Supreme Court Justice Thomas Appears in Tyler
TYLER (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court justice best known for his silence on the bench stood before an East Texas audience to entertain questions. Justice Clarence Thomas appeared Tuesday night at the University of Texas at Tyler for a question-and-answer session. The 66-year-old Thomas has served on the bench since 1991. It’s been more than eight years since he asked a question in the courtroom during arguments in the case. On Tuesday, he expressed firm belief in the strict construction of the Constitution. As a judge, he says he’s “not into creative writing.” And he said he’s motivated by the belief that if the country “is not perfect, it is perfectible.” Thomas is one of the court’s conservatives and has been part of narrow majorities on several key issues in recent years.
Palestine Residents Comment on Peterson Case
PALESTINE (AP/Staff) — Palestine residents weigh in on the case of hometown hero Adrian Peterson. Several spoke with KETK after the star running back was indicted for child abuse. One commented, “I was brought up the same way myself, and I would do the same thing.” Another remarked, “If it’s his child, then maybe he shouldn’t have done it in private, but I don’t think he should go through all this hoopla.” Still another chimed in, “I don’t know him, but I’m pretty sure that he is a good guy… but still, not to the extreme where you get investigated and your kids have bruises on them, especially with a switch.”
Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said Wednesday the team “made a mistake” in bringing back Peterson following his indictment. The Vikings had benched Peterson for last Sunday’s loss to New England. But the next day, the team said it would bring him back and sponsors reacted swiftly. The Vikings had at least one major sponsorship suspended. Several NFL advertisers, including Anheuser-Busch, expressed concern about the league’s recent off-the-field problems. The governor said it was embarrassing. Early Wednesday, the team said Peterson would be barred from all activities. Co-owner Mark Wilf said the decision was “absolutely not” related to sponsor concerns.
In another development, Nike has suspended its sponsorship deal with Peterson following the child abuse allegations. The Beaverton, Oregon-based shoemaker issued a statement Wednesday morning that said Nike “in no way condones child abuse or domestic violence of any kind and has shared our concerns with the NFL.”
Peterson was indicted after using a wooden switch to spank his 4-year-old son earlier this year. Peterson has taken responsibility for the incident, insisting he meant no harm to the child. The running back has an Oct. 8 court appearance scheduled in Montgomery County, outside of Houston, on a felony charge of injury to a child. Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman says he doesn’t know how long the case will take and “until these legal matters are resolved,” Peterson will remain away from the team.
Man Indicted for East Texas Murder Turns Himself In
QUITMAN — A man accused of murdering a Mineola teenager has turned himself in after being indicted by a Wood County grand jury. According to KETK, District Attorney Jim Wheeler says Jason Russell Walters, 41, of Mineola, was indicted on Friday. He was booked into the Wood County Jail Wednesday. Walters allegedly killed Christopher James Griffin, 19, of Mineola, with a gunshot wound to his neck. A judge upped his bond amount to $250,000 following the jury’s decision. The shooting occurred at 11:30 p.m. at the E-Z Mart, located in the 100 block of North Pacific Street in Mineola, on June 15. The suspect was released following his arrest on June 16 after posting $100,000 bond.
Justice Sam Griffith to Retire Next Year
TYLER — Justice Sam Griffith has announced his plans to retire from the Twelfth Court of Appeals early in 2015. According to a news release from the Twelfth Court of Appeals, Griffith, 63, was elected to serve on the court in 2000. He began his service on January 1, 2001, joining then-Chief Justice Leonard Davis and Justice Jim Worthen. In his first term, he also served with Louie Gohmert, before his election to Congress, and former Justice Diane DeVasto. In 2006, Griffith was unopposed as he was reelected to a second six-year term. That same year, he and Worthen were joined on the court by Justice Brian Hoyle. The three have now served together for over eight years. Griffith was again reelected in 2012 unopposed.
Griffith resides in Starrville on the working farm that has been in the family since 1872. His community involvement has included being Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Y.M.C.A. of Tyler/Smith County; Secretary and member of the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Club of Smith County; and member of the board of the East Texas Farm and Ranch Club. He has also been actively involved with the East Texas Food Bank’s four-acre food garden from its inception, which, in its first four years of production, has produced over 173,000 pounds (over eighty-six tons) of fresh vegetables for the hungry of East Texas. He has also won over fifty ribbons from the East Texas State Fair for vegetables he has raised.
