TYLER — Tyler Police said they received a 911 call that a person’s 2014 Dodge truck was stolen from Lowes on Broadway. The owner reportedly left his vehicle running while he was in the process of loading items into the back of his truck. Police said Thomas Atwell stole the vehicle and drove away at a high rate of speed. A citizen observed the vehicle being stolen and provided transportation to the victim in an attempt to follow the stolen vehicle until they lost sight of it at Old Jacksonville and Loop 323. A short time later, Tyler Police received a call of a hit and run at Houston and Glenwood involving what we believed to be the stolen vehicle and a silver Chevrolet Impala.… Read More
SMITH COUNTY — Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith announced the capture of several wanted fugitives. According to a news release, officials received a tip Thursday from Overton Police regarding the possible location of Travis Charles Wolfe, 30, (pictured) at a Walmart on Hwy 110 in Tyler. Officials followed the vehicle, occupied by a female and two males, across the street to Wataburger and positively identified the driver as Wolfe. Also in the vehicle was Nathan West, 32, also a wanted fugitive and a female, identified as McKenna Warren, 21. Following a search of the truck, deputies found methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. … Read More
TYLER — The City of Tyler Parks and Recreation Department is announcing that it will be closing Woldert pool for the season on Monday, July 25. The splash pad adjacent to the pool will remain open. Officials say the pool, which opened in the 1950s, will be closing early this year due to infrastructure issues following a third-party inspection and report. The City of Tyler is currently looking at all options for the pool’s future, according to a news release. Officials say this would include grants and other funding opportunities to improve, replace, or possibly repurpose the structure.… Read More
TYLER — RNK will be performing sanitary sewer spot repairs along North Forest Avenue between Garden Valley Road and West Erwin Street in Tyler starting today, causing lane closures. Work will continue on Monday, July 11. Drivers are asked to find alternate routes of travel, if possible, to avoid delays. The closures are due to be in effect from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days, according to information from the city.
LONGVIEW – Longview’s Belcher Center is preparing for its 10th anniversary season by announcing a variety of entertainment for 2016-2017. You’ll be able to see Chubby Checker, The Oak Ridge Boys, humorist Jeanne Robertson, illusionist Adam Trent and Celtic Woman along with productions of Goodnight Moon and The Runaway Bunny, and The Cat in the Hat. Belcher Center Director Cynthia Hellen says season ticket holders can renew starting next Monday. New season ticket packages will go on sale on Monday, July 25. Individual show tickets will go on sale Monday, August 15. You can purchase tickets online at http://www.BelcherCenter.com or by calling the Belcher Center Box Office at 903-233-3080.
AUSTIN – The state of Texas is sending out local sales tax allocations for July. These allocations are based on sales made in May by businesses that report monthly. The state is sending out $624 million to the cities, counties, transit systems and special purpose taxing districts. That figure is 2.3% more than the July figure last year. While the cities of of Dallas, San Antonio, Austin and Fort Worth saw noticeable increases in sales tax allocations, it was a different story for some area cities. Tyler’s check of over $2.9 million is over 4% below the same period last year. For the year, Tyler’s sales tax allocation is off over 5%. Longview’s check of $2.1 million is down 4% for the period and off over 61/2 percent for the year. Kilgore’s allocation for the period is down over 19% and down over 15% for the year.
SINGLETON – A Northeast Texas resident has died and another critically injured in A Grimes County accident. The wreck occurred late Tuesday night on Highway 90 near the town of Singleton. Killed was 64 year old Shirley Robertson of Marshall. The driver of her car, 36 year old Shareeta Benson of Longview, is in critical condition in a Bryan hospital. The Department of Public Safety reports their car was hit head-on by a car traveling in the wrong lane of the highway. That car’s driver was also killed in the accident.
