aug. 12 with a ribbon cutting and ceremonial first ride.
The cloudless morning and 85-degree 9 a.m. gathering portended good things to come for the area’s economic outlook as the new roadway opens about 1,000 acres of commercial and residential development opportunities. The approximately one-mile stretch runs from State Highway 34 (S. Washington Street) on the southwest end of town and crosses over U.S. 175 as it continues to the north east end. It will immediately help alleviate 18-wheeler traffic that has trucked through downtown on narrow S. Washington Street for years.
Kaufman City Manager Mike Slye started off the agenda recognizing key players in the project’s success, including builder Ed Bell Construction. He also pointed out the “architects of the financing,” which was a “long and arduous journey.” Without the vision, efforts and commitment of Jay Nelson, Curtis Snow (former city manager) and project manager Scott Young of Raba Kistner. “We wouldn’t be here today. I can’t say enough about them,” Slye said.
The financing of the $14 million bypass included funding from the City of Kaufman, who had direct oversight on the project, its Economic Development Corporation and Kaufman County. The state plays a role in providing engineering services and will be making reimbursement payments over time as spot traffic census numbers increase.
City of Kaufman Mayor Jeff Jordan said the project’s completion represents:
• improved mobility.
• future economic development.
• the power of teamwork.
• The sheer determination of the people of Kaufman, who had lots of opportunity to give up. “But we didn’t do that. We kept moving forward.”
He concluded his remarks with telling residents to “get used to road construction and dust, as funding from Proposition 1 comes into play. “Let’s keep it clean and take pride in it and be safe through the intersections. In the words of my dad, ‘Watch out for the other fella.’”
Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood said, “No project in the county is more important than this one right here.” About a dozen county officials were on hand for the event, that began 22 months ago with a groundbreaking in October, 2014. Wood also said, the county was working on adopting a countywide thoroughfare plan.
The next segment of the roadway opening up north of 243 is expected to be completed in September, TxDOT Dallas District Engineer Kelly Selman said of the region wide project.
The financing for the extensive project that has been imagined for more than 50 years called for creativity and collaboration from many segments. The Dallas District TxDOT engineered the project to save the city $13.8 million.
“Without partnerships like this, we wouldn’t be able to get projects like this built,” Selman said.
North Central Texas Council of Governments Director of Transportation Michael Morris said, “This project is a symbol of greater things to come and is part of a Phase II partnership.”
He spoke of a sister road project to the north and the need for leaders to continue to develop institutional partnerships based on trust to pull together a system of transportation improvements throughout the region.
“This is an exciting, historic time in Kaufman, Slye said. “Retailers, citizens and visitors to Kaufman will all benefit as a result of this ‘never say never’ approach to the completion of the SH34 Bypass project. Kaufman has every right to stand tall and be proud today.”

Aug

12

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : August 12, 2016

 Jeremy Robert Lane


Jeremy Robert Lane

Monitor Staff Reports
ATHENS–An Athens man is charged with murder in the stabbing death of a 27-year-old New Jersey man following an Athens Police Department investigation Aug. 6.
Jeremy Robert Lane, 25, of Athens was charged with the stabbing death of Mark Groendyk, after he died of his wounds at East Texas Medical Center-Tyler.
At around 3:30 a.m. Athens police responded to a residence in the 800 block of Tannehill Way, where a party had been held earlier that night. Upon arrival, officers learned that the stabbing victim had been taken by private vehicle to the local hospital. Witnesses at the scene told investigators that they believed that Lane was possibly intoxicated and had tried to prevent him from driving. During the intervention, they said Lane reportedly pulled a knife and stabbed Groendyk in the abdomen. Lane then fled the scene in his vehicle.
Investigators processed the crime scene and obtained an arrest warrant for Lane on a murder charge. Officers learned his location could be in Flint.
Deputies from the Smith County Sheriff’s Department located Lane’s vehicle at a residence in the 18000 block of County Road 1100 in Smith County where he was taken into custody.
Lane was booked into the Henderson County Jail on the murder charge, his vehicle impounded and bond set at $1 million.
The event began when police responded to a reported stabbing at a residence in the 800 block of Tannehill Way at approximately 3:30 a.m. Aug 6. Upon arriving at the scene, police learned that the victim, Mark Groendyk, 27, of New Jersey had been transported to East Texas Medical Center-Athens by private vehicle. After his arrival, Groendyk was flown by air-ambulance to East Texas Medical Center-Tyler where he later died.
Police interviewed witnesses at the scene who stated that Groendyk and several other people attending the party believed that Jeremy Robert Lane, 25, of Athens, was possibly intoxicated and were trying to prevent him from driving away. At some time during the intervention, Lane reportedly pulled a knife and stabbed Groendyk in the abdomen. Lane fled the scene in his vehicle.
Athens Police Detectives processed the crime scene and were able to positively identify Lane as the assailant and obtain a warrant for his arrest on the charge of murder. During the search for Lane, officers were made aware of his possible whereabouts in Flint.
Deputies from the Smith County Sheriff’s Department located Lane’s vehicle at a residence in the 18000 block of County Road 1100 in Smith County where he was taken into custody.
Lane was booked into the Henderson County jail on the murder charge. His vehicle was impounded and transported back to Athens for processing. Bond was set for $1 million.