DAYTON – Last week, a judge in Harris County issued a temporary restraining order against Jay Management Company, ordering the oil and gas operator to stop all services immediately in the small community of Dayton.
Since then, residents said the company continues production.
An emergency hearing was held Wednesday morning. Judge Robert Schaffer could not hear from both sides because of ongoing hearings but said the defendant must follow the TRO.
Attorney Roy Elizondo, who represents the families, had a meeting with attorneys from Jay Management Company to discuss possible solutions about the ongoing problems.
A resident invited KPRC 2 on his property to show us an active oil pump owned by Jay Management Company. The homeowner said the problem has been going on for at least a year despite a judge’s order to stop all production.
Court documents allege some residents are being harassed by law enforcement agencies and another resident was detained.
Elizondo said Jay Management Company continued production from May 19 through May 22.
“They were still producing oil on client’s properties which is in clear violation of the Temporary Restraining Order that the court issued,” he said.
Court documents also revealed that Rosa Hilda Alejandro was detained for trespassing by members of law enforcement working on behalf of Jay Management Company. Rosa said she was in her food truck on her own property. In a video recorded by Alejandro, she tells an officer no and repeatedly said this is my property.
“Since day one, Jay Management Company has watched, attacked and harassed me,” she said.
Residents also said several pumps are still being operated around the community and equipment is starting to deteriorate. Mariea Nares has a new leak on her property.
“They say that they fixed it but no it’s not, it’s not true,” she said.
Jay Management Company owns the mineral rights and families live on the property. Elizondo said each party has their own rights.
“Surface rights owners have rights and one of the main contingents is that a mineral interest owner or operator cannot pollute the surface estate, which is what they are doing in this case. There are statutory rights that clients have under the Texas national resource code,” Elizondo said.
Because of the repeated violations, families are requesting Jay Management pay $50,000 for each violation. The next court hearing is scheduled for next Tuesday.
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