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Three Nabbed on Burglary Charges

Jayleen Shaquille PattersonLONGVIEW — Three Longview teens were arrested Tuesday after they were allegedly caught burglarizing a home in the 700 block of Melinda Lane in Longview. The Longview News-Journal reports that Jayleen Shaquille Patterson (pictured), 19, Joshua D. Johnson, 17, and Ladadrian Deontae King, 17, were booked into the Gregg County Jail, each under $10,000 bond, according to their booking sheets. Police say they found the trio inside the home about 8:40 a.m. Tuesday after responding to a call about three men entering a home they did not live in, according to police reports.

Man Gets Life Sentence in Drug Case

Martin Garza JrTYLER — A man is sentenced to life in a Smith County drug case. The trial of Martin Garza Jr., 25, began Monday in the 241st District Court with jury selection; the evidence phase got underway Tuesday. Garza was charged with Possession with Intent to Deliver Cocaine enhanced by a prior conviction for Burglary of a Habitation. Testimony showed that Garza’s arrest was the result of a traffic stop initiated by Tyler Police Department K9 Officer Steve Black on February 28th, 2013. The stop developed into a drug investigation after Garza admitted to officers that he had cocaine in the car. The Tyler Police Officers ultimately arrested Garza for Possession with Intent to Deliver after they located numerous items of evidence suggesting that Garza was involved in the illegal sale of cocaine. Read the rest of this entry »

Ellis Announces Candidacy for Smith County Court at Law

Jason EllisTYLER — Local attorney Jason Ellis Thursday formally announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for Judge of the Smith County Court at Law. Ellis is a former Smith County Assistant District Attorney who now runs his own law practice. According to press materials, he decided to run for judge because he believes the County Court at Law is in bad shape and needs reform. “The court is slow and inefficient, wasting taxpayer dollars and the time of everyone involved. Smith County citizens deserve better. We must demand better.” Current County Court at Law Judge Tom Dunn is not seeking re-election. Attorneys Jim Huggler and Mike Patterson are also seeking the GOP nomination.

Rains School Worker Hit by Car, Airlifted to Hospital

thumb_DPS-carEMORY — An employee in the Rains Independent School District was airlifted to a local hospital after being hit by a car Thursday morning. According to KETK, the DPS says the elementary school aide was walking across Highway 69 to the school when she was struck as the vehicle turned into the school parking lot. There was no immediate word on the woman’s name, her condition, or other circumstances surrounding the incident.

Registered Child Sex Offender Back behind Bars

howard__jacori_dewaynehcsoMARSHALL — A Harrison County registered child sex offender is back behind bars for allegedly sexually assaulting another child. Je’Cori Dewayne Howard, of Marshall, was arrested Friday, on a warrant for aggravated sexual assault of a child. Howard was also arrested and sentenced in 2012 for sexual assault of a child under the age of 14 and was sentenced to 10 years of deferred adjudication. He was also ordered to serve 400 hours of community service and 180 days in the Harrison County Jail, and pay for his victim’s court costs, attorney fees, and counseling. Howard was additionally made to register as a sex offender for the remainder of his life. Lt. Jay Webb with the Harrison County Sheriff’s office tells KETK Howard has been booked into the Harrison County Jail and his bond has been set at $100,000.

Rose Festival Underway

thumb_roses-2TYLER — The Annual Texas Rose Festival is underway, continuing through Sunday. Rose Queen Rachel Clyde cut the ribbon on the festivities Thursday morning. Rachel says she doesn’t think people realize how much the festival does for the community. She told KTBB, “It brings so many people to Tyler, and so they have to stay in hotels obviously…It’s great for our economy and brings so much money in.” On a more personal note regarding her reign as Queen, Rachel says, “It’s really been special just to get to see kind of another side of it. I…didn’t realize all of the tradition that actually goes into everything, and I’ve just really learned so much about our community throughout the whole process. It’s been really neat.” Read the rest of this entry »

Longview Home Sales Up

house for sale2LONGVIEW — Longview home sales jump by more than 18% in September, compared with just a year ago. KETK and the Longview News-Journal report that 181 houses sold in September, compared with 153 in September of 2012. Yearly home sales also reportedly are on track to beat last year’s. Interest rates are still low, so realtors say it’s still a good time to buy and sell houses.

Authorities Identify Woman Killed by Train in Harrison County

Harrison County SO PatchHALLSVILLE — Harrison County authorities have identified the woman killed by a Union Pacific freight train around 6:30 Tuesday night. She is Hallsville High School junior Kristina Nicole Lawrence, 17, of Longview. The accident happened near Lansing Switch Road, just outside of Hallsville. Union Pacific spokeswoman Raquel Espinoza told the Longview News-Journal the wreck did not happen at a railroad crossing. “The Union Pacific train came upon a pedestrian on the tracks. It appears by looking at the video, the person was just standing there,” Webb said. Investigators say she was standing on the track with two dogs, who were also killed. The Harrison County Sheriff’s Office and a Union Pacific police officer are investigating the incident.

