Tyler Murder Suspect Pleads Guilty, Receives 35 Years in Prison
TYLER — A Tyler man was sentenced to 35 years in prison for murder after accepting a plea deal Monday morning. According to KETK, the Smith County District Attorney’s Office reports John Grimes IV, 26, was sentenced in the 7th District Court. Grimes is deemed responsible for the murder of 65-year-old Tony Jeter. On December 1, 2013, Grimes was taken into custody and charged with capital murder after police responded to a home in the 500 block of East Bow Street and found Jeter’s body. Police said he died from a stab wound. Read more …
Woman Accused of Sexually Assaulting Teen
MARSHALL — An East Texas woman was taken into custody following her alleged sexual assault of an underage teenager. According to KETK, the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office reports Angela Van Zandt, 38, of Diana, has been charged with sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy. Authorities say the woman is not a teacher, as has been reported by another news agency. Van Zandt was released on $100,000 bond.
City of Tyler Awarded $174,030 for Veteran Housing
TYLER — The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has awarded the city of Tyler Neighborhood Services Department funding to administer 25 new Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) Vouchers. According to a city news release, HUD-VASH is a unique partnership between the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and HUD that provides long-term case management, supportive services, and permanent housing support for chronically homeless veterans. The VA provides case management and eligibility screening services, while HUD allocates permanent housing subsidies from its Housing Choice Voucher Program. Read more …
Officials Say Oil Spill Has Not Reached Caddo Lake
MOORINGSPORT, La. (AP) – Cleanup crews continue to mop up a 4,000-barrel oil spill into a four-mile stretch of Tete Bayou northwest of Shreveport. Officials said Saturday that the oil has been contained without reaching Caddo Lake, which straddles the Texas-Louisiana state line and provides drinking water for some water systems. The oil spilled from the Mid-Valley pipeline, a line owned by Sunoco Logistics Partners which carries crude oil from Longview, Texas to Samaria, Michigan. The Times reports the spill happened the morning of Oct. 13. Three families near the site evacuated, with Sunoco paying their expenses. Read more …
New Electronic Sample Ballots Now Available
TYLER — The Smith County Elections Office is now offering an Interactive ExpressPass Sample Ballot to all registered voters in the county. According to a county news release, the move part of the county’s commitment to provide quality service to voters. Officials say the system is convenient, simple, and completely safe for voter use. You can go to https://www.smith-county.com/Government/Departments/Elections/Default.aspx to find the new sample ballots. Read more …
Van Zandt Co. Crime Stoppers Hands Out $600 in Rewards
CANTON — Van Zandt County Crime Stoppers has authorized $600 in rewards for tips that helped lead to the recent arrests of three men, all from Wills Point, in separate incidents. The Crime Stoppers board approved a $250 reward for a tipster who notified authorities about a man wanted for theft, including a stolen camping trailer. A $200 reward was authorized for a tip that led to a man sought for allegedly violating a protective order in Dallas County. Authorities tracked the man down at a school in Wills Point. Finally, a $150 reward was approved for a tip that led to the arrest of a man wanted by Van Zandt County authorities on a fugitive warrant. Read more …
Dallas Officials: 120 Still on Ebola Monitoring
DALLAS (AP) – Texas health officials say 120 people are still being monitored for possible infection with Ebola because they may have had contact with one of the three people who got the disease in Dallas. Officials said Monday that 43 of 48 people on an original watch list had passed the 21-day incubation period for the viral disease and are now in the clear. But others who cared for a Liberian man who died Oct. 8 at a Dallas hospital remain at risk, along with two nurses he infected there. Nov. 7 is when the wait period will end for all of those being monitored. Health officials also say they were unaware that federal officials had allowed one of the nurses to fly the day before she was diagnosed with the deadly virus.
Four Children Monitored for Ebola Return to School
DALLAS (AP) – Dallas school officials say four of the five students in their district who were being monitored for Ebola have returned to school after being cleared by health authorities. The Dallas Independent School District said the four students returned to school Monday, one day earlier than expected. The students had completed their 21-day monitoring period as of midnight Sunday but officials didn’t expect their return until Tuesday. Superintendent Mike Miles said in a statement that “they were obviously eager to return back to the school environment and decided on their own to attend.” Three other students who had been monitored for the virus and who attended schools in the Richardson school district will now attend an elementary school in the Dallas district. They are scheduled to begin attending the school Tuesday.
Indiana Suspect Convicted of Assault in 2009
AUSTIN (AP) – The suspect in a series of killings in Indiana has a criminal history in Texas, including a sexual assault conviction in 2009. According to court documents, Darren Vann was sentenced to five years in prison for an attack on a woman at an Austin apartment in 2007. The victim told police he raped her and attempted to strangle her before eventually letting her go in a 2007 attack. Vann was initially charged with a first-degree felony, which carried a sentence of five to 99 years in prison. He was allowed to plead guilty to a second-degree felony with a range of two to 20 years. Vann was sentenced to five years and given credit for just over a year he spent in jail awaiting trial.
Texas Stabbing Suspect Arrested in Home Invasion
HOUSTON (AP) – Authorities say a man who posted bond after being charged in a stabbing death was one of four people arrested in a Houston-area home invasion last week. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office announced Monday 26-year-old Marcelino Osuna is charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon. Police say they found him and three others inside of a home after a neighbor saw armed suspects force their way in. No one was injured during the home invasion. Deputies say the suspects held two women and several children at gunpoint. Osuna is in a Harris County jail with no bond. The sheriff’s office says he posted bond in January after being arrested in the stabbing death of a man. An attorney for Osuna wasn’t listed in online court and county sheriff’s office records.
Tomball Man Gets 30-Year Sentence for Child Porn
HOUSTON (AP) – A U.S. attorney says a 62-year-old Tomball man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison after being convicted of producing and distributing child pornography. A U.S. district judge ordered the sentence Monday for Raul Roy Marquez, who pleaded guilty to the two charges in June. He’ll also be on supervised release once he leaves prison and must register as a sex offender. Officials say that during the investigation, they found Marquez had downloaded and spread a video on his work computer. They say he also had the material on his personal computer and on discs. Prosecutors say that about 1,000 videos and 34,400 images of child pornography were found in Marquez’s possession.
Texas Teen Accidentally Shot, Killed by Brother
CORPUS CHRISTI (AP) – Police in South Texas say a man accidentally shot and killed his 16-year-old brother when the man removed a handgun from a holster and it discharged. Corpus Christi police said in a statement that the brothers had gathered Sunday evening to watch a television show when the older brother, who’s 24, removed the gun from the holster. Investigators say a single shot accidentally discharged and struck the teen in the chest. The teen was transported to a hospital where he died. Authorities have not released the names of the brothers. Senior Officer Marc Harrod told the Corpus Christi Caller-Times that the brothers’ mother was with them and witnessed the shooting. No charges have been filed in the matter.