Officer Cleared in Fatal Shooting
LONGVIEW — Longview Police Officer Johnny Lyons has been cleared of any wrongdoing by a Gregg County grand jury in the August 7 shooting of Regan Wagner. Police say Lyons shot and killed Wagner near Akin Park during a daytime traffic stop after Wagner displayed a firearm and refused repeated requests to put it down. KETK and the Longview News-Journal report Wagner, 23, of Longview, had been pulled over for an expired inspection sticker. Longview police initially said Wagner was killed during an exchange of gunfire but later said Wagner did not fire any shots. Longview police spokeswoman Kristie Brian said Wagner showed a gun but could not confirm whether it was loaded. Read more …
Abbott Meets Local Lawmakers for Roundtable
TYLER — Governor-elect Greg Abbott was in Tyler Thursday. KETK reports he met with East Texas legislators on what the new session would hold. He says border security, education, and transportation are his top priorities. Abbott says President Obama’s executive order on immigration is extremely troubling. According to Abbott, “The president himself said more than 20 times that he didn’t have the authority, as the chief executive, to create a law like this. And then by executive order he did it! And he said, ‘I have just created a new law.’ That is unconstitutional.” In turn, Abbott plans to add $300 million in funding, as well as deploy additional state troopers, for tighter border security. He said, “As governor I will step up and take charge, and ensure that we have a secure border.” Read more …
Glass Dragon Owner Seeks to Reopen Store
LONGVIEW — The owner of the Glass Dragon and Longview Vapor Store, awaiting trial on federal drug distribution and money laundering charges, filed a motion Thursday asking that he be allowed to operate the store on Fredonia Street to sell e-cigarettes and the liquids they use. According to KETK and the Longview news-Journal, Jeremy Chad Tidwell was named in a sealed indictment in November by a federal grand jury on five charges along with his wife, Shanna Peek Tidwell. His brother, Brian Tidwell, was indicted on three related charges. All three were arrested in a Dec. 3 raid on the stores by the Drug Enforcement Administration and representatives from area law enforcement agencies. The charges involve the selling of K-2, or so-called synthetic marijuana. The federal agency began investigating the case in March. Read more …
Organizer Pleased with Rally Spurred by Police-Related Deaths
TYLER — The organizer of a downtown Tyler rally Thursday afternoon says she’s pleased with the event. Working with a new group called Tyler United, Ambra Phillips sought to bring attention to recent police-related deaths in Missouri, New York, and elsewhere. Phillips pointed out that she wished to do so in a peaceful manner and says that’s the way it worked out, except for a brief disruption that was quickly quelled. Phillips said we need to “stop seeing each other’s differences as threats — learn to look at each other and appreciate that we are all different.” Read more …
Man Gets Ten Years in Henderson County Meth Case
ATHENS — A former Seven Points resident heads to prison on a methamphetamine-related charge. On Wednesday morning, Ray Glenn Followwell, 50, pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. According to KETK, Followwell was indicted by a Henderson County Grand Jury following an investigation by Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Wick Gabbard. On November 18th of last year, Gabbard obtained and executed a narcotics search warrant on Followwell’s residence off CR 2428. Other law officers assisted in the execution of the warrant. Read more …
Tyler Fire Department Wishes Everyone a Happy and Safe Holiday Season
* Space Heaters:
o Maintain a clear space of 3 feet around the device.
o Ensure that portable heaters have a safety switch that will turn off the device if it gets tipped over. Read more …
Texas Inaugural Committee Announces New Appointments
AUSTIN – Following last week’s announcement of its executive leadership team, the 2015 Texas Inaugural Committee Friday announced the remainder of its committee appointments. Three of those chosen are from East Texas. The people on the list were selected by Governor-elect Greg Abbott and Lieutenant Governor-elect Dan Patrick to oversee January’s celebration honoring the state’s newly-elected leaders. The governor’s appointments include Andrea and Brandon Steele of Tyler, and JoAnn Fleming of Flint is listed among the lieutenant governor’s appointments. Read more …
New Civil War Exhibit at TMA
TYLER — The Tyler Museum of Art joins the nationwide commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the U.S. Civil War in its newest major exhibition, “Between the States: Photographs of the American Civil War from the George Eastman House Collection.” The exhibition runs through Sunday, February 15, in the TMA’s North Gallery. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. Hours on Sunday are from 1:00 till 5:00 p.m. Read more …
Texas Death among 5 Reported in Listeria Outbreak
DALLAS (AP) – Texas health officials say one person has died and three became sick in a food poisoning outbreak linked to prepackaged caramel apples. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday said the listeria outbreak includes 10 states and five deaths linked to the bacterial illness. More than two dozen people got sick. Minnesota reported two deaths. The Texas Department of State Health Services reports four cases, including one death that’s among the five listed by the CDC. No formal cause of death was released. Spokeswoman Christine Mann says the Texas cases involved adults with pre-existing medical conditions. They were sick between Oct. 17 and Nov. 7. Mann declined to release further details. Consumers are being warned not to eat prepackaged caramel apples amid the search for the contamination source.