Police Identify Body Found on Sabine Street in Longview

thumb_police-longviewLONGVIEW — Longview police have identified a dead body found in the city. She is Maria Raquel Johnson, 41, of Longview. Her body was found in the 1000 Block of Sabine Street Shortly before 1:45 Monday afternoon. An officer was walking back to his car after completing his assignment when he noticed something that caught his attention. Police say the officer went over to investigate further and discovered the partially decomposed body, which was lying a short distance away. They are now trying to determine the cause of death. They encourage anyone with information to contact Longview Police Detectives at 903-237-1199 or Gregg County Crimestoppers at 903-236-7867.

Deputy Hurt in Accident

SCSO Vehicle 101613TYLER — A Smith County Sheriff’s Deputy has been injured in a one vehicle accident. It happened around 1:15 yesterday morning at the intersection of Loop 323 and McDonald Road. Deputy Candice Vaughan car hydroplaned on the wet road and left the Loop, striking a tree on the driver’s side. She was taken to Mother Francis Hospital where she was treated and released. The weather-related accident remains under investigation.

Former Whitehouse Football Player Off the Oklahoma Team

Trey MetoyerNORMAN OKLA. — Oklahoma wide receiver, and former Whitehouse Wildcat standout Trey Metoyer, has been charged with with two felony counts of indecent exposure and has been kicked off the team. According to, Metoyer is currently not with the Oklahoma football team as both Bob Stoops and Jay Norvell said recently Metoyer was taking care of personal issues. According to the probable cause affidavit obtained by the web site, Metoyer exposed himself to two different victims in Norman. After initially denying both allegations, Metoyer later admitted to each incident. The first count took place on August 29.

Nacogdoches County Man Accused of Beating His Wife

David BuchananNACOGDOCHES — A Nacogdoches County man has been arrested, accused of beating his wife. Charged with aggravated assault, family violence, is David Buchanan, 59. His wife, who was severely beaten and had internal injuries and several broken bones, is in the intensive care unit of a Nacogdoches hospital. He was found asleep in his home on Highway 7 East around 10:00 Tuesday morning, and was taken into custody.

Officials: Lightning May Have Caused Oil Facility Fire

TYLER (Staff/AP) – Fire officials are now looking at a lightning strike as the possible cause of a blaze that destroyed an oil storage facility Monday night near Tyler State Park. KETK reports the largest concern was the oil leaking from the tanks, and almost into Wiggins Creek. The fire was extinguished, and the leaks have been contained. Authorities say nobody was hurt. The Smith County Sheriff’s Office says after putting out the blaze early Tuesday, fire crews turned the site over to the owner for cleanup. Officials with Vess Oil Corporation did not immediately return messages about the incident.

Report: Pine Tree Coach Expected to Resign

fitzLONGVIEW — After Pine Tree school trustees took no action at Monday night’s regularly scheduled meeting, a “special meeting” of board will be held October 18, where Athletic Director and head football coach Derek Fitzhenry, is expected to resign. That’s according to KETK, which reports the meeting will begin at 3:00 p.m. in the PTISD Central Office Boardroom. Board members and Superintendent Dr. T.J. Farler are expected to discuss with Fitzhenry what exact formal action will be taken. According to the board agenda, the board will retreat into a closed session for consultation with an attorney regarding a settlement agreement and the resignation of the athletic director. An open session will begin immediately after the closed session ends. During that session, there will be a discussion and possible action on the resignation and settlement agreement of Fitzhenry. Read the rest of this entry »

Former Gilmer Pastor Found Guilty of Multiple Child Sex Charges

hugoGILMER — A former Gilmer pastor found guilty of multiple child sex charges involving his own daughter will be spending a long time in prison. Hugo Fluellen, 54, was sentenced yesterday to six consecutive life sentences. He will not be eligible for parole for 180 years. Read the rest of this entry »

Officials Determine Cause of Restaurant Fire

otbfireTYLER — The Tyler Fire Department says a faulty relay switch that operated the exhaust fan over the grill was responsible for a fire at On the Border Restaurant, 4301 South Broadway. Because the exhaust fan did not operate, excessive heat was able to build up inside the duct work causing the fire. The fire was contained inside duct work and firefighters were able to extinguish the fire before any structural damage occurred. Read the rest of this entry »

Witnesses: Murder of Hallsville Teen Unprovoked

hallsvilleshooterLONGVIEW — The October 5 shooting that took the life of a 17-year-old Hallsville girl was unprovoked, witnesses tell Kilgore police. That report comes from the Longview News-Journal. According to a search warrant filed in Gregg County 124th District Court and made available Monday, witnesses said Coby Ray Hudgins, 22, leveled a gun and shot Kayla Williams for no apparent reason at his home in the 3000 block of Mustang Drive in Kilgore. “The witnesses stated there had been no threats, no violence or arguments amongst any of the individuals in the house before the shooting,” the warrant said. Read the rest of this entry »

