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UT Tyler Among Best Universities Nationwide for Student Veterans

thumb_uttylerTYLER — The University of Texas at Tyler is one of the leading four-year public universities in the nation for student veterans, Ona Tolliver, assistant vice president for student affairs and dean of students, announced. The Military Times, an independent publication, set out to find the best schools for students veterans among two-year, four-year, and online institutions, while placing a new emphasis on academic rigor. According to a UT Tyler news release, representatives from about 600 schools responded to this year’s survey. In the 2014 results, UT Tyler ranked sixth out of all four-year, public Texas institutions, besting UT Arlington and UT Austin. Read the rest of this entry »

Scam Alert in East Texas

Better Business BureauTYLER — The Better Business Bureau Serving Central East Texas received several calls Tuesday morning from consumers who have received automated calls claiming to be from Capital One Bank. The message alerts the consumer that his or her credit card has been compromised. The call further instructs the consumer to “dial 1 for a security officer” and is likely an attempt to obtain personal and financial information, according to the BBB. In a news release, the bureau’s Mechele Mills says the BBB has confirmed that these calls are fraudulent. Mills reminds consumers to verify the legitimacy of any call by hanging up and dialing a verified phone number for the company. Capital One’s fraud line is (800) 655-2265.

Body of Reported Missing Man Found

jasper_dadJASPER — The search for a missing Jasper man has ended after authorities discovered his body. According to KETK, the body of Alfred Wright, 28, has been located north of Highway 87 near Coussans Road in the same area where he was believed to have gone missing. Read the rest of this entry »

Longview House Fire

Longview Fire DepartmentLONGVIEW — A Longview home has been damaged by fire. It was reported Monday afternoon in the 2000 block of West Street. Fire Marshal Johnny Zackary told the Longview News Journal that an overheated electric wire set insulation on fire. Damage was kept to a minimum by removing the cellulose insulation. There were no injuries.

Tyler-Area Builder Installed as State Organization President

Joe Carlyle Induction TABAUSTIN — The Texas Association of Builders recently named a Tyler-area builder as its president for 2014. Joe Carlyle, past president of the Tyler Area Builders Association, was installed as the 2014 Texas Association of Builders President by Todd Staples, Texas Commissioner of Agricluture. Carlyle took the oath at the Texas Association of Builders (TAB) Excellence in Leadership Dinner held November 21 at the Driskill Hotel in Austin. Read the rest of this entry »

Woman Jailed in Husband’s Stabbing Death

Aspioun Le Erica JonesLUFKIN — An East Texas woman is in jail after she allegedly stabbed and killed her husband. It happened at 8:30 Monday morning in the 700 block of Schuller Street at Pershing Place Apartments in Lufkin. Lufkin Police tell KETK that officers were called to a disturbance in progress and on arrival found the victim, Javoras Durham, 26, with a stab wound to the chest. Durham was pronounced dead at the scene. His wife, Aspioun Jones, 23, was in the apartment at the time of his death. She has been arrested and charged with murder. Jones is currently being held in Angelina County Jail.

East Texas Stretch of I-20 Has High Crash Rate

I20-EastTYLER — Here’s something to keep in mind if you’re traveling Interstate 20. More than half the stretch of the Interstate from Dallas County to the Louisiana border is more wreck-prone than the state average. Those findings were delivered at a Texas Transportation Commission meeting held in Tyler. KETK and the Longview News-Journal report the especially crash-prone section runs from the Marshall area to just west of the Tyler area. It covers 55% of the Dallas County-to-Louisiana stretch. There are higher crash rates reported in Smith and Gregg Counties.

Attorney: Woman in Ricin Case Could Face 18 Years

shannon-richardsonDALLAS (AP) – The attorney for a New Boston woman who will plead guilty in a high-profile ricin letters case says both sides have agreed to a prison sentence of no longer than 18 years. Officials say Shannon Guess Richardson sent ricin-laced letters to President Barack Obama, New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, and a leader of the mayor’s gun control group. Lawyer Tonda Curry also said Monday that Richardson never intended “to harm anyone at all,” but wouldn’t disclose more about her motivation. Curry says Richardson has agreed to plead guilty to a federal charge of possessing or producing a biological toxin. She said Richardson is “anxious” to admit that she ordered components to make ricin, a powdery substance that can cause respiratory failure if inhaled. Curry says Richardson also wants to turn over others involved in the plot. Richardson was arrested in June in Mt. Pleasant after the letters were discovered.

