LONGVIEW — A former Kilgore coach and teacher has been indicted for an improper relationship with a student. Brian Eugene Bird, 34, of Gladewater, was arrested last November. The Gregg County grand jury has now indicted him on charges of improper relationship between educator and student, indecency with a child and sexual performance by a child. Besides being the boys and girls golf coach and assistant boys basketball coach at Kilgore High School was also a geography teacher. Bird is currently free on bond.
MARSHALL – Two freshman football players at East Texas Baptist University in Marshall have drowned. They are identified as Darrian “D.J.” McClintock, 20, of Spring, Texas and Norvontre “Trey” Harrison, 19, of Shreveport, Louisiana. The drowning occurred around 3:00 Thursday afternoon in a popular swimming area known locally as the “clay pits.” School President Blair Blackburn said at a news conference witnesses say one of the students was having trouble swimming and the other student went to their aid. But both drowned. Their bodies were recovered around 5:30 Thursday afternoon. … Read More
LONGVIEW — A Longview woman is free on bond after her arrest following a hit and run accident. Free on a $10,500 bond is Wendy Lee Edney, 40. She was arrested following the Wednesday afternoon accident at the intersection of North Eastman Road and Hawkins Parkway. The Longview News Journal reports the other driver involved in the wreck is said to have followed Edney to her Tryon Road home where authorities arrested her. Police say, not only did the woman have two daughters ages 7 and 11 in her car at the time of the wreck, her blood-alcohol level was more than three times the legal limit.
TYLER — Tyler’s East Texas Medical Center will be an in-network provider for all UnitedHealthcare plans starting May 1st. The president/CEO of ETMC Regional Healthcare System, Elmer Ellis, said they are “very pleased that their plan members can now choose ETMC Tyler for their healthcare needs.” The insurer and hospital system finalized this week new provider agreements.
The Jacksonville police chief, who came under fire for what residents are calling offensive Facebook posts, has resigned. A news release from the city of Jacksonville, released shortly after noon on Thursday, said Chief Reece Daniel’s resignation is effective immediately. Until a replacement is hired, assistant police chief Captain Daniel Franklin will serve as interim police chief. Daniel came under fire for messages he posted on Facebook, calling out politicians and residents. The city attorney’s office had even been investigating to see whether any of the activity occurred on the city’s time.… Read More
LONGVIEW — Emergency agencies in Longview are looking for a missing teenager. She is 15 year old Tyler Hinton. According to the police department’s Face Book page, she was last seen in Longview on January 18th. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children says she may have traveled to Dallas. She is a black female with brown eyes and black hair. She is 5’5″ tall and weighs around 120 pounds. You are encouraged to contact area law enforcement agencies if you know where she can be found.
LONGVIEW — Thee Longview men, already in trouble with the law, now have more legal problems. The men have been named in federal indictments for a variety of crimes. Jimmy Lee Mays,aka “Poochie,” 23, is charged charged with felon in possession of a firearm. Trevorris Rashomique Woodard, aka “B-1”, 28, is accused of drug crimes and felon in possession of a firearm. And Charles McNeary, 19, faces drug and firearm charges. And federal authorities didn’t have trouble locating them. The three were already in the Gregg County Jail.
TYLER — Tyler Junior College has announced the recipients of the college’s annual Rotary Young Citizens and Watson W. Wise Incentive awards. Recipients are chosen by a vote of TJC faculty and staff. The Rotary Young Citizens Award goes to Arlene Campos and Ben Jordan. The Watson W. Wise Incentive Award goes to Sabrah Shipman.… Read More
TYLER — The Tyler Junior College speech and debate team has returned victorious, and national champions, from the Phi Rho Pi community college national competition in Costa Mesa, California. They took eight students to this tournament, which had 69 community colleges from across the country in attendance. All of the TJC students came back winners. With 10 events advancing, they had a near-TJC record of the number of events that went to the semifinals. … Read More
TYLER – TYLER – Here’s a look at work planned in the district during the Weeks of April 18. These schedules are subject to change due to weather conditions, equipment failure or other unforeseen issues.
Make plans to start using alternate routes if Spur 164 in Tyler is part of your normal commute. On Monday, the contractor will close Spur 164 just south of the railroad tracks to replace the damaged box culvert. The roadway will remain closed to through traffic for about three months.… Read More
WHITEWRIGHT (AP) — A newspaper analysis has found that while some safety steps have been taken across the Texas following the deadly 2013 explosion at a plant in West, tons of the same kind of fertilizer that exploded there can still be found near schools and homes in some towns. The Dallas Morning News reports their investigation found that while many of the stores that used to stock a lot of ammonium nitrate have stopped selling it and others have beefed up safeguards, many recommendations by safety investigators have gone unheeded.