Lex Frieden Employment Award Goes to East Texas Firm

StencorAUSTIN – An East Texas company has received a statewide employment award. The Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities has announced the winners of the 2013 Lex Frieden Employment Awards, which recognize employers who go above and beyond the legal requirements in hiring, training and maintaining positive working relationships with employees with disabilities. The Small Employer of the Year honor goes to Stencor Company of Jacksonville. The winners will be honored at a luncheon on Friday at the Waco Convention Center. The event is hosted by the Waco Mayor’s Committee for People with Disabilities, and is open to the public by reservation. Nominations for the awards were submitted by individuals and organizations from communities throughout the state, and winners were selected by a panel of judges from the public and private sectors familiar with disability issues.

TeleNICU Links Children’s Medical Center with Trinity Mother Frances

thumb_MotherFrances-sign-2TYLER — Trinity Mother Frances Hospitals and Clinics in Tyler has become the first hospital system to link its neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) with expert UT Southwestern neonatologists staffing the innovative Children’s Medical Center TeleNICU program, according to a joint news release from the two hospitals. The new telemedicine program enables physicians to collaborate on diagnosis and care for the tiniest, most seriously-ill babies, and it’s already helping to save precious lives, according to the release. It was announced last month that Children’s Medical Center TeleNICU is the state’s first dedicated neonatal telemedicine program. Officials say it utilizes specialized equipment and broadband transmission to allow two-way, real-time interactive communication between the highly specialized UT Southwestern neonatologists on staff at Children’s and distant-site hospital practitioners. Read the rest of this entry »

Couple Arrested in Area Burglaries

Michael Robert WardEAST TEXAS – The Tyler Police Department has confirmed that both suspects, Michael Robert Ward (pictured) and Tracy Lynn Mallewick, are now in custody in a series of burglaries. Ward, 35, was arrested Monday in Van Zandt County; Mallewick, 42, was arrested in Dallas County. The two were apprehended as East Texas police agencies continued to investigate numerous reports of burglary of coin-operated machines in hotels. Several warrants were issued for the suspects’ arrest. Tyler police believe they struck again Sunday night at the Holiday Inn Express on West Gentry. The last known location where the suspects were residing was in the Canton area.

Cause of Inmate’s Death Released

duffie__debraGREGG COUNTY — Gregg County Sheriff Maxey Cerliano released additional information regarding the investigation into the death of a female jail inmate. Debra Ingram Duffie, 52, died August 19. Justice of the Peace, B.H. Jameson, ordered an autopsy and according to the report, Duffie’s cause of death was listed as hypertensive and ischemic heart disease. Officials said no foul play was found to contribute to Duffie’s death. The investigation is ongoing.

Longview Man Charged in Road Rage Incident

Jason Brian RawlsLONGVIEW — A Longview man has been arrested after being accused of striking the mother of his children. The Longview News-Journal identifies him as Jason Brian Rawls, 32. The incident is said to have occurred around 11:30 Sunday morning as he was driving home from church. He was booked into the Gregg County jail. His bond was set at $5,000. Gregg County judicial records show Rawls has been convicted three times for assault causing bodily injury to a family member.

Man Accused of Stealing from Goodwill

Lance CragerLUFKIN — A Lufkin man has been arrested after an officer said he saw him steal a bed frame and a World Atlas from a Goodwill Donation Center. Lance Crager, 54, was arrested around 2:45 Monday morning 2200 block of South First Street. KETK reports a search of his car turned up drug pipe. Crager was charged with theft and possession of drug paraphernalia.

One Injured in Longview Shooting Identified

duranLONGVIEW — Police are investigating a reported shooting in Longview. It happened just before 9:30 Saturday night in the area of Mobberly Avenue and Birdsong Street. One person, identified as Ricardo Duran Rivera, 29, was taken to Good Shepherd Medical Center. His condition was not believed to be life threatening. Authorities said they do know of a suspect but so far, no arrests have been made. Officials are asking anyone with information contact to Longview Police Department at 903-237-1199 or Gregg County CrimeStoppers at 903-236-7867.

Two Youngsters Found in Pool, One Dies

ANGELINA COUNTY — One of two youngsters found floating in a swimming pool in Angelina County has died. 20-month-old Amarie Rodriguez died late Sunday afternoon in Houston’s Children’s Memorial Herman Hospital. Ayden Bentley, 2, is listed in fair condition in the same hospital. The youngsters were found floating in the pool around 11:00 Saturday morning in the the 2000 block of Allentown Loop. Child Protective Services along with the Angelina County Sheriff’s Department are investigating the incident.

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