Local News

Former Pharmacist Pleads Guilty to Child Sex Assault

James Carey Prosperie2TYLER — A retired Tyler pharmacist accused in a June 2013 incident pleaded guilty Monday to aggravated sexual assault of a child. According to Smith County judicial records, James Carey Prosperie was arrested September 3, 2013, after a standoff at his home on Jeff Davis Drive. KETK reports that Prosperie, 73, used to work at the now-closed Medicine Shoppe on East Fifth Street. A report from CPS states Prosperie confessed to a lawyer/friend he had sexual contact with a 14-year-old relative on at least two separate occasions. Prosperie’s sentencing is set for May 8.

Gladewater Man Indicted for 2013 Death of Hallsville Teen

cobyhudginsmugLONGVIEW — A Gladewater man has been indicted for the October 2013 death of a Hallsville girl. KETK reports Kilgore police arrested Coby Ray Hudgins, 22, who they believe shot and killed Kayla Elizabeth Williams, 17. The incident took place at a home in the 3000 block of Mustang Drive in Kilgore at 9:12 p.m. Saturday, October 4. According to police, Hudgins was last seen leaving the residence where police found Williams’s body. Gregg County Justice of the Peace Arthur Fort, who pronounced Williams dead at 4:00 a.m. Sunday, said Williams died instantly from an apparent gunshot wound to the head. (more…)

Former Policeman Indicted on Child Sex Assault Charge

lelandcarvermugLONGVIEW — A Gregg County Grand Jury has indicted a former Longview police officer on a single charge of aggravated child sexual assault. KETK reports Leland Thomas Carver, 69, was arrested February 12 on charges he sexually assaulted a child in his home in December 2013. According to a Longview police report, Carver told the child if she reported the attacks, she would be taken away from her family. Kristie Brian with the Longview Police Department confirmed he retired from the department over a decade ago. Carver remains in the Gregg County Jail on $50,000 bond.

Marshall Murder Suspect Arrested

Corey Lamar JohnsonMARSHALL – A suspect has been arrested in Louisiana in connection with a Marshall murder last month. U.S. Marshall’s in Tallulah, Louisiana took into custody yesterday Corey Lamar Johnson, 31, of Jefferson. A warrant had been issued for his arrest in the shooting of Jalen Juwan White, who would have turned 28 the day after his death. He was shot around 2:45am on March 24th in the 100 block of West Pinecrest at the Rumors Arcade. He was taken to Good Shepherd Medical Center in Marshall, where he later died. Johnson remains in jail in Louisiana, awaiting extradition back to Texas.

Gregg County Authorities Probe Home Invasion

thumb_police-8LONGVIEW — Sheriff Maxey Cerliano and the Gregg County Sheriff’s Office request assistance and information regarding a burglary/home invasion case that occurred at about 11:30 p.m. on April 15th. Authorities say three armed males dressed in black suits and hoods entered a north Gregg County home and confronted the two occupants. The occupants were bound and the suspects went through the house looking for valuables. After approximately thirty minutes, the residents were left unharmed and the suspects fled. The suspects’ vehicle information is not being released at this time. (more…)

New Details on 17-Year-Old’s Shooting Death

jacobjohnsonfbDIANA — There’s new information on the death of 17-year-old Jacob Michael Johnson (pictured), whose body was found recently in a vehicle in the Diana area. Two 14-year-olds have been arrested. According to KETK, an affidavit says one of the suspects stole his grandmother’s Saturn to drive himself and the other suspect to meet the victim. The affidavit says one of the suspects, nicknamed “Chicago,” shot Johnson twice in the head before leaving the scene. Pastor Marvin Denison’s church is on the same road where the body was found. Denison says he wishes he could have reached out to those involved beforehand.

East Texas Men Sentenced for Methamphetamine Trafficking

thumb_tyler-federalbuildingTYLER – Two 36-year-old men have been sentenced in Tyler to federal prison for drug trafficking violations in the Eastern District of Texas. The sentences were handed down Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Leonard E. Davis. Chadwick Marvin Thompson of McKinney pleaded guilty on Nov. 21, 2013, to conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and was sentenced to 240 months. As part of his plea, Thompson has agreed to the forfeiture of $8,700 cash along with six firearms and ammunition. Brandon Lee Lagrone of Carthage pleaded guilty on Dec. 9, 2013, to using a communication facility to facilitate the commission of a felony. He was sentenced to 36 months behind bars. (more…)

Wood County Man Sentenced for Firearms Violation

kerrysandersmugTYLER – A 29-year-old man from the Wood County community of Dike has been sentenced to federal prison for firearms violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales Wednesday. Kerry Lynn Sanders pleaded guilty on December 4, 2013, to possessing a stolen firearm and was sentenced to 120 months in federal prison Wednesday in Tyler by U.S. District Judge Leonard Davis. (more…)