Texas’ November Jobless Rate Falls to 4.9 Percent
AUSTIN (AP) – The Texas unemployment rate has declined for the third month in a row to 4.9 percent in November as the state continues to add jobs. The Texas Workforce Commission said Friday that Texas added 34,800 seasonally adjusted total nonfarm jobs in November for a total of 441,200 jobs added since last year. The November seasonally adjusted unemployment was slightly lower from 5.1 percent in October, and down from 6.1 percent a year ago. The rate was 5.2 percent in September and 5.3 percent in August. Midland had the lowest unemployment rate in November, at 2.3 percent. The McAllen-Edinburg-Mission area had the highest, at 8.2 percent. Seven of 11 major industries added jobs in Texas over the month, including an additional 13,500 jobs in professional and business services.
Court: Texas “Stand Your Ground” Trial Unfair
HOUSTON (AP) – A Texas appeals court says a 49-year-old man who was convicted of murder after jurors rejected his “stand your ground” self-defense claim didn’t get a fair trial and deserves a new one. Raul Rodriguez was sentenced to 40 years in prison for the 2010 slaying of a 36-year-old man during an argument over loud music in a rural Harris County neighborhood northeast of Houston. The 1st Texas Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the instructions given to the jury in Rodriguez’s 2012 trial, before deliberations, were too confusing. Among evidence at the trial was a video, made by Rodriguez, of the confrontation he had with Kelly Danaher and how he kept repeating he feared for his life before the dispute culminated with Danaher’s fatal shooting.
Group Backs Plan to Turn Astrodome into Large Park
HOUSTON (AP) – A national research group says the iconic but shuttered Houston Astrodome should be saved and is supporting efforts to turn it into a massive indoor park and green space area. At a meeting Friday, a panel of the Urban Land Institute presented a report detailing a plan to create a civic space. It could include gardens, areas for festivals, running and biking trails and exhibition space. The report did not offer a price tag for the proposal.Harris County Judge Ed Emmett – who proposed the park idea earlier this year – says the proposal has a good chance of succeeding, but added it wasn’t immediately known if officials would have to ask voters to help fund it.
Indiana Official Heads to UT
INDIANAPOLIS (AP/Staff) – A top adviser to Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has resigned to take a job at the University of Texas. Pence announced Friday that he had accepted the resignation of Ryan Streeter, who is leaving his position as deputy chief of staff of policy and strategy to become director of the Center for Politics and Governance at the University of Texas. Streeter previously served in various roles in the private and public sectors, including as special assistant to President George W. Bush. Pence said that over the past two years Streeter had been critical in developing many major agenda items.
Texas Eatery Worker Gets Mink Coat from Customer
LIBERTY (AP) – A worker at a Houston-area fast-food restaurant has received a $10,000 mink coat from a customer who literally offered the fancy fur right off her back. Cheryl Semien says she was working at a Whataburger in Liberty when she complimented the driver about the beautiful fur coat she wore. The customer was picking up food Wednesday when she took off the coat and handed it to Semien via the drive-thru window. KTRK-TV reports Semien says she didn’t know the woman who gave her the coat, estimated to be worth $10,000. Semien says she’ll treasure the mink and can’t wait to pair it with some boots.
You Tell Me Texas by Paul Gleiser
Sad is a word we use to describe someone who is feeling blue. When spelled in all caps, SAD is also an acronym for a clinical condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder. People who suffer from this condition find that their mood and outlook turns negative as the days grow shorter and colder in the winter. In the latest post to HealthConnection.TV, UT Health Northeast clinical psychologist Dr. Kathryn Wortz discusses diagnosing and treating SAD. Go to: http://www.uthealth.org/healthconnection/
Today in History
Today in History for 20th December 2014- Historical Events 1830 - Great Britain, France, Prussia, Austria and Russia recognize Belgium 1922 - 14 republics form Union of Soviet Socialistic Republics (USSR) 1943 - "Internationale" is no longer USSR National Anthem 1987 - Nancy Lopez/Miller Barber wins LPGA Mazda Golf Championship 2005 - The first same sex civil partnerships in Scotland are celebrated. 2005 - 2005 New York City transit stri... Read more on HistoryOrb.com
Health Recipe of the Day!
Healthy Desserts: Rachel's Cream Cheese Fruit Salad
4.41 / 5 Stars | 59 Reviews
by Rachel Lewis
"This is a wonderful summer salad because it takes advantage of all the fresh fruit at the market, and because it has a glorious dressing made from strawberry flavored cream cheese, brown sugar vanilla and cinnamon."