GLADEWATER — The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has notified Gladewater that its drinking water exceeds maximum levels for contaminants caused by the chlorine treatment process. That’s according to KETK and the Longview News-Journal. The TCEQ said the maximum level allowed for haloacetic acids is 0.060 milligrams per liter, while Gladewater’s water supplies tested at 0.062 and 0.066 milligrams per liter at two sites. In response, Gladewater officials said they are reviewing the process for treating city water supplies and have started a more aggressive approach to flushing water lines.… Read More
HENDERSON — Gregg County officials have arrested the fourth suspect in a June home invasion in Rusk County. According to KETK, Donquavious Marshall, 19, has been booked into the Gregg County jail and will be extradited back to Rusk County by the end of this week. On June 21, officials responded to a report of a gunshot victim in the 6000 block of State Highway 43 East. Deputies say a group of four armed men forced their way into a victim’s house and held three men at gunpoint while assaulting and robbing them. A struggle ensued and as the victims ran from the suspects, one of the victims was shot in the leg. … Read More
PALESTINE – Representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be in Palestine this afternoon. They will be speaking with residents affected by the April 30 flooding. The representatives will walk through the areas that had the heaviest amount of damage and will go door-to-door. The purpose of the visit is to make sure residents sign up for federal disaster assistance. The representatives will be wearing clothing with the FEMA and Department of Homeland Security logo along with a federal ID badge. Palestine residents who reported damage to the city during the initial cleanup must still register with FEMA to receive assistance.… Read More
AUSTIN – The Texas Commissioner of Education has announced that 578 school systems across Texas will be awarded more than $116 million in grants. It’s part of Governor Greg Abbott’s pre-kindergarten initiative. Last year the state legislature approved, and the governor signed, a law which provides additional state support for public school districts and open-enrollment charter schools seeking to expand high-quality pre-kindergarten programs. After receiving the funding applications, the Texas Education Agency, this week, formally told school districts what they would be receiving. For the next three years, the Tyler School District will receive over $800,00 and Longview schools will get over $662,000.… Read More
LONGVIEW — Religious liberty was a hot topic for Governor Abbott this past weekend — and some see that as a conflict with the 14th Amendment. Abbott visited Mobberly Baptist Church in Longview and spelled out what some believe are among his top priorities for the upcoming legislature. Among other things, Abbott said, “We must confront this modern-day secularism that’s trying to rewrite America as one nation against God.” Any legislation along these lines could lead to a fight in the courts, according to the ACLU’s Rebecca Robertson. Robertson says, “If our state passes laws that permit government officials to discriminate based on their own personal religious views, that is almost certainly gonna be subject to an equal protection challenge.”
TYLER — A Houston man has been charged with murder and his bond set at $500,000 following a fatal shooting in Tyler Tuesday morning. That’s according to KETK. Killed in the shooting shortly after 9:00 at the Royal Inn Suites, on WNW Loop 323 between Highway 69 and Texas College Road, was Thomas Gleen Wilson, 49, of Lindale. He died after being taken East Texas Medical Center. Tyler police report the suspect, who fled the scene on foot, was Jared Wilson, 30. He was arrested by the Department of Public Safety around 11:30 Tuesday morning. He was found in a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder near Anderson County. Police say the shooting stemmed from an argument between Jared Wilson and Tom Wilson over car keys belonging to Tom Wilson’s niece, who is the girlfriend to Jared Wilson.
TYLER — The traffic signal on Old Jacksonville Highway at the intersection of Cumberland Road is now operational. The City of Tyler’s Traffic Department turned the directional signal on at 6 a.m. today. Depending on direction of travel, all drivers should be aware that right or left turns onto Cumberland Road are still not allowed until its official opening. Message boards will be posted at the intersection to remind drivers that Cumberland is not yet open.
JACKSONVILLE – A graduate from Jacksonville High School is returning as the school district’s police chief. It was announced on Tuesday that Bill Avera will take over those duties the first of next month. According to the district’s Face Book page, Avera has over 40 years experience in law enforcement, most recently as Assistant Chief of Police for Dallas ISD. Besides Jacksonville High School, Avera also graduated from Lon Morris College, Sam Houston State University, and received a Master of Science degree from Texas A&M Commerce. He comes to Jacksonville with years of supervisory and executive level positions in the public sector including 12 years in school based policing. Avera and his wife, Heather live on Lake Jacksonville and Heather is currently a teacher for JISD.
