DALLAS (AP) — New Orleans Pelicans guard Bryce Dejean-Jones was fatally shot after breaking down the door to a Dallas apartment, authorities said Saturday. A man living at the apartment was sleeping when he heard his front door kicked open, Dallas Police Senior Cpl. DeMarquis Black said in a statement. When Dejean-Jones began kicking at the bedroom door, the man retrieved a handgun and fired. Officers who responded found Dejean-Jones collapsed in an outdoor passageway, and he later died at a hospital. He was 23. It is legal in Texas for someone to use deadly force in order to protect themselves from intruders.
OXON HILL, MD. (AP/Staff) – Nihar Janga of Austin looked like the strongest speller at the Scripps National Spelling Bee, and perhaps the best ever. And he’s only 11 years old. But he stumbled twice, at just the wrong time – or maybe the right time. He still ended up winning, but sharing the title with 13-year-old Jariam Hathwar. Twice, Jairam missed a word, giving Nihar a chance to seal the title. Both times, Nihar followed up with his own flub. After each nailed his final two words, they were declared co-champions. It was the third year in a row that the bee ended in a tie. Nihar is the youngest champion on record. Jairam is the younger brother of the 2014 co-champion. The tie was unexpected after bee officials changed the rules to make it harder.
AUSTIN (AP) — Several state agencies are sidestepping Texas law by keeping employees on the payroll months after they’ve left their jobs as part of deals that in many cases are designed to keep former employees quiet. At least seven former workers at the Teacher Retirement System were given as much as six months of paid “emergency leave” in exchange for signing documents promising not to discuss the deals or sue the agency. Records obtained by The Dallas Morning News show the attorney general’s office and Health and Human Services Commission are among other state agencies using this once obscure benefit to settle employment disputes.
A two vehicle accident on Interstate Highway 20, 7 miles west of Lindale has killed two persons. It happened around 1:30 Saturday morning. Killed were Andrew Steven Caban and Rhonda Richardson, both of Wills Point. Their west bound van ran into the rear of a Peterbilt truck-tractor towing a semi-trailer. The driver and passenger in the van were pronounced dead at the scene. The truck’s driver and passenger were not hurt.
In Rusk County, two persons were killed in a two vehicle accident on U.S. Highway 259. It was found around 4:00 Saturday morning. The crash involved a truck-tractor semi-trailer and a pickup truck. The roadway was shut down during the investigation and was reopened around 5:30. The victim’s names have not been released.
BRENHAM (AP) — Officials in Texas are bracing for the possibility of more rain over the long Memorial Day weekend after flooding there killed two persons and left four others missing. The forecasts through the holiday weekend called for scattered or isolated thunderstorms in Central and Southeast Texas. But officials say they will be monitoring local rivers and waterways, which could rise out of their banks in the coming days due to the heavy rains.… Read More
AUSTIN (AP) — Officials in Bryan say the number of homes damaged by a tornado that struck their Central Texas city is 153, including five that were destroyed and 53 that sustained major damage. Updated figures were released Friday evening. Officials had initially said that 138 homes had been damaged. The National Weather Service said Friday that an EF-1 tornado struck Bryan, located about 100 miles northwest of Houston, a day earlier.
FORT WORTH (AP) — The ex-owner of an abandoned North Texas mortuary where bodies were found unattended in 2014 has pleaded guilty to nine misdemeanor counts of abuse of a corpse. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports Dondre Johnson pleaded guilty Friday in Tarrant County. In September, Johnson had been sentenced to two years in state jail after a theft conviction for taking money from families for cremation and burial services and failing to deliver those services. His lawyer, Alexander Kim, says Johnson’s guilty pleas will add jail sentences of up to a year, but they will be served concurrently with the theft sentence.
LONGVIEW – A Longview teacher has been removed from the classroom pending an investigation. The school district took the action following the arrest of John Derr. The middle school teacher was arrested on Tuesday for harboring a runaway. The district confirmed the action and the fact that the student is not enrolled with LISD. Sarah LeBus, communications officer for the Longview School District said, “In order to protect the integrity of the investigation, as well as the privacy of the child and family, we can make no further comment at this time.”
MT SELMAN – A man with ties to Bullard and Troup, and wanted by Cherokee County authroities for kidnapping, has been arrested. Trenton Salmon, 23, was arrested shortly before 3:45 Friday afternoon at a home in Reklaw. Captain John Raffield with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department says Salmon has been taken to the Cherokee County Jail. He is being charged with aggravated kidnapping and interference with emergency request for assistance. … Read More
TYLER – The conviction of a Henderson County grandmother in the death of her grandchild has been upheld by an appeals court. The 12th Court of Appeals in Tyler has affirmed the conviction of 55 year old Glynda Denise Morrow of Chandler. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison last year after being found guilty of intoxication manslaughter for causing a wreck that killed her 5 year old granddaughter. The wreck occurred in July, 2014 on Lake Placid Road in Smith County when her SUV ran off the road and hit a tree. State Troopers reported Morrow’s blood alcohol content was over the state’s legal limit.