AUSTIN (AP) — Texas Governor Greg Abbott has chosen mostly white men and women to fill hundreds of openings on oversight boards and other state government appointments since taking office last year. An analysis of donor records by the San Antonio Express-News on Sunday also found that roughly 1 in 4 of his appointees are campaign contributors who have given the Republican more than $8.6 million combined since 2000.
HOUSTON (AP) — An official says a man has been charged after a 15-year-old girl participating in a water gun fight during a Houston-area family gathering was injured when a real firearm was discharged. Lt. Charles Hoover of the Harris County Constable’s Office Precinct 4 said that the girl suffered injuries that weren’t life-threatening in the Saturday shooting. He says she was shot in the shoulder. The man has been arrested and charged with deadly conduct in the incident.
GRAND PRAIRIE (AP) — Police say a 22-year-old man has been charged after one man was found shot to death and another wounded inside a vehicle in the Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie. Police say when officers arrived, the suspect was located and taken into custody without incident. Manuel Fino remained in the Grand Prairie Detention Center on Sunday on $750,000 bond. He’s been charged with murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
HOUSTON (AP) — Houston police say an officer has shot a suspect who started running toward police with his gun pointed at them. Police spokesman Victor Senties says the suspect was taken to a hospital in an unknown condition Sunday. Senties says police responding to a disturbance at a home found a man with a pistol in the street. Senties says the man had raised his gun at responding officers before taking off in a sprint toward them. Senties says Officer Rene Mesa shot the suspect.
HOUSTON (AP) — Newly released records show that a Houston police officer was considered “legally intoxicated” by his department when he fatally shot one man and injured another outside a bar in 2011. The Houston Chronicle reported Sunday that a grand jury never heard that evidence before clearing Officer Jose Coronado Jr. of any charges. That’s because courts have ruled that internal police investigations cannot be used against officers in criminal cases. No Houston officer has been charged in more than 150 police shootings that resulted in injuries or deaths since 2010.
DALLAS (AP) — Several recommendations issued by a panel investigating the small-town Texas jail where Sandra Bland died could be difficult to implement, including a call to separate sheriff and jail operations, which may run afoul of state law. Waller County also faces financial hurdles to implementing other panel recommendations, such as hiring medically trained experts to evaluate the mental health of inmates. County officials have faced criticism for not properly monitoring Bland in jail after she acknowledged that she previously had tried to kill herself.
CHEYENNE, WYO. (AP) — Republican candidate Ted Cruz is promising to roll back what he calls President Barack Obama’s ‘war on coal’ if he’s elected president. The Texas senator has addressed the Republican State Convention in Casper on Saturday. Wyoming has seen coal industry layoffs in recent months. Cruz drew applause promising to protect gun rights and turn federal lands in the West to the states.
BROWNSVILLE (AP) — Brownsville police have arrested a 37-year-old man and charged him with a double slaying in the Rio Grande Valley city more than two decades ago. Police Chief Orlando Rodriguez says Felix Rey Abundez was arrested Thursday by officers assisted by a federal marshal’s task force. Abundez is charged with capital murder for the Nov. 22, 1995, fatal shootings of Dean Martinez, 25, and Adan Montes, 19, outside Martinez’s Brownsville home. Abundez is being held on $3 million bond.
MEMPHIS, TENN. (AP) — A FedEx Express hub worker fell asleep in the loading area of the plane and ended up on an early-morning flight to Texas. The Commercial Appeal reports the employee, who wasn’t identified, reportedly woke up in mid-flight, knocked on the cabin door and communicated with pilots via telephone. The pilots didn’t open the cabin door, but directed the employee to sit in an extra seat in the cargo hold for landing, said Kelly Campbell, director of Preston Smith International Airport in Lubbock, Texas.On the ground in Lubbock, Campbell says the man was questioned by airport police and other law enforcement officials, but he wasn’t arrested.