MARSHALL – The Marshall/ Harrison County DWI task force made a total of four arrests for DWI over the 4th of July holiday weekend. The task force, consisted of members of the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office and the Marshall Police Department.The task force started to work last Friday at 8:00pm and ran until July 4th at 4:00am. The Texas Department of Public Safety, who worked in conjunction with the Marshall/Harrison County DWI task force, made five arrests for DWI during this time frame. One of those was made in a joint effort with the Marshall/Harrison County DWI Task Force.
LONGVIEW – A woman watching Longview’s 4th of July fireworks show was wounded by a stray bullet. She was sitting Monday night in a church parking lot on Spur 63 to watch the display from the Maude Cobb Convention Center. Longview police say she began to feel pain and someone noticed what appeared to be a bullet wound on her neck. She was taken to Good Shepherd Medical Center for treatment. Investigators say, from the angle of the wound, it appears as if the bullet had been fired into the air and struck the woman on the way down. They say the incident was not an act of violence, but was instead an act of unsafe handling of a weapon. The Longview News Journal identified the woman as 55 year old Konie Thompson of Longview.
TYLER – Smith County commissioners have discussed their process for selecting a replacement for County Judge Joel Baker. At Tuesday’s commissioners’ court session, it was announced nine persons have come forward to express interest in the post. And of those nine, several front runners seem to have emerged. They are former County Commissioner David Stein, retired 12th Court of Appeals Justice Sam Griffith and a third person who asked that they not be named. They are still taking nominations and won’t make a decision until their next meeting on July 19th. They also said all discussions will be held in the open. Judge Baker was suspended after being indicted and arrested and charged with three counts of violation of the Texas Open Meetings Act.
TYLER — Officials have released information on charges and bond in a high-speed chase through Tyler Saturday night. According to KETK, police say 17-year old Chase Mays led officers on a chase down South Broadway. The motorcycle pursuit started just before midnight and lasted around 30 minutes. Officers were able to catch up and stop Mays. He was arrested and booked into the Smith County Jail on charges of evading arrest and reckless driving. Bonds totaled $20,000. He has since bonded out.
SMITH COUNTY – Tyler Maintenance plans to conduct edge work on FM 1253 north of FM 16. Other work includes ditch maintenance on roads around the county starting Tuesday on US 69N. Expect lane closures with flaggers providing traffic control.… Read More
LONGVIEW — An East Texas woman was booked into jail and her dog is recovering after police had to break the pet out of a hot car. KETK reports that Longview police were called Sunday to an animal report in a parking lot on North 4th Street near Hawkins Parkway. When officers made it to the scene, they were told a dog was inside a vehicle and the animal was in distress. Officers determined the dog had been left in the car by a woman for about an hour. Officers tried to locate the owner but were unable to find her. Police stated the dog began experiencing health problems related to heat inside the vehicle and Longview Animal Control was called to assist. One of the officers broke the window out of the vehicle and rescued the pet.… Read More
LAKE PALESTINE — The FAA is continuing to investigate what caused a small plane to crash into Lake Palestine Saturday night. The plane went down around 8:30 on the south side of the lake, near the Shady Brook Country Club. Cherokee County Game Warden Eric Collins tells KETK an ultra light aircraft was carrying two people when it crashed. The two people inside were rescued and are okay. Charles Shaw actually saw the plane go down. He says he saw the pilot circling the lake before stalling out and crashing. … Read More
MARSHALL — Chief Jesus “Eddie” Campa and the Marshall Police Department are seeking the community’s assistance to help solve one of Marshall’s cold cases — the June 1998 murder of Jaden Kyle Houston. On June 10, 1998 at approximately 8:18 a.m., officers responded to a Hunt St. location in reference to a black male in a blue vehicle slumped over the steering wheel and bleeding. Upon arrival, officers discovered Houston deceased in the vehicle with a gunshot wound to the back of the head. It is unknown who shot Houston, and there were no witnesses at the time of the incident.… Read More
LONGVIEW — The City of Longview holds the Fireworks and Freedom Celebration at Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Complex this July 4. Activities were scheduled throughout the day, including amusement rides, food and beverages, and a variety of entertainment including ten-time Grammy Award-winning band Asleep at the Wheel, vendors in the Exhibit Building, music acts, a hot dog eating contest, numerous children’s activities and much more, including free outdoor concerts. The festival opened at 11:00am and the day’s activities were set to be topped off with a spectacular firework display beginning at 9:30. You can go to https://www.longviewtexas.gov/2394/Fireworks-and-Freedom-Celebration to get more information.