Authorities Investigate Aggravated Robbery

ez2GREGG COUNTY — Sheriff Maxey Cerliano and the Gregg County Sheriff’s Office request assistance in obtaining information about an aggravated robbery. It happened just before 6:15 Sunday evening at the EZ-Mart at Highway 349 and Pitner Street. A man with a handgun entered the store wearing a ski mask and demanded that the clerk give him an undisclosed amount of money from the cash register. At left is a photo from video surveillance at the store. The suspect is a white male, approximately 5’6” to 5’8” and medium build to thin build. The jacket worn by the suspect appears to be green and blue with a unique design on the front. Anyone with information is asked to contact Investigator David Falco at 903-236-8438 or Crime Stoppers at 903-236-STOP.

Weather Related School Delays

EAST TEXAS — Several East Texas school districts have announced delays due to the upcoming winter weather. According to KETK:

Elkhart I.S.D. has announced that school will be delayed by two hours because of weather conditions. Classes will start at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, November 26.

Slocum I.S.D. has announced that they will begin school at 10:00 a.m. due to early morning weather conditions.

Check back for an updated list as more districts announce possible delays.

East Texas Man Charged with Indecent Exposure

shannon_millerLUFKIN — An East Texas man is behind bars and charged with indecent exposure and other charges. It happened shortly before 10:30 Saturday morning in the 200 block of Moody Street. According to KETK, Shannon R. Miller, 31, was seen in public performing a lewd act on himself. Further investigation found Miller to be in possession of drug paraphernalia and he was publicly intoxicated. Miller was charged with indecent exposure, public intoxication and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is currently in Angelina Count Jail under a $2,500 bond.

Suspected Drunk Driver Crashed Into Gas Station

gas_station_wreck.1385325399LONGVIEW — A man suspected of drunken driving has been transported to Good Shepherd Medical Center after causing significant damage to a gas station. According to KETK, it happened around 8:30 Sunday morning in the 4000 block of Estes Parkway in Longview. According to a Longview DPS Trooper, Antonio Gonzalez, 26, hit a telephone pole at the Zippy J’s Exxon Mobile station. Gonzalez then reportedly struck a single gas pump and part of a fence before his vehicle came to a stop. The trooper said said no criminal charges have been filed but his blood was drawn to determine if he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Dean said Gonzalez was issued a citation for driving on a suspended license and will be referred to the Gregg County District Attorney’s Office.

3 on Willie Nelson’s Band Bus Hurt in Wreck

1382189_10151983229838453_1140947750_nSULPHUR SPRINGS (AP) — Singer Willie Nelson has suspended performances until December after three of his band members were hurt when their bus plowed into a bridge pillar in East Texas during rainy conditions. The Texas Department of Public Safety says Nelson was not aboard in the weather-related accident around 3:30 Saturday morning on Interstate 30 near Sulphur Springs. Nelson spokeswoman Elaine Schock says Paul English broke his ankle, his brother Billy English suffered a bruise hip and Tom Harkin has a cracked or bruised rib. Nelson has postponed his four remaining November tour dates: Robinsonville and Jackson, Miss.; Fayetteville, Ark.; and Lafayette, La. Trooper Sylvia Jennings says seven people were on the westbound bus, including the driver who was dealing with wet roads and high winds.

Private Investigator Hired to Find Missing Man

missingjasperHEMPHILL — Alfred Wright, a 28 year old African American male, has been missing since November 7. On the day he disappeared, he was driving along a rural section of State Highway 87 near Hemphill and began having trouble with his truck. With his truck broken down, he made a call to his wife at 6:19 p.m. and has not been heard from since. Read the rest of this entry »

Chapel Hill Advances Over Crandall

The Chapel Hill Bulldogs defeated the Crandall Pirates 38-14 in a second round Class 3A Division One playoff game on a cold, rainy Friday night at Royse City ISD Stadium. The Chapel Hill running game did the damage. The Bulldogs completed only two passes in the game and both were on two point conversions from Andrew Black to Lex Heckel. Black scored on touchdown runs of 85, 53 and 4 yards. Wesley Thompson and Ja’Braylon Franklin also ran for scores.

The Bulldogs advance to round three on Friday, November 29 at Forney’s City Bank Stadium. Chapel Hill is now 8-4 on the season. Crandall’s playoff run ends at 5-6.

