MARSHALL – Marshall police are warning about gas pump skimmers, which are now being found inside pumps and not on the outside of the machines. One way you can help from falling victim to these thieves is to enable Bluetooth on a smart phone and have it search for any unusual signals before swiping a card at the gas pump. If any signal comes back from the gas pump, the pump should not be used. You are also encouraged to keep a close watch on their bank accounts and to notify your bank immediately if you notice any suspicious activity on the account.… Read the rest of the article…
TEXARKANA (AP) — A former Texas mortician whose legal issues were the subject of the 2011 film “Bernie” is appealing his sentence of 99 years to life in prison in the killing of a wealthy widow. Bernie Tiede was resentenced last year for his 1999 murder conviction in the fatal shooting of Marjorie Nugent, 81, whose body was found in his freezer. In a petition filed Tuesday with the Sixth Texas Court of Appeals, Tiede’s attorneys argue that his 1997 indictment was tainted by a biased grand juror and that the jury that sentenced him was “repeatedly exposed to outside influence” in the form of non-case-related publicity, including the film in which he was played by actor Jack Black. They also say a previous plea agreement calling for a 20-year prison system was breached. Prosecutors say Tiede stole millions of dollars from Nugent.
TYLER – Two Tyler patrolmen have been honored by the Tyler City Council. Officers Brian Tomlin and Darrell Gardner have a combined 45 years of working for the Tyler Police Department. Sergeant Tomlin began his career with the Tyler Police Department in the spring of 1992. The following year he was awarded the Rookie of the Year title. He helped new officers prepare for solo assignments as a field training officer. Sergeant Tomlin was assigned to the traffic unit in 1998. Promoted to Sergeant in 2002, he currently works out of the Faulkner Station and supervises the day shift traffic officers.… Read the rest of the article…
GILMER – Authorities in Northeast Texas are looking for a robbery suspect. The man, said to be in his early 20s, is wanted in the robbery of a gas station in Lone Star around 12:30 Wednesday morning. Gilmer police say the same suspect was also responsible was a Gilmer robbery. No injuries were reported, but authorities stress the man is armed and should be considered to be dangerous. If you recognize him, contact your local law enforcement agency.
TYLER – The Tyler City Council has approved the city manager amending the agreement with Adams Engineering for the design of the Courtney Miller Drainage project and to authorize a contract with Capps-Capco Construction, Inc. to construct the Lake Street culvert replacement project. The Courtney Miller Drainage project, which is located between Courtney Drive and Miller Drive, has been on the Half Cent Sales Tax project list for more than 20 years. In 2006, Adams Engineering was commissioned to create an underground design for an open channel to alleviate property flooding. The project has experienced delays multiple times due to easement acquisition and funding constraints. This project is one identified in this year’s Drainage Capital Improvement Plan Strategy. … Read the rest of the article…
TYLER – The Tyler City Council has awarded a $4,435,000 construction contract to Gracon Construction, Inc. It’s for the Golden Road Backwash Pump Station and Clearwell Baffles project. Water from the water distribution system is curretnly used as the source for filter backwash supply water. The backwash water is used to clean the rapid sand filters, which are part of the water treatment process. Once completed, the pump station, a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) requirement, will pull water from the clearwells to use in the filter backwash process. Construction is expected to begin by June and will be complete by April 2018.… Read the rest of the article…
AUSTIN – A North Carolina-style “bathroom bill” that targets transgender people has fully cleared the Texas Senate and is now going through a house committee. A local representative says, he favors it. House member Dan Flynn of Van says he has decided to vote in favor of the bill. Flynn says his decision is based on the number of inquiries his office has received in support of the measure. According to Flynn, “I simply cannot justify allowing men to enter into such a private area for women, and vice versa.” The bill will require all Texans to use the bathroom that corresponds to the sex on their birth certificates in public schools and in government-funded buildings. Even though the bill has cleared the senate, it still faces big obstacles from becoming law.
