Category: Local News Archive

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Two Persons Burned in Troup Area Grass Fire

Troup grass fire 1-14-14TROUP — A burn pile got out of control, leading to a grass fire that burned two persons. It happened around 2:00 Tuesday afternoon in the 21000 block of Mixon Road in Troup. Smith County Fire officials say that a man in a wheel chair lit the burn pile behind a house and it got out of control, trapping him in the flames. A woman who came to his aid was treated on scene for minor injuries. However, the man sustained more serious burns. He was taken to Tyler’s East Texas Medical center and then airlifted to a Dallas hospital. The house was located near a volunteer fire department, so fire crews were able to respond quickly.

Man Accused of Providing Alcohol to Minors

Jimmy StampsARP — A Smith County man has been arrested and charged with providing alcohol to minors. Taken into custody was Jimmy Stamps, 22, of Arp. The arrest warrant stemmed from a New Years Eve party in which a 14 year old boy was found passed out in a driveway. According to authorities, there were other minors at the party, but only one was found passed out. Stamps’ bond was set at $2,500 and he was booked into the Smith County Jail.

Arrests in Undercover Operation in Anderson County

Handcuffed suspect-whitePALESTINE — A 20-month narcotics and firearms trafficking investigation in Anderson County has resulted in nearly two dozen persons being indicted. Most of them are from Anderson County. A contingent of law officers started arrested the suspects Tuesday morning. At last report, 18 suspects had been taken into custody and four remained at large. Sixteen of them have been charged with engaging in organized criminal activity. Read the rest of this entry »

Tyler Police Arrest Two Suspects in Residential/Auto Burglary

Jonathan Daniel BurkettTYLER — Two persons have been arrested following a Tyler burglary. They are identified as Jonathan Daniel Burkett (pictured), 23, from Tyler, and Jeremy Aaron Junkins, 20, from Whitehouse. They are accused of an auto burglary that took place Tuesday morning shortly before 3:15 at 9402 Tipperary. The officers learned from a resident that the victim had a car parked in the driveway that was burglarized. A garage door opener from that car was used to open the victim’s garage, where another vehicle was located. Police say the suspects burglarized that vehicle and left the scene. Read the rest of this entry »

Carter BloodCare Meets Critical Need

thumb_CarterBloodCareDALLAS — Carter BloodCare says there was a strong response to last week’s weather-related crisis that prompted Carter to issue a special call for donations. Michelle Stefan, Vice President of Corporate and Community Resources for Carter, says thanks to a strong media push, Carter saw over 6,100 donors. According to Stefan, “That’s 11% more per day than usual.” She says the media effort “helped over 18,000 lives to be saved.”

Longview Moves Forward with Animal Shelter Plans

thumb_spcaLONGVIEW — Design plans for Longview’s new animal shelter are officially underway. KETK reports the advisory committee met Monday night to propose a few preliminary plans. Committee members say the shelter will add to Longview’s growing list of accomplishments. Recently, committee members toured big city animal shelters like the one in Fort Worth to figure out what’s best for the animals. But the shelter still needs to be approved by the city council. That vote will come later this year.

Stolen Vehicle Recovered in December Theft, Beating

thumb_police-longviewLONGVIEW — Longview police say they’ve recovered a vehicle stolen from a December crime. According to KETK, 21-year-old Alfonso Hernandez was beaten and dumped in the parking lot of Kevin’s Auto Shop Christmas Day. The men responsible for Hernandez’s beating took off in his black Tahoe. That Tahoe was found in Rusk County over the weekend. Longview police say they’re combing the vehicle for evidence and continue their search for at least three men they say played a role in the beating.

New Developments in Church of Wells Case

trudeau_mugWELLS — Some new developments are reported on the Church of Wells, which first hit headlines in July. That’s when media learned about parents looking for their daughter, 26-year-old church member Catherine Grove, after she disappeared from her Arkansas home. KETK has now learned one of the church’s deacons was recently arrested in the state of New York on a charge of second degree aggravated harassment. Read the rest of this entry »

Suspects Fight Back in Animal Cruelty Case

johnny_jared_ketkHOLLY LAKE RANCH — Last week, two Holly Lake Ranch men were arrested by the Wood County Sheriff’s Department, accused of animal cruelty. But before the arrests, their pit bull, Mary Jane, was killed by one of the deputies. Now KETK reports that the men are speaking out. Jared Williams and Johnny Munoz flat out deny any type of animal abuse, and say the department has been less than transparent with why their dog was shot and her puppies were taken away. They say they want answers and an apology, and more importantly, want their dogs back. They say their dog was accused of killing two other dogs in the neighborhood, but according to Munoz and Williams, no one in their area is missing a dog. Read the rest of this entry »

“Kari’s Law” Effort Gains Steam, FCC Attention

DALLAS — More than 400,000 people have now signed a petition on change.org calling for easy access to 911. Last month, Kari Hunt was stabbed to death in a Marshall hotel room. Her nine-year-old daughter called 911 four times from the room but was not connected — because she didn’t know it was necessary to dial “9” for an outside line. Read the rest of this entry »

Fatal Longview Accident

Longview PD BadgesLONGVIEW — A Longview bicyclist has been struck and killed. The accident happened just before 7:00 last night at the intersection of Buchanan Street and Mobberly Avenue. Ivory Van Jackson, 53 was taken to Good Shepherd Medical Center where he later died. He was struck after he pulled out in front of a van. The initial report says it appears as if Jackson failed to yield the right of way at the intersection. The accident remains under investigation.

