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Azle woman killed in collision

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Collision Stock

From Enterprise Staff

An Azle woman died from injuries sustained in an automobile/pedestrian accident that occurred at 10:50 a.m. Sunday in downtown Livingston.

According to the accident report filed by Livingston Police Officer Chad Lilley, a 2022 Chevrolet C2500 pickup truck driven by Wesley A. Bryant, 36 of Livingston, was stopped at a red light facing south on Washington Avenue, attempting to turn east. Teressa M. May, 55 of Azle, was attempting to cross the roadway heading north but was not in the crosswalk. As the light turned green for Bryant to go, he waited on two cars to continue north before making his turn to the east. He made his turn at the same time May began to cross the street east of the crosswalk, striking her.

May was transported to St. Luke’s Health-Memorial Hospital emergency room in Livingston via Allegiance Ambulance and died at 1:54 p.m.

No charges were filed in conjunction with the accident.

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Suspect sought in Tyler County


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Fugitive Stock 

Ephriam Wilson IIIEphriam Wilson IIIFrom Staff Reports

A suspect known to occasionally reside in Polk County is being sought by the Tyler County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) which is seeking the public’s help in apprehending the fugitive.

Ephriam Otto Wilson III is wanted on two charges, according to Tyler County Sheriff Bryan Weatherford. Wilson, 41, is known to stay in the White Tail Ridge community, as well as in Polk County, Weatherford said.

Wilson is a white male, stands six feet and two inches tall, weighs 200 pounds and has brown eyes. He is wanted for charges of theft of property (motion to revoke) and possession of a controlled substance (motion to adjudicate).

TCSO participates in the Crime Stoppers non-profit organization. Tips submitted in reference to Wilson’s whereabouts, or any other crime that is being investigated, are anonymous and may result in a cash reward. To submit information on this case, contact TCSO at 409-283-2172 or Crime Stoppers at 936-639-TIPS, or online at www.639TIPS.com.

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Egg prices are high, could go higher

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Cartons of eggs inside a Brookshire Brothers in College Station on Jan. 23. Egg prices have climbed to all-time highs amid the avian flu pandemic. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Michael MillerCartons of eggs inside a Brookshire Brothers in College Station on Jan. 23. Egg prices have climbed to all-time highs amid the avian flu pandemic. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Michael Miller

By Adam Russell

Texas AgriLife Extension

Egg prices continue to set all-time per-dozen price records, and a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service expert does not expect that trend to reverse in the near future.

David Anderson, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension economist, Bryan-College Station, said inflationary pressure and the worst avian flu outbreak in U.S. history have combined to send egg prices upward over much of the last year.  

For a year-to-year comparison, prices reached $4.25 per dozen on average in December 2022 across the nation, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture retail egg report. A dozen eggs was $1.79 at the same time last year.

The previous peak price occurred in September 2015 – $2.97 per dozen – and was also attributable to an avian influenza outbreak.

Anderson said he has been inundated with media requests on the subject as the topic of egg prices has become a major talking point among the consuming public.

“One reporter in Houston interviewed a backyard producer who told them this is the first time ever that it’s been cheaper to produce eggs than buy them at the store,” he said. “The situation with egg prices is something people are following now, but I think it is also something that happened over the course of time with several factors aligning.”

Avian flu driving egg prices upward

Higher production and logistical costs like feed and fuel have contributed, but the top factor driving egg prices to record highs is an ongoing outbreak of avian influenza, Anderson said. The highly pathogenic viral disease hit the U.S. poultry industry in early 2022 and cases continue to pop up at poultry farms nationwide.

The USDA-Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA-APHIS, reported almost 58 million commercial poultry birds, including broiler and egg-laying chickens, turkeys and various fowl have been lost to the virus, now reported in 46 states.

The USDA estimated around 43 million egg-laying hens were cut from the U.S. flock through December. The disease hits egg-laying chicken flocks harder because birds are in production much longer than broiler chickens, which increases their risk of exposure to the pathogen. 

The losses resulted in U.S. egg inventories that were 29% lower than January 2022, according to the report.

Anderson said the avian flu struck at a time when egg layer numbers had already been reduced.

There were 340 million table egg layer hens in the U.S. flock in December 2019. By December 2020, table layer numbers had been reduced by 13 million hens, to 327 million, as egg production responded to the COVID-19 pandemic and higher feed costs. The number of table layers remained static through December 2021, and then the avian influenza outbreak dropped the number of hens below 300 million by June.

Profit incentive has pushed poultry producers to restore flock numbers amid the outbreak, but egg-producing operations continue to be hit by the disease. USDA-APHIS disease control and containment protocol calls for euthanization and disposal of all birds in a house exposed to the disease.  

“We’ve seen producers respond by building back the flock numbers, but farms are still getting wiped out,” he said. “They were up to 308 million by December 2022, but it’s two steps forward, one step back.”

Egg demand peaks around Easter

Wholesale prices continue to rise, which indicates retail egg prices have not peaked, he said.  The teetering flock numbers couldn’t come at a worse time for consumers.

The January USDA egg report showed prices were steady to slightly lower than December, but yearly prices for eggs often peaks each spring due to Easter holiday egg hunts and baking, he said.

“We have a built-in holiday-driven demand for table eggs,” he said. “That demand bump is on the horizon, but the higher prices are also a signal to consumers to use less, so it will be interesting to see if there will be a demand adjustment this Easter.”

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Detectives looking for scammer

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Scam Stock

Jose Garza GonzalesJose Garza GonzalesOfficers are asking the public for help in nabbing a man accused of theft.

Polk County Sheriff’s Office Detectives are investigating a scamming case where the suspect took advantage of an elderly resident, defrauding her of a large amount of money.

Detectives identified the suspect as Jose Karim Garza-Gonzales, 33, of Kingwood, Texas. Garza-Gonzales is a contractor, who owns a business located in Kingwood.

The victim paid Garza-Gonzales over $28,000 up front, and he then never returned to perform any of the work. Subsequent to their investigation, detectives obtained a third-degree felony warrant on Garza-Gonzales, for theft of property from the elderly.

Garza-Gonzales is also wanted by Galveston County for a similar case of defrauding an elderly victim out of thousands of dollars and never completing any work.

Those with information in reference to this case or any other, or know the whereabouts of Garza-Gonzales, are asked to contact the sheriff’s office or a local law enforcement agency.

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Corrigan collision kills two students

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Two students have died from a vehicle accident Friday afternoon in Corrigan.

The deceased were students at Stephen F. Austin University traveling on Highway 59 at approximately 1:32 p.m.

A 2007 Nissan Versa was traveling southbound on Highway 59 in Corrigan, when an 18-wheeler was exiting Plant Road onto the highway. The 18-wheeler made a left-hand turn traveling north bound onto the highway. According to Corrigan Police, the Nissan Versa struck the trailer of the 18-wheeler, causing the vehicle to become entrapped under the trailer.

The Corrigan Police Department, Corrigan Volunteer Fire Department, and Texas Department of Public Safety all responded to the accident. The driver of the Nissan Versa, Micah McAfoose, 18, succumbed to his injuries upon impact. The passenger, Graylan Spring, 19, was airlifted to HCA Houston Healthcare in Conroe, where he later succumbed to his injuries received in the accident. The driver of the 18-wheeler is said to have suffered no injuries.

Both were student-athletes for the Lumberjacks. McAfoose was a baseball athlete from Cy Ranch High School and Spring was a football player from Vandegrift High School. A candlelight vigil was held on campus at Homer Bryce Stadium Monday.

The accident is under an ongoing investigation with the Corrigan Police Department.

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