TYLER — The City of Tyler hosts the annual 4th of July fireworks celebration at Lindsey Park, 12557 Spur 364 W. Following a 4:00 kickoff for the free celebration, the fireworks show was scheduled to begin at 9:00. The park gate, located off of Spur 364, officially opened at 2:00. According to a news release from the City of Tyler, attendees have been asked to arrive early for prime parking. Officialls highly recommend car pooling to alleviate traffic congestion, with parking on a first come, first serve basis. Due to construction and closure of Greenbriar Road, attendees are only permitted to enter the park via the Spur 364 entrance. Per City ordinances, alcohol, smoking and private fireworks are prohibited in the park. The Tyler Police Department will be patrolling and writing citations if ordinances are broken.… Read More
HENDERSON COUNTY — The 9-year-old daughter of a Seven Points Fireman was killed in a boating accident Friday night. According to KETK, the accident happened around 7:15 at Cedar Creek Reservoir. Seven Points Fire Rescue First Captain Bryan Abbott reported that Cierra Morman was on a boat when she fell overboard, striking the boat near the motor. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Abbott said the incident has been ruled an accident. He said safety precautions were in place, and no alcohol was involved. Cierra’s dad works for Seven Points Fire Rescue.… Read More
SMITH COUNTY — Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said one of three fugitives was arrested at a residence in Tyler Saturday afternoon. Officials said Michael Carl Beebe, 25, Tyler, was apprehended at the corner of Craftdale and Glenview in Tyler around 3:30 following a Crimestoppers tip. Beebe was arrested without incident by members of the US Marshall’s Fugitive Task Force, Smith County Sheriff’s Deputies and Tyler Police Department. Beebe was wanted for burglary, evading arrest with a vehicle, and fraudulent use of identifying information. Officials are still searching for Misty Graham, 38, and Travis Charles Wolfe, 31.
TYLER (AP) – A former Texas death row inmate has argued in court that he should be exonerated in the 1977 death of a 21-year-old woman because another man is responsible for the killing. Kerry Max Cook appeared Friday in a Tyler court to argue for a final ruling of actual innocence in the death of Linda Jo Edwards. A murder charge against him was dropped last month based in part on false testimony previously given in his case. Cook would be eligible for compensation if it’s determined he’s innocent in the matter. The judge who oversaw Friday’s hearing will forward a recommendation to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, which will make the determination. Cook says a man having an affair with Edwards at the time of her death was the killer.
CANTON — Child Protective Services is seeking the public’s help in finding four missing children. According to KETK, CPS was granted legal custody of the children on June 16 in Van Zandt County, but they have not been located. The children range from 8 months old to 13 years old. They are believed to be with Leslie Whittington and Paul Hidalgo. The children missing are Trent Dixon, 13; Lexi Whittington, 11; Kyleigh Whittington, 8; and Ed Hidalgo, 8 months old. Officials say they may be in a four-door white sedan or a 1999 dark red Lincoln Navigator, which was last seen in Canton. Call CPS at 903-368-0064 if you have any information that will help locate them.