Kilgore Man Pleads Guilty to Kidnapping

William Emmett LawsonLONGVIEW — A Kilgore man, who had been accused of trying to kill his father and himself last may, has pleaded guilty to aggravated kidnapping. A charge of attempted murder was dismissed against William Emmett Lawson, 51. It’s now up to the jury to decide the punishment in Lawson’s case. Read the rest of this entry »

Theft and Possible Kidnapping Investigated

Smith County Sheriffs DeptTYLER — Tyler police are investigating a theft and possible kidnapping. A woman tells officers her boyfriend kidnapped her and took her to the Family Dollar at 3505 Old Frankston Highway. The man is said to have left the woman in the car and went inside and gathered several items and ran out of the store without paying for them. The suspect removed a weapon from the rear of his vehicle and placed it in the front with him while an employee was attempting to stop him. The employee halted the attempt to prevent the theft when a weapon was produced by the suspect. The suspect fled the area before officers arrived on the scene. Investigators have obtained the identification of the suspect and will be seeking an arrest warrant for aggravated robbery. No charges are being sought at this time for kidnapping.

Smith County Jury Duty Scam

TYLER — Someone claiming to be with the Smith County Sheriff’s Office is contacting individuals claiming that they owe fines for missing jury duty. This is a scam and the person is not connected to the sheriff’s office. According to public information officer John Moore, recently a man contacted a person in the Whitehouse area saying that they owed a fine for missing jury duty. He instructed the individual to go to a local pharmacy and buy a pre-paid money card and then call back with the numbers on the back of the card. The person did as instructed, but was then contacted again by the man saying that the card did not go through and that they would need to purchase another and call back with the new numbers. Before the person called back with the second set of numbers, they spoke with the Whitehouse Police Department who told them it was a scam. Read the rest of this entry »

East Texas Flu Deaths Increasing

H1N1 FluEAST TEXAS — Test results have come back confirming a Lufkin man’s death was because of the H1N1 flu. Officials at Memorial Medical Center in Lufkin confirmed the death on Monday. Hospital officials would only identify the victim as a 49 year old man. The number of flu cases in East Texas is on the rise, and so are the number of deaths. KETK is reporting 12 confirmed flu deaths in East Texas and hundreds of persons testing positive for the the flu. doctors say 90% of the cases this year are from the H1N1 strain. Health officals are urging that you take preventative measures. Everyone over six months of age need to get a flu shot.

Alcohol Makes Toddler Sick

Angelina County Sheriffs Dept PatchLUFKIN — The Angelina County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the case of a toddler with a blood-alcohol content of .18. The youngster has been flown to a Houston hospital. Angelina County Sheriff Greg Sanches tells KETK the babysitter of the child in Pollok reportedly gave the toddler a drink, not knowing its contents. According to medical officials, the child was violently throwing up. The investigation will determine if charges will be filed.

Jacksonville Teen Missing

Savannah OdenJACKSONVILLE — Jacksonville police are looking for a teenage girl who has been missing since last Friday. She is Savannah Oden, 14, who was last seen at the Wal-Mart in Jacksonville shortly after 2:15 on January 10th. It is thought she may have run away with her 17 year old boy friend.

A&M QB Entering NFL Draft Chooses Management

Johnny ManzielCOLLEGE STATION (AP) — Tyler native Johnny Manziel has confirmed that he has signed with LRMR and Maverick Carter, the longtime friend and associate of LeBron James, to handle some of the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner’s off-field projects. The former Texas A and M Aggies quarterback also said Erik Burkhardt will be his agent and Bradley Beckworth and Jeffrey Angelovich are overseeing his business-related matters. Read the rest of this entry »

Rusk County Death Being Probed as Homicide

Jeff Price RUSK COUNTY — The Rusk County Sheriff’s Office is now investigating the death of an elderly man as a robbery and homicide. The victim is identified as Donald Lee Clark, 79. He died from an apparent gunshot wound. Law enforcement officers were called to his home at 11082 Farm Road 2012 about 10:45 Saturday morning. Rusk County Sheriff Jeff Price (pictured) said the suspect, or suspects, dropped a number of items taken from Clark’s home as they fled the scene. They are still awaiting an autopsy report to help determine the time of death. Family members had spoken with Clark on Friday. Sheriff Price said they are being assisted in the investigation by the Texas Rangers and the crime scene unit of the Smith County Sheriff’s Department.

Gladewater AD Arrested for DWI

Jerrod BaughLONGVIEW — Gladewater School District Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Jerrod Baugh, 36, is free on bond today after being charged with DWI. Baugh was arrested around 3:00 Sunday morning in the drive-thru of McDonalds at 408 Marshall Avenue in Longview. He was released from the Gregg County Jail that night. According to KETK, this is not Baugh’s first run-in with the law in Gregg County for alcohol-related offenses. Baugh was booked into the Gregg County Jail in September 2007 for having an open container in his car. Gladewater ISD Superintendent Dr. J.P. Richardson said that Baugh will be placed on paid administrative leave while the district conducts an internal investigation into the matter.

Growth at the Tyler Airport