Police, inspectors visit Holguin's in-laws - again
by David Crowder
Posted on October 10, 2008
El Paso police and Environmental Services inspectors today were back at the residence of Bill and Guadalupe Dempseys, the in-laws of city Rep. Eddie Holguin, over the presence of 18-wheeler tractors on their property.
The city inspectors discussed the continuing problems and neighborhood complaints with the Dempseys but told Newspaper Tree that they issued no citations.
Neighbors who were watching said it appeared the police did issue one or more citations, but police spokesman Officer Chris Mears later said he could not confirm that.
“I have no statement,” Bill Dempsey said when asked if there had been any resolution of the situation that last week led residents of the Mission Valley’s Richard Lee subdivision to file an ethics complaint against Holguin.
His wife echoed him, saying, “We have no comment” before taking her husband’s arm and pulling him toward the couple’s property.
“I’ll talk to you later,” Bill Dempsey said as he was led away.
The Richard Lee residents, complying with a handshake agreement reached Sunday with Holguin, dropped their complaint Monday in exchange for the promised removal of eight or so tractors and an equal number of trailers parked on the Dempseys’ property and a parcel adjacent to the subdivision.
Today, six of the trailers on Ivey Partnership property were gone, as were two of of eight tractors that Bill Dempsey had on his land as part of his Horseshoe Enterprises Inc. trucking operation that is, itself, a violation of city ordinances.
Nancy Stoltz said the residents are upset that the Dempseys are reneging on the agreement.
She said the problem, apparently, was that the six people who included sworn affidavits concerning the Dempseys and Holguin in the ethics complaint refused to retract their statements in dismissing their complaint.
“They wanted us to withdraw our affidavits, too,” Stoltz said, adding they had no intention of taking back what they said because that might suggest their allegations were untrue.
They alleged, among other things, that Holguin failed to divulge his family ties to the Dempseys when complaints were going to him last summer, that he told the Dempseys who was complaining against them and that he did nothing with those complaints.
Before cutting off contact with Newspaper Tree last week, Holguin denied that he had ever spoken to Nancy Stoltz or anyone with a complaint against the Dempseys.
In response to a request from Newspaper Tree, the city furnished copies of records of the residents’ complaints, police reports and the city’s actions showing that Bill Dempsey has been cited a number of times in the past year by city inspectors and police over the presence of tractors and trailers on his property.
Those reports show that from August through October 2007, the Police Department received 20 calls about oversized vehicles in the Richard Lee subdivision.
On Aug. 2, the date of two complaints, an officer reported going to the Dempsey residence to advise him he was in violation of the City Code.
“Mr. Dempsey stated that the area is a farming and agriculture area, which allows oversized vehicles,” Officer P. Romero reported.
A city sign at the entrance to the subdivision prohibits vehicles over 26 feet long and the City Code prohibits large commercial from being kept on property zoned for farm and ranch use.
The City Code specifically prohibits oversized commercial vehicles on property zoned for farm and ranch use.
On Aug. 28 of last year, Dempsey contacted the Police Department himself to ask why he was receiving citations for his trucks.
The officer who made contact with him, P. Perez, stated in his report that Dempsey said “that he has a city permit to have his 18-wheelers on the property.”
Officer Perez reported telling Dempsey that such vehicles are prohibited, that a sign at the entrance to the subdivision says vehicles over 26 feet long aren’t allowed and that if Dempsey has permits, he should take them to the city to show officials.
Records generated by Holguin’s office indicate that Nancy Stoltz called his office in May and on Aug. 2, 2007 – the same day police received two complaints – to complain about weeds and trash in the neighborhood, not about Dempsey’s trucking business.
But in her affidavit, Stoltz said she spoke called and spoke to Holguin about the Dempseys trucks twice a month or so starting in June until sometime in August when she learned that Guadalupe Dempsey is the mother of Holguin’s wife.
Stoltz said she did call to Holguin’s office in about weeds and trash but could not explain why the reports from Holguin’s office didn’t include her calls to Holguin himself about Dempsey’s trucks.
“I have no idea why they’re not there,” she said.
To reach David Crowder, write to Dcrowder@epmediagroup.com or call (915) 587-6622
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