Woman Injured after Car Rolled Over Her

Tyler Police PatchTYLER — Tyler Police respond to an accident involving a woman pinned under a vehicle. It happened just before Friday afternoon at the Valero gas station, 4801 Troup Highway. Authorities said Peggy Rozell, 55, Tyler, had stopped at the store and, while exiting her vehicle, it began to roll, pinning her underneath. She suffered injuries to her neck and face from the impact. The vehicle also rolled over one of her arms causing injuries. Rozell was transported to East Texas Medical Center for non-life threatening injuries.

Representative Flynn Seeking Another Term

Dan Flynn2AUSTIN — State Representative Dan Flynn of Van made it official Friday morning by filing his candidacy papers with the Republican Party of Texas. Flynn is seeking his 7th term as State Representative of House District 2, comprised of Hopkins, Hunt, and Van Zandt Counties. “After much prayer and thoughtful consideration, Susan and I are looking forward to continuing our service,” remarked Representative Flynn this morning. “The people of House District 2 have encouraged me to seek another term as their Representative and I am honored to oblige.” Read the rest of this entry »

Charge Upgraded to Murder in Texas Officer’s Death

Justin SandersTEXARKANA (AP) — A man originally charged with assault in the June traffic-related death of a Northeast Texas police officer now faces a murder count. The Texarkana Gazette reports a Bowie County grand jury Thursday indicted Justin Sanders, 21, on the upgraded charge. The case involves the death of Texarkana police Officer William Sprague. Read the rest of this entry »

One Arrested in Nacogdoches Stabbing Death

Nacogdoches PoliceNACOGDOCHES — One person has been stabbed to death in Nacogdoches. A suspect is in custody. It happened around 11:30 Thursday night in the 300 block of West Spradley Street. Derek Maiden, 42, of Nacogdoches died in a local hospital after being stabbed once in the upper part of his body. KETK says Paula Yvette Harris, 39, was arrested and charged with murder in the case. After being arrested, she reported feeling ill, and was taken to the hospital.

One Killed in Marshall Accident

Marshall Police ShieldMARSHALL — A vehicle-pedestrian accident has killed a Marshall woman. It happened around 6:45 Friday morning in the area of U.S, Highway 80 also known as Victory Drive, and Mae Drive. KETK says the victim was Rufina Carbajal-Cortez, 61. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Police report she was trying to cross the road when hit by a west bound car. The investigation into the accident continues.

Tyler Barn Fire Reported

TYLER — Firemen have extinguished a barn fire in Tyler. It was reported shortly after 1:00 Friday afternoon at 422 East Cumberland Road. A neighbor called it in, saying she could see flames coming from the barn. Tyler firemen responded with 3 engines, 1 ladder truck, a District Chief and an Investigator are on scene. Fire Marshal Paul Findley says the fire appears to have been caused by a malfunction of a propane fueled generator in the structure. Hay being stored inside the building added to the intensity of the fire. The building is a total loss. There were no injuries.

Weather Related Road Closure

SMITH COUNTY — Smith County Road and Bridge crews have closed County Road 35 between CR 492 and Spring Club Lake Road due to multiple trees and power lines being down. Oncor and tree cutting crews are working to clear the road.

Fatal Wreck in Harrison County

DPS door signMARSHALL — A one vehicle accident in Harrison County has killed a Marshall man. Dead at the scene of the crash was James Henry Wilder, 34. The accident happened around 4:30 Thursday morning on West U.S. Highway 80 about a mile east of Loop 290. The Department of Public Safety reports that Wilder’s car, which was west bound, appears to have drifted off the road and hit a culvert, flipped several times, landed on its roof and then caught fire.

Home Values Up in East Texas

home for saleEAST TEXAS — The U.S. Census Bureau has issued a new report on median home value changes from 2007 to 2012 — and most East Texas counties saw an increase. According to KETK, in Smith County alone, the median home value is given as $120,000 — an increase of $600. The survey lists Gregg County’s median home value at $119,000, a jump of $7,700.

Search Called Off for Missing Plane

TYLER — Smith County officials Thursday evening called off the search for a plane that was reported to have gone down in the county. According to KETK, the Dixie Fire Department was notified at 3:20 p.m. Thursday that someone at Tyler Pounds Regional Airport saw a plane tilting its wings, which is a sign of aviation distress. The plane was spotted south of the airport but never showed up on the radar. Multiple first responders were dispatched to County Road 1139, but the plane was not found. Officials expanded their coverage area to 9150 County Road 2120 near the Arrowhead Golf Club, close to the Woods subdivision and the University of Texas at Tyler, prior to the search being halted. Officials continued their search until after 6:00 p.m.

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