Needles Found on East Texas Preschool Playground

hallsvillekidlnjHALLSVILLE — A Hallsville ISD family and the district are at odds about whether a 4-year-old boy was stabbed by a needle he found on the district’s Pre-K playground. That’s according to KETK and the Longview News-Journal. “What has upset me the most is the fact that they found two syringes and needles on the playground on the same day,” said Michael Kelly, who rushed his son Tyler to the emergency room when he saw what looked like a puncture wound on the boy’s hand. “Was there some kid that found it before my son and played with it and left it there?” The district agrees that the boy found two syringes Friday at Hallsville Little Cats Pre-K campus playground. One syringe was capped, and the other was not. No further action was taken because the child was not punctured, district officials said. (more…)

Another Scam Hits East Texas

TYLER — A phone scam targeting East Texans is on the rise. The scam artists are calling mobile or land lines claiming to be from the computer company Microsoft. They say they are from “Windows” or the “Windows help desk.” Their most recent target was Mack Barton of Tyler. (more…)

Chaplain Joins UT Health Northeast

Jack VossTYLER — The Rev. Jack Voss is the new chaplain at UT Health Northeast. Rev. Voss has served as senior pastor of a non-denominational church in Owasso, Oklahoma, where he and his wife, Janice, ministered for 20 years. He founded Marketplace Grill, a professional networking luncheon of Christian businessmen in Owasso. In addition, he has served as the president of the Collinsville, Texas, Ministerial Alliance and served in a volunteer chaplain program that he developed for the Collinsville Police Department. Rev. Voss, a native East Texan, received his bachelor’s of theology from Texas Bible College in Lufkin. He has preached and taught leadership in the African countries of Liberia, Malawi, and South Africa, as well as in the Asian countries of the Philippines and Taiwan. Other nations he has visited in his ministry are China, Mexico, New Zealand, and Ukraine.

State News

State Awards $4.8M to West Recovery Efforts

thumb_texas-stateof-seal-2WEST (AP) – State officials say an additional $4.8 million in disaster assistance will be provided to the Central Texas community of West as it continues to rebuild from the devastating fertilizer plant explosion last year that killed 15. The office of Gov. Rick Perry announced Wednesday that the funding comes at the request last week by West officials for additional state money. It will be used for work on water treatment and storage facilities, infrastructure repairs and other needs. The state now has given West about $8 million in total recovery aid. The Federal Emergency Management Agency earlier this year gave $20 million to help rebuild two schools destroyed in the April 17, 2013, blast. The explosion that was so intense it registered as a small earthquake and left a 93-foot crater.

Sen. Cruz Raises $890,000 in Year’s 1st Quarter

thumb_ted_cruz-5AUSTIN (AP) – Senator Ted Cruz has raised nearly $900,000 since the first of the year. But that’s about half what he collected in donations last fall after playing a key role in the government shutdown. Cruz’s campaign reports it received nearly 14,000 individual donations from January through March and all but about 650 were for less than $100.

Crews to Assess Damage to Rig Struck by Large Wave

GALVESTON (AP) – Crews will be assessing the damage that a large storm wave has done to a drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico about 130 miles off Galveston. The wave struck Tuesday and moved the rig more than 50 feet but it wasn’t drilling at the time and no oil spilled.

Houston Health Care Enrollment Exceeds Forecast

HOUSTON (AP) – More than 177,000 Houston residents have signed up for health insurance through the federal marketplace, far exceeding expectations for the city. According to an email obtained by The Associated Press, as of April 5 177,825 Houston residents enrolled for insurance under President Barack Obama’s signature law. The email was written by Marjorie McColl Petty, the regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Dallas. The expectation had been that 138,000 Houston residents would sign up. Petty told Houston officials the numbers reflect a successful 13-county regional effort. These are the first enrollment figures for Texas, where one in four are uninsured, the highest rate in the nation.

Houston Moves toward Innovative Recycling Plan

HOUSTON (AP) – A woeful recycling rate is prompting Houston officials to consider building an innovative $100 million plant that would sort and separate mixed residential trash. The city this week requested proposals from firms for its One Bin For All initiative. The project would allow people to mix recyclables, discarded food, yard clippings and other waste in a single container. The processing plant, run by a private company, would then sort the contents. The Houston Chronicle reports officials hope to nearly quadruple the city’s recycling rate. They aim to have taxpayers spend no more on waste disposal than they already do. Houston now sends 81 percent of its waste to landfills, leading to significant disposal costs. Officials want to cut that amount to 45 percent and then eventually to 25 percent.

McCartney to Visit Lubbock

LUBBOCK (AP) – Paul McCartney is coming to Lubbock in June. He’ll open the U.S. leg of his world tour with a June 14th show at United Spirit Arena on the Texas Tech campus. Lubbock’s mayor says McCartney reached out to ask to play in the hometown of one of his musical influences, Buddy Holly.