Police Make Arrest for Drug Possession

Levelland police made a routine traffic stop which resulted in a felony arrest for drug possession.

Police reportedly made the stop in the 200 block of Oak Street. Police reportedly made the stop and noted the driver was shaking. They asked the driver, if she had used any narcotic substance or if there was anything in the vehicle, the driver denied both, and granted the officer permission to search the vehicle, however, then decided she did not want them to search her vehicle. Another officer with a K9 unit arrived and the K9 gave a positive alert on the vehicle. A Special Agent with the Department of Public Safety arrived and assisted with the search. The search of the vehicle yielded 1.4 grams of heroin and a syringe, which were located in the passenger seat area.

Erica Mulkey, 45 was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.

In a separate traffic stop, police made contact with a driver who immediately handed the officer drug paraphernalia, which gave officers a probable cause for search of the vehilce. A DPS Special Agent assisted in the search which yielded a bag of methamphetamine and a meth pipe. Elizabeth Berlanga, 38 was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.

Mulkey has bonded out of jail and Berlanga remains in the Hockley County Jail on a $5,000 bond.

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Levelland Fire Department Responds to Separate Blazes

The Levelland Fire Department responded to a structure fire Sunday afternoon.

At approximately 12:05 pm Sunday, the fire department received a call of a structure fire at 144 Mandy Circle in Levelland. According to reports, smoke was coming from the bottom of the trailer house. When firefighters arrived, neighbors had extinguished the blaze.

Firefighters indicated in their report that the fire started on the bottom edge of the home, it was also noted that the gas fed into the home through a flex line at the bottom of the trailer house, the line reportedly had a small pin hole in it and reportedly it likely rubbed or sparked on the metal under-skirting of the trailer house. Damage to the home was listed at approximately $500.

The fire department responded to the report of a bull dozer on fire on Monday afternoon around 12:40 pm. The fire was reported in the area of FM 41 and Chickadee Road. When firefighters arrived, they found that the cab and engine compartment of the bull dozer was fully engulfed in flames. Firefighters extinguished the blaze and cleared the scene in just over one hour. Damage to the machinery was listed at $200,000 and was declare a total loss.

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Levelland City Council Holds Regular Meeting

Levelland City Council held their regular meeting Monday night.

Pete Cunningham spoke to the council during the public forum portion of the meeting about the Cemetery rules and guidelines. He stated that in 2018 he placed a flag pole and flag on his late wife’s grave and a few days later he returned and found that they had been removed. He said that he spoke with the supervisor and was told that it was against the rules. He was advised by his attorney to contact the city manager, which he did and was told that the rules did not explicitly says flags were forbidden. The City Manager contacted the cemetery advisory board and they advised they were not allowed. Cunningham asked that the city be fair with everyone, noting that their are several flags at several grave sites currently. He asked that the cemetery rules not be acted upon until members of the public have time to review.

The council took action to approve refinancing the 2009 Certificates of Obligation which paid for the rail park. The city obtained the debt for the purpose of phase 1 of the rail park, however they are paid for with LEDC funds. Jason Hughes from Hilltop Securities, the city’s financial adviser spoke to the council, noting that rates have gone down sine the city took the debt in 2009 so the city is looking to refinance to get a lower rate, the notes would be paid off at the same time, this does not extend the debt. They are looking at selling the debt through a private sale list including local banks. They are looking at refinancing at a conservative rate of 2.3%. The council approved the refinance on a unanimous vote.

The council took action to award the bid for the Wastewater Irrigation Pivot System to South Plains Valley Irrigation at a cost of $299,940.

The cemetery advisory board met recently and is recommending to allow two memorials for Veterans as well as cremations that are buried on the grave site of another. The second marker would be placed at the foot and must be flush with the ground. The city manager also stated that in 2009 the cemetery advisory board met extensively concerning many flags in the cemetery at grave sites and noted that any poles there or flags in the cemetery at that time would be grand fathered in but no additional flags would be allowed. The cemetery advisory board discussed the issue again and did not wish to make any changes to the current policy. It was noted that the large flag on the pole at the entrance to the cemetery is meant to honor all veterans. It was noted that the city council does have the ultimate authority in a rule change. Members of the council are questioning the rule and feel they would have a hard time telling someone they can’t put a flag on the grave of someone which served this country. Councilman JoeBill Vardeman requested that the cemetery advisory board meet again and define the proper height for flag poles and flag sizes and look at amending the rule banning flagpoles at grave sites.

The council took action to nominate William Clements, Larry Carter, Bobby Neal, Ronnie Watkins and Paul Ochoa to Hockley County Appraisal District Board.

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Obituary: Lawrence Williams, 75 of Levelland

Funeral Services are scheduled for Lawrence Williams, 75 of Levelland. Services are set for 10:00 am on Tuesday, October 8th, 2019 in the Fifth Street Baptist Church in Levelland. Burial will follow in the City of Levelland Cemetery. He passed away on Wednesday, October 2nd.

For more information: https://klvtnews.wordpress.com/obituaries

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Arrest Made After Struggle with Police

A Levelland Police Officer was on routine patrol early Friday morning saw a suspicious person coming out of an alley in the 800 block of Houston street. According to reports, the officer observed that the subject sped up when he spotted the officer. The officer activated his emergency lights to make contact with the subject. The subject immediately raised his arms and asked the reason for the stop. As the officer approached, he asked if had any weapons as he was agitated, the officer reached for the suspect’s left arm, the suspect pulled away and began to spin away telling the officer he had no reason to touch him, the officer grabbed the straps of a backpack the suspect was wearing to control him. The suspect continued to attempt to pull away.

The suspect continued to struggle with the officer, back-up arrived and the suspect continued to struggle. Officers were forced to tase the suspect numerous times before they could gain control. At one point in the struggle, the suspect fled from officers, he was located near the 700 block of Avenue I. The suspect was finally placed under arrest after several minutes of struggling with officers. It took three officers with the Levelland Police Department as well as Hockley County Sheriff’s Office Deputies to place the subject under arrest.

After being arrested the subject continued yelling at officers and yelling obscenities toward the officers. During a field search, officers located a baggie containing a crystal like substance in his left pocket. A homemade pipe and a spoon with drug residue was also found in his backpack when he was being booked into jail. The crystal like substance tested positive for methamphetamine and weighed approximately .3 grams. A 22 caliber bullet was also found, although no handgun was found.

Dominic Longoria, 20 was arrested and charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance, Evading Arrest and Resisting Arrest. He is being held in the Hockley County Jail on a combined $9,000 bond.

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Levelland Police Department Announces Attempted Scam

The Levelland Police Department received several calls Monday afternoon concerning a scam which is utilizing the police department phone number.

Residents are stating they have received call from the police department number advising them they are about to be arrested. In order to avoid being arrested, they are being asked to provide personal information .

This reminder the Levelland Police Department, Hockley County Sheriff’s Office or the Texas Department of Public Safety will not call and advise of a pending arrest or ask for personal information. You are further reminded to not release your date of birth, social security number, passwords or any other personal identifying information to anyone over the phone.

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Levelland ISD Board of Trustees Hold Special Meeting

The Levelland ISD Board of Trustees met in a special meeting on Monday afternoon.

The board took action to approve nominations for the Hockley County Appraisal District Board of Directors. The board approved nominating Ronnie Watkins and DeEtte Edens as the Levelland ISD representatives on the board. Watkins has served on the board for the past four years.

Each taxing entity will be making nominations for the board and will vote on the representatives for the board during their November meeting.

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