TYLER – A Tyler man accused of setting a woman on fire has been arrested by U.S. Marshals. The Cherokee County Sheriff’s office reports 25 year old Austin David Taylor was arrested around 8:00 Tuesday night. Injured in the incident earlier this month was Emily Roberts. It occurred in the Shadybrook Addition of Lake Palestine. KETK reports that family members say Roberts was burned on more than 25% of her body. She was transferred to a Dallas hospital for treatment. Taylor was booked into the Smith County Jail for violating probation and an aggravated assault/family violence warrant our of Cherokee County. His bond is $200,000.
KILGORE — A Kilgore man was arrested Monday after police said he assaulted two men and pulled a knife on them. Dustin Ray Riley, 27, was held Tuesday in the Gregg County Jail on $10,000 bond. He’s charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Officers were called a little after 5:30 p.m. Monday to the corner of Kings Highway and Bell Street in Kilgore in reference to an assault in progress. Riley is also suspect in a hit-and-run. Additional details were not available.
SMITH COUNTY — A Tyler man has been indicted for allegedly committing a sex crime against a child. According to KETK, the Smith County District Attorney’s Office handed down the indictment March 16th for Matthew Clinton Branin, 18, for aggravated child sexual assault. He was arrested January 19th by the Smith County Sheriff’s Office. Branin was booked into the Smith County Jail and is currently being held on $400,000 bond.
TYLER — One person was taken to a local hospital after an auto-pedestrian accident in the downtown Tyler area. According to KETK, the accident at the intersection of Line Street and North Broadway Avenue was reported around 12:15 Tuesday afternoon. Tyler Police said two women were crossing Broadway at Line Street when one person hesitated in crossing. Authorities said a driver began to turn and the woman began walking across, resulting in her injury when she was struck. The driver made sure she was okay and then left the scene. He later came back while police were investigating. The incident is under investigation as to whom is at fault. Police said the crossing signals were working properly at the intersection.
MARSHALL – The Marshall Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating a theft suspect. On March 7th, shortly before 7:30am, a man walked into Walmart on East End Boulevard North and went to the electronics department. He then loaded two computers into a shopping cart and left the store without paying. Surveillance video captured the man leaving in a small white car. Anyone with information on the identity of this man is urged to call the Marshall Police Department at 903-935-4575. Those wishing to remain anonymous are asked to call Marshall-Harrison County Crime Stoppers at 903-935-9969.
Smith County residents will be able to fireworks next month, thanks to the action Tuesday of the Smith County Commissioners Court. The county commissioners approved an order authorizing fireworks sales from April 16-21 for San Jacinto Day. The 84th Texas legislature authorized three additional holidays, which were also approved in Smith County last year. They are are Texas Independence Day, celebrated this year on March 2; San Jacinto Day, April 21 and Memorial Day, May 29. Smith County Fire Marshal Connie McCoy-Wasson said Smith County residents are allowed to pop fireworks throughout the year, and are only restricted on when they can buy them. The Commissioners Court will again consider approving fireworks sales for Memorial Day at a future meeting.
TYLER – The Texas Association of School Business Officials has recognized 26 school districts with an Award of Merit for following best practices in the area of purchasing operations. One of those awards went to the Tyler Independent School District.This makes two years in a row Tyler ISD has received this award. The award provides recognition to school districts, open-enrollment charter schools and education services centers that are committed to following professional standards in the acquisition of goods and services. According to Nakeia Burrell, coordinator of budget and purchasing/risk management, “This award shows our commitment to stewardship and providing excellence in all Tyler ISD procurement functions.”
KILGORE – Kilgore police are looking for a suspect wanted in a scam using Facebook. Two Henderson women are out $200 after trying to buy a car on Facebook. They used Facebook Messenger to say they wanted to buy a car. They were contacted and a man took them to Kilgore for the purchase. Once in Kilgore, he took their money and gave them a receipt and a key. He told them a woman would bring them the car shortly. He left and she never showed up. They have a picture of a suspect, but they don’t know if the picture is real or fictitious.… Read the rest of the article…
MARSHALL – The Marshall Police Department has released an updated photo of a woman who has been missing since March 14th. Francine Robertson, 29, of Marshall, was last seen walking in the 2300 block of West Rusk Street. It is believed she may suffer from some sort of mental illness and family members are concerned about her welfare. She stands about 5’7″ and weighs around 270 pounds. She was last seen wearing a gray t-shirt with black sleeves, blue jeans and no shoes. Anyone who has seen Francine Robertson or knows where she can be found is urged to call the Marshall Police Department at 903-935-4575.