GUN BARREL CITY (AP) — A customer eating alone at a Texas restaurant left a big surprise behind for an 18-year-old waitress, a $1,000 tip. Alesha Palmer says she was so stunned by the gift she began crying in the middle of Vetoni’s Italian Restaurant in Gun Barrel City. She was serving a couple she knew last weekend and they asked about her college plans. She says she told them her parents would be helping her pay for it. Another customer who was seated nearby got up to leave and approached the restaurant owner. She says after he left, she asked if everything was all right and her boss showed her the receipt with the huge tip from the man, who asked to remain anonymous.
AUSTIN — Texas Governor Greg Abbott has announced that the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) has been elevated to Level 3 activation as heavy rain and potential flooding is forecasted to impact parts of the state .State resources are available for rapid deployment as needed to assist local officials during this significant weather event. Texans are also encouraged to prepare for severe weather in their area. Current forecasts indicate the possibility of large hail, tornadoes and flooding rainfall. In preparation for these storms, the SOC in coordination with the Texas Emergency Management Council will continue to monitor weather conditions and coordinate with the National Weather Service.
BELTON (AP) — A man has been arrested in Waco on charges of injury to a child as Bell County authorities continue to investigate the December death of a 9-month-old boy. A justice of the peace recommended holding John David Clark on $650,000 bond. Clark was identified as the boyfriend of the mother of Weston Lyle Marthers, of Little River-Academy. Clark brought the infant to a Temple hospital November 30. The child died days later and Sheriff Eddy Lange said an autopsy determined the death a homicide caused by blunt head trauma.
PRAIRIE VIEW (AP) — Signs are up officially renaming the street leading to Prairie View A&M University after Sandra Bland, the university graduate whose death in the Waller County jail last summer added to the national debate about treatment of minorities by law enforcement. The Houston Chronicle reports University Drive signs were replaced with Sandra Bland Parkway signs in ceremonies Friday. The 28-year-old Bland, from near Chicago, was pulled over last July by a state trooper for making in improper lane change. When the traffic stop became contentious, she was arrested and jailed. She died three days later. Her death has been ruled a suicide. The trooper who arrested her has been fired and is charged with misdemeanor perjury related to her case.
EL PASO (AP) — Five Fort Bliss soldiers have been arrested on burglary charges after they were spotted pulling door handles of parked cars in an El Paso neighborhood after midnight. The five, two 18-year-old and two 19-year-old privates and a 21-year-old specialist, were jailed and held on $10,000 bond each. Fort Bliss officials confirmed to the El Paso Times they were soldiers at the Army post.
TYLER – A missing Smith County Woman has been found. Friday, the Smith County Sheriff’s Department has put out a missing person’s alert for Courtney Denise Dollgener. The 27 year old woman was last seen on Thursday evening around 8:00 near Tyler State Park on Farm Road 14. Shortly after 7:30 Saturday morning, the sheriff’s office received a call from an employee at State Park Grocery on Farm Road 14. They said Dollgener was standing outside the store. Deputies say Dollgener, who appeared alert and responsive, said she was tired, hungry and thirsty after walking through the woods all night. After being checked out by EMS, she was turned over to her mother.
HOUSTON (AP) — Authorities say human remains found in a Houston pasture are those of a 17-year-old girl who disappeared in 1997. Investigators said Friday that the remains of Jessica Cain were identified through DNA analysis. A convicted kidnapper who might be linked to other violent crimes pointed investigators to the location of the remains.
HOUSTON (AP) — A Mexican national on Texas death row for the rape-slaying of his 16-year-old cousin in the Rio Grande Valley nearly two decades ago has lost a federal court appeal, moving him a step closer to execution. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected arguments from 46-year-old Ruben Ramirez Cardenas that authorities in Hidalgo County failed to notify him of his international treaty rights that he could contact Mexican consulate officials after he was arrested for the 1997 killing.
DALLAS (AP) — A man accused of posing as his slain neighbor to sell the dead man’s Dallas home has been indicted on a murder charge. The Dallas Morning News reports that a grand jury indicted 43-year-old Christopher Brian Colbert Friday. Colbert was arrested in Los Angeles in March. Police say Colbert assumed the identity of Ronald Shumway, 57, and sold his home. Court records say Colbert either lived with Shumway or next to him and had “access” to Shumway’s property.
AUSTIN (AP) — Texas Department of Criminal Justice Executive Director Brad Livingston says he’s retiring this summer after guiding the state’s prison system for nearly a dozen years, making him one of the longest-tenured directors in the agency’s history. Livingston made the announcement Friday at a Board of Criminal Justice meeting in Austin.