TYLER – With the help of a state grant, extra police patrols will be out in Tyler over the Memorial Day holiday weekend. The additional patrols are targeting DWI drivers and seat belt violations. Police spokesman Don Martin says a suspected drunk driver will be asked to submit to a breat test. If they refuse, officers will obtain a search warrant signed by a judge on call to have blood drawn by a nurse on staff at the Smith County Jail.… Read More
LUFKIN – A Donald Trump campaign sign has led to the arrest of a Lufkin man on charges of public intoxication. It started when Joshua Monroy, 21, went home with a man he met at a party. When Monroy saw the Donald Trump sign in his yard, he became combative and tried to fight. Monroy was told to leave. He was later found asleep in the man’s vehicle. Police woke him up, charged him with public intoxication and took him to the Angelina County Jail.
QUITMAN – Four persons have now been arrested in connection with a Wood County home invasion that injured a teenager. The 16 year old was stabbed Tuesday as he was fighting with one of the men who broke into his home near Quitman. He was not seriously injured. Taken into custody early Friday in the case were 18 year old Quancell Richie of Fruitvale (pictured) and 18 year old Kemond Montral Harris of Mineola. Previously arrested were Lawrence “Flow” Herron of Mineola and a Hispanic male juvenile. Most of the items stolen from the home have been recovered.
TYLER — For the second time this month, a Tyler radio personality has been arrested on drug charges. Patrick Aaron Aguirre, 39, known as “The Brain” on the station “The Breeze,” was arrested at his home shortly before 11:15 Thursday morning. Tyler Police say the latest arrest follows a six-month long investigation. Aguirre has been charged with engaging in organized criminal activity and manufacture and delivery of a controlled substance. He was booked into the Smith County Jail with bonds totaling $850,000. Aguirre was previously arrested at his Becky Drive home on May 4th and charged with possession of marijuana. On top of everything else, Aguirre has been fired by Waller Media.… Read More
JACKSONVILLE — A two vehicle accident in Cherokee County has killed an Anderson County woman. The crash occurred shortly before 1:30 Thursday afternoon on Highway 135 about a mile east of Jacksonville. Dead at the scene was Kayla Tucker, 18, of Palestine. The Department of Public Safety reports Tucker lost control of her car on the wet highway. Her car spun into the opposite lane of traffic and collided with a SUV driven by Russell Gideon, 48, of Frankston. He was not injured.
PALESTINE – A boil water notice has been issued for the city of Palestine. It was issued because of a break in a 10″ main line in the 1600 block of Court Drive. Residents who use city water west of Loop 256 and U.S. Highway 79, West Oak Street, and areas north and south of U.S. 79 will be directly affected. The boil order will be lifted when water reaches testing standards set by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. … Read More
TYLER — The Faulkner Park entrance at Cumberland Road was suppose to reopen this week. But, because of weather delays, it will remain closed for two more weeks, until June 8th. The entrance was closed because of the ongoing construction for the Cumberland Road extension. Construction includes removal of the median at this entrance, reconfiguration and striping of the intersection, widening of Cumberland Road, asphalt paving and concrete paving. The parking lot entrance will remain open for the Faulkner Park ball fields. Until the Cumberland Road entrance is reopened, traffic will need to detour to exit and enter at the Faulkner Park southern entrance at South Broadway.
MARSHALL – A Houston County man is going to prison for asbestos removal violations. Rodney K. Beshears, 60, of Kennard pleaded guilty in February to violating asbestos work practice standards of the Clean Air Act. In federal court in Marshall Thursday, he was sentenced to 12 months and one day in federal prison. Beshears and his employees began excavating and removing a pipeline between Diana and Ore City in October 2011. He admitted to not following asbestos removal practices while removing the pipeline.
QUITMAN – Two persons are in custody and two are being sought in a Wood County home invasion that injured a teenager. The 16 year old boy was alone when his home was broken into and he was stabbed fighting with one of the suspects. He was treated and released from the hospital. The suspects took two televisions, a computer and a rifle and fled. Following up leads, authorities arrested Lawrence “Flow” Herron of Mineola. He has been charged with felon in possession of a firearm and aggravated robbery and organized criminal activity. A Hispanic male juvenile was later arrested in the Mineola area. KETK reports Investigators have identified two additional suspects and warrants have been issued for their arrests.