LONGVIEW – Longview police continue to investigate a shooting that occurred last Friday. The person injured in the shooting was released from the hospital the same day. The shooting occurred shortly before 5:00 Friday afternoon on Jewel Drive. When police arrived, the victim had already been taken to the hospital by private vehicle. Authorities have not released details about the shooting, including the victim’s name.
TYLER – Lifelong Tyler resident Taylor Heaton has announced his candidacy for Judge of the County Court at Law Number 2. Heaton, a Republican, plans to run for the seat currently held by Judge Randall Rodgers who has informally said he plans to retire at the end of his term in December 2018. Heaton has worked as an Assistant District Attorney for the Smith County District Attorney’s Office since November 2006. For the past 8 years he has worked primarily in the juvenile prosecutions division where he has prosecuted numerous felony and misdemeanor cases and worked closely with juvenile probation, local law enforcement, and the County Court at Law Number 3 of Smith County. Heaton said “My experience as a prosecutor, public servant, and trial attorney has uniquely equipped me to handle both the heavy criminal caseload as well civil matters” that come before the court.
HENDERSON – Officials have identified the victim as Brandon Allen Conder, 37, of Dallas in a fatal two-vehicle accident in Rusk County shortly after 7:15 Monday morning. A westbound pickup veered into the eastbound lane and collided with a Freightliner truck-tractor towing a semi-trailer on U.S. Highway 79, three miles east of Henderson. Conder, the pickup’s driver, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other driver, a man from Woodville, was not injured.
MARSHALL – New patches are appearing on the uniforms of Marshall police officers. This is the first redesign of the patch in over 35 years. The new patch symbolizes the history of the city. The patch, which will be worn on both sleeves of each police officer’s uniform, displays the Texas flag in the shape of the state of Texas, the American flag, a train and the year 1890. The train represents a portion of the city’s history of being the major railroad center of the T&P Railroad from the late 19th century until the mid-20th century. The year 1890 is the year the Marshall Police Department was formed. The transition of the new patches is underway and should be complete within a few months.
TYLER – The headliner for this year’s Tyler Cattle Barons’ Gala will be Trace Atkins. The gala’s committee made the announcement Monday. It will be held on Saturday, August 12th, at the Texas Rose Horse Park/Brunson Equestrian Center, 14078 State Highway 110 North, just northwest of Tyler. The theme for this year’s gala is “Legends of the Call.” It is to honor those legends in the community who have fought the fight against cancer, and the volunteers, businesses, sponsors and members of the medical community who are themselves legendary for working and giving tirelessly to find a cure for this dreaded disease.… Read the rest of the article…
AUSTIN (AP) — A bill reducing fees for gun licenses statewide is heading to the full Texas Senate. Jacksonville Republican Senator Robert Nichols originally wanted to scrap the entire $140 fee for first-time licenses to carry concealed and holstered handguns, as well as the $70 charge to renew licenses after five years. But the nonpartisan Legislative Budget Board estimated that doing so would cost Texas $55-plus million during a two-year state budget cycle. Instead, Nichols on Monday introduced a modified version reducing the first-time and renewal fee to $40 each. The fiscal impact of that hasn’t yet been calculated. The Senate State Affairs Committee then unanimously approved Nichols’ amended proposal to the full chamber, where it should pass easily. Gun advocates are applauding the bill, saying Texas’ fees are among the nation’s highest.
MINEOLA — A Smith County woman, who was said to have been kidnapped, has been found unharmed and the man who was said to have taken her has been arrested. It was earlier reported that a man, identified as James Derrick Adams Jr., 26, kicked in the door of a home in the Enchanted Lakes area in the northwest part of the county. He was then said to have abducted Melissa Nicole Boaz, 37. They drove off in a green minivan with a broken rear window. But, after the woman was found, she told deputies she was not taken against her will and the situation was a misunderstanding. No word on where she was found, but Adams was arrested on County Road 456, south of County Road 455. He was arrested after leaving the mini van and running into a wooded area. Even though he is not facing a kidnapping charge, he could be facing burglary charges if the woman wants to press charges.