Griffith has taught U.S. Constitutional Law at Yunnan University School of Law in Kunming, the People’s Republic of China, and during the first of his three mission trips to Iraq, taught U.S. Constitutional Law at Koya University in Koya, Iraq. He has also written, delivered, or published articles on topics ranging from law to social psychology, from farming to devotionals, and including “Debt Liability of Marital Property in Texas,” published in the The Community Property Journal.
Griffith has also led or participated in mission trips in Sudan, Rwanda, Uganda, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, and Guatemala, and is involved in a water well digging ministry in South Sudan through which he has provided twelve water wells. In 2011, he received a “Global Encourager” award from the Global Evangelistic Relations Committee for the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention for his mission work in Iraq. He received the 2013 “Servant Leadership Award” from the Texas TeenPact Leadership Schools.
According to the news release, Griffith plans to focus on his Christian mission work after he leaves the court. He also plans to complete several writing projects and to spend more time on his Starrville farm. Current Chief Justice Worthen said, “The Twelfth Court of Appeals will greatly miss Justice Griffith. He has been a wonderful colleague for these fourteen years and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
Ex-Husband of Missing Kilgore Woman to Be Extradited to Colorado
MARSHALL — A man who has been named a person of interest in the disappearance of a Kilgore woman will be transferred to Arapahoe County, Colorado, after a Marshall judge found no probable cause to hold him. According to KETK, Judge Brad Morin’s Office reports Craig Deallen Davison, 48, of Hallsville, appeared in court on Tuesday. The court ruled Harrison County did not have sufficient evidence to hold the suspect on an assault family violence charge, a felony because of a 2005 conviction in Gregg County for the same crime However, Harrison County District Attorney Coke Solomon said the case is still pending. “At this time there isn’t sufficient evidence to hold him on the charge. Once additional evidence is available, then we can present the case to the grand jury,” stated Solomon.
Davison would have been released, but the Aparahoe County District Attorney’s Office placed two holds on him. The suspect is wanted on two warrants in Colorado: failure to comply with sex offense and failure to comply with alleged homicide. Both warrants stem from a probation violation, according to county officials. An extradition hearing is expected in the coming weeks.
Davison was arrested July 29 for a previous domestic violence charge involving his ex-wife, 43-year-old Christina Rea Davison. She was last seen at her home in May on the 500 block of Elder Road in Kilgore. Her disappearance made national news earlier this month when she was featured on NBC’s “Dateline: Missing in America.” The FBI is also assisting in her case.
Suspect Identified in Palestine Post Office Shooting
PALESTINE — The Palestine Police Department has identified the woman who allegedly shot at her ex-boyfriend at the local post office last week. According to KETK, police say Stephanie Yarbrough, 33, of Palestine, was arrested for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The incident happened last Friday at around 4:00 p.m. at the post office, located in the 1200 block of North Link Street. Officials say the woman ran from the building, jumped into a vehicle, and left the scene before police arrived. A short time later, Yarbrough turned herself in to police. She was taken into custody following questioning. Yarbrough faces up to 20 years in prison. She remains in the Anderson County Jail on a $150,000 bond. The investigation is ongoing, and other charges may be filed at a later date from an investigation carried out by the U.S. Postal Service.
UT Tyler Once Again Recognized for Online Education Efforts
TYLER — The University of Texas at Tyler has once again been recognized for creative uses and support of distance learning technology in the classroom, Dr. Ross Sherman, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs, announced. Dr. Wesley Hickey received an “Outstanding Distance Learning Faculty” Award at the 2014 Northeast Texas Consortium of Colleges and Universities Distance Learning Conference.
Hickey is a UT Tyler associate professor of educational leadership, and he serves as the College of Education and Psychology interim dean and superintendent program coordinator. He was recognized for his work in the superintendent program, which was one of the first in Texas to offer the full certification entirely in an online format, according to a UTT news release. Officials say Hickey’s classes are noted for their rigor and relevance. His students average a 95 percent pass rate on the state certification exam.
“Dr. Hickey is a worthy recipient of the Outstanding Distance Learning Faculty Award for UT Tyler. Through his efforts, he has increased the accessibility of the superintendent certification for students throughout the state,” said Cindy Smith, director of instructional design in the UT Tyler Department of Academic Transformation. Each higher education institution in the consortium nominated faculty and support personnel to be recognized at the conference as outstanding leaders in distance education. He is the eighth UT Tyler faculty member to receive this honor.
Mexican President Invited to See Texas Law Enforcement Efforts
AUSTIN (AP) – Governor Rick Perry has invited Mexico’s president to see law enforcement efforts on the Texas side of the border. Enrique Pena Nieto has criticized the National Guard troop deployment at the border, while Perry has faulted the Mexican leader for failing to control immigration and crime. Texas says it needs the troops to stop drug traffickers.
Texas Limits New AP History Course’s Influence
AUSTIN (AP) – Texas is limiting the influence of a new national Advanced Placement U.S. History course and exam amid conservative complaints that they’re rife with anti-American bias. The State Board of Education voted 12-3 on Wednesday to require that all Texas AP history classes adhere to state-mandated curriculum standards, rather than teaching to the national test. The AP exam was overhauled this year to de-emphasize memorization. The new AP course is designed to better prepare students for the revamped test. But conservative activists say the American heritage is negatively portrayed. Some have called for blocking the new exam statewide, but the board lacks the jurisdiction. Instead, its vote means Texas high school students still take the new AP exam starting in May. But they’ll prepare for it by studying Texas-sanctioned curriculum.
Corpus Christi Woman’s Murder Conviction Overturned
AUSTIN (AP) – The highest appeals court in Texas has overturned the murder conviction of Hannah Overton of Corpus Christi. Overton will be granted a new trial in the poisoning death of her foster son. The four-year-old had high sodium levels in his system when he died in 2006. Overton argued she had ineffective counsel during her 2007 trial.
Texas Organizations Try to Block Historical Racing
AUSTIN (AP) – Several organizations that benefit from charitable bingo are trying to stop a new form of betting in Texas. The Austin American-Statesman)reports the American Legion in Temple, Save Barton Creek Association in Austin, and the Humane Society of Dallas County have filed a lawsuit against the Texas Racing Commission in a Travis County court. The groups hope to prevent the commission from continuing with its plan to allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks. Historical racing terminals, which look like to slot machines, allow people to bet on previously run races that are stripped of identifying markers. Advocates say it’s a necessary form of betting that will boost purses and establish racing a viable business in the state. Opponents say historical racing is gambling and should receive legislative approval before it’s implemented.
Auto Wrecks with at Least 3 Fatalities on the Rise
HOUSTON (AP) – The number of auto accidents involving three or more deaths has more than doubled in Texas since 2010, with more fatalities occurring along roads seeing increased traffic because of the oil and gas boom. An investigation by the Houston Chronicle shows the number of triple fatalities – accidents with at least three deaths – went from 72 in 2010 to 148 last year. Law enforcement reports do not specify whether the accidents involved oil and gas vehicles. But roads with more oil field-related traffic have seen a greater number of accidents than other major roadways across the state. Studies show that oil field workers who work long shifts and have long commutes are 8.5 times more likely to die in a crash than other private employees.
Long-Empty El Paso Building to Become Hotel
EL PASO (AP) – A downtown El Paso office building will become a hotel. Starwood Hotels and Resorts plans to convert the 15-story O.T. Bassett Tower into a 100-room boutique hotel. The art deco building from 1930 has been mostly empty since 2007. The hotel could open in 2016.
You Tell Me Texas by Paul Gleiser
Being a good and effective parent to a small child is never-ending and to an astonishing degree thankless. The same is true for standing a never-ending watch in the defense of freedom. Read More | Visit The You Tell Me Texas Blog
Having the occasional case of the blues is one thing. Depression that affects your ability to go to work, do the things you like to do and maintain relationships with friends and loved ones is something entirely different. In this post to HealthConnection.TV, UT Health Northeast clinical psychologist Dr. Charles Walker answers questions about recognizing and treating clinical depression. Go to: http://www.uthealth.org/healthconnection/
Today in History
Today in History for 17th September 2014- Historical Events 1923 - Sutton Vane's "Outward Bound," premieres in London 1944 - Dutch begin railroad strike against German occupiers 1967 - Shirley Englehorn wins LPGA Shirley Englehorn Golf Invitational 1968 - Gaylord Perry (Giants) no-hits St Louis Cardinals, 1-0 2007 - AOL, once the largest ISP in the U.S., officially announces plans to refocus the company as an advertising business and to r... Read more on HistoryOrb.com
Health Recipe of the Day!
Low-Fat Recipes: Apple and Honey Sorbet
4.69 / 5 Stars | 12 Reviews
"This is the sorbet I served on Rosh Hashana meal between first and main course. It is white flecked with bright green, tangy from the green apples, and sweet with honey. Fresh and fabulous. Shana Tova! I recommend eucalyptus blossom honey, easily found in Israel."