TYLER — Three local students are among the first recipients of the Trooper Javier Arana Jr. Memorial Scholarship. They gathered at the the Texas Department of Public Safety Tyler Regional Office to receive the award. The scholarship was created in honor of Arana, who was killed in the line of duty in 2012. The first local recipients are James Jackson of Troup High School, Jenna Stanely of Canton High School and Jaylon Seastrunk of Longview High School. Jackson plans to use the scholarship funds towards a degree in law and will be attending UT-Tyler, Stanely plans to study Psychology at Texas State University and Seastrunk will be attending UT-Arlington studying Pre-Med.… Read More
AUSTIN — The State Board of Education has recognized 15 Texas public school students as Student Heroes for their outstanding volunteer efforts at their schools and communities. One of the students is from Smith County. He is Drvyer Cowart, a second grader in Lindale. He had one wish for his birthday, to help area foster children. He asked his family and friends to raise money for Together We Rise, a non-profit that works with foster children in Smith County. The $2,000 that was raised was used to purchase duffle bags that he and his guests decorated. They were then filled with a blanket, stuffed animal, toiletries and other items.
ATHENS — Area law enforcement agencies have joined together to conduct a “Knock and Talk” sex offender compliance check in Henderson county. The action has resulted in some arrests. The goal of the operation was to verify the offender is complying with the law. It requires adult and juvenile sex offenders to register with the local law enforcement agency in the city or county where they reside. Nearly 200 compliance checks were conducted earlier this week. Fourteen sex offenders were found to be out of compliance, four were arrested for probation or parole violations. Those who were arrested were booked into the Henderson County Jail.
CUSHING — In an argument over a woman, one person is injured and one is in custody in a drive by shooting in Nacogdoches County. It happened around 1:30 Wednesday morning on County Road 971, northwest of Cushing. After diving by the victim’s home several times, and becoming involved in a traffic accident with the home owner, the suspect is said to have driven by an and fired several shots. The homeowner wasn’t there, but a man in the backyard was wounded. He’s being treated at Nacogdoches Medical Center. Sheriff Jason Bridges says the suspect, William Hyde, 26, of Nacogdoches, was arrested at his Cushing area home. A shotgun, thought to have been used in the attack, was found hidden in nearby woods. Hyde was booked into the Nacogdoches County Jail on a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
LONGVIEW – The public is being asked to help identify a man responsible for thefts around East Texas. He is wanted for questioning in connection with thefts at Wal-Mart stores in Longview, Kilgore and Marshall. The thefts were reported between May 8th and 17th. In each case, the suspect entered the store in the morning, filled a shopping cart with electronics, and then leaves through an emergency exit. He has been seen driving a red pickup, a silver or gold Firebird and a gold Saturn. If you know this man, you are asked to contact authorities.
WINNSBORO — A grand jury has returned a no bill in last year’s death of a Wood County toddler. Sixteen-month-old Madison Cannon was found unresponsive in a home on McKinney Street in Winsboro in April of last year. She was first treated at a local hospital, and then flown to Children’s Medical Center in Dallas, where she later died. An autopsy showed the little girl died from blunt force head trauma and the death was ruled a homicide. At the time of the death, police said there were persons of interest in the case, but no one was ever arrested. Now, a grand jury has issued a no bill in the case. According to a statement from the Winnsboro Police department, “this is a a sad and disappointing day for us.”
LONGVIEW- Scammers are trying to con Texans out of money. And they are using the Gregg County Sheriff’s name in the scam. Someone is calling locally and around the state threatening threatening arrest unless paid with a pre-paid debit card. They are even using the name of actual Warrants Lieutenant Bill Drennan. Gregg County Sheriff’s Office PIO Josh Tubb told the Longview News Journal they probably got his name off the department’s web site. The calls are said to have come from the telephone number 903-371-1035. Tubb’s advice is to disregard the calls and report it to the sheriff’s office.
EAST TEXAS (AP) – A boost from former presidential candidate Ted Cruz may have helped an East Texas Republican win the nomination for a state Senate seat. Bryan Hughes beat David Simpson on Tuesday night in a primary runoff between the two state House members. Cruz called Hughes a “conservative fighter” in recorded phone messages to voters. Cruz seldom gets involved in legislative races and has been mostly quiet since ending his White House run. But the raucous support the U.S. senator drew at the Texas Republican Convention earlier this month was a reminder of his influence with GOP voters statewide. No Democrats bothered to run in the solidly conservative senate district. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who controls the Senate, had also endorsed Hughes to replace outgoing Republican Sen. Kevin Eltife.… Read More
LONGVIEW – The northbound lane of Farm Road 2087 at the Sabine River Bridge in Gregg County will be closed today, and possibly even Thursday. This will be necessary for work in advance of building a new bridge. Motorists can expect delays during the day. A report from the Texas Department of Transportation says the southbound lane will carry two-way traffic through this work zone with flaggers providing traffic control. Work will be conducted between 7:00am and 7:00pm, so it will be to your advantage if you can take alternate routes during this time. The project to build the new Sabine River Bridge is scheduled to go to bid in August with construction starting in the fall.