LONGVIEW – A shoplifter has been arrested in Longview. Clinton Paul McDowell, 42, of Longview is said to have tried to leave the Academy Store on Forest Square without paying for several boxes of ammunition. To compound his problems, he has 4 prior convictions for theft. McDowell has been charged with theft of property with two or more previous convictions. He remains in the Gregg County jail under a $5,000 bond.
GILMER – An appeals court is rejecting the appeal of a convicted sex offender in Upshur County. The 6th Court of Appeals in Texarkana has turned down the appeal of 48 year old Orlandos Lugene Johnson, of Gilmer. He had argued his lawyer had “rendered ineffective assistance” during his trial. Last May, Johnson pleaded guilty two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child. He asked the court to set his punishment. He was sentenced to 50 years in prison on each count, to be served concurrently. Johnson was an employee of Gilmer school system and had worked for the district over 20 years.
LONGVIEW – Two Longview burglary suspects have been arrested. They were arrested after a police officer heard an audible alarm at a business on South High Street. He then saw two persons leaving through the damaged front door of the building. After a short foot chase, both were taken into custody. One was a juvenile. The other was Dewayne Lamont Black, Jr, 18, of Longview. They found had three previous convictions for evading arrest. So, besides being charged with burglary of a building, he is also charged with evading arrest with prior convictions.
TYLER – Local officials gathered in Tyler Monday morning to discuss Sanderson Farms building several facilities in Smith and Wood counties. The company plans to construct a $200 million dollar feed mill, hatchery, poultry processing plant, and wastewater treatment facility. At full capacity, the complex will employ 1700 people, will require 80 contract growers, and will be equipped to process and sell 375 million pounds of dressed poultry meat annually. Tyler Economic Development Council President and CEO Tom Mullins says the project will have a tremendous impact on the Winona, Lindale and Mineola areas.… Read the rest of the article…
TYLER — Tyler ISD will hold Community Forums to present information to the public on proposed Bond 2017 projects. Superintendent Dr. Marty Crawford, Director of Facilities Tim Loper and other Tyler ISD administrators will present the information and answer questions. The bond package provides for remodeling & additions to John Tyler High School & Robert E. Lee High School. According to the Tyler ISD website, approximately 5,000 students will be in new or renovated spaces. The schedule looks like this:
Thursday, March 23
First Christian Church
S. Broadway Avenue at Loop 323
Tuesday, March 28
College Hill Baptist Church
W. Houston Street at Confederate Avenue… Read the rest of the article…
MURCHISON – A Henderson County burglary suspect is in custody because of a caller’s tip. The caller told authorities 19 year old Travis Brax Davis of Murchison was a likely suspect in a burglary and was driving without a valid license. Sheriff’s deputies pulled him over on Highway 31 near a service station in the Murchison area around 8:30 Sunday night. When they saw several large, fixed-blade knives near his drivers’ seat, Davis and his two passengers were asked to get out of the car. They found inside a knife sheath a plastic baggie with a white crystal-like substance that appeared to be methamphetamine. Additional drug paraphernalia was discovered in the vehicle. They also found in the car property belonging to a local RV park that had reported a burglary on Saturday. Davis is in the Henderson County jail on charges of burglary of a building and possession of a controlled substance.
KILGORE — One person is in custody following what the Kilgore police called an emergency situation at the Lakewood Manor Apartments on Danville Drive. Taken into custody was Daniel Aaron Nutt, 32, of Kilgore. He has been charged with terroristic threat family violence and resisting arrest and booked into the Kilgore Municipal Jail. Around 5:15 Sunday afternoon, the police received a report of assault family violence with a possibly armed suspect. The caller and victim told officers he had been involved in an argument with his roommate, who he identified as Nutt. He said during the argument Nutt threatened to kill him and approached in a threatening manner. Fearing for his safety, he climbed out of his apartment window prior to the arrival of officers. The victim added that the apartment contained numerous handguns and long guns. Nutt initially refused to come out of the apartment, so officers partially evacuated the complex. A short time later Nutt left the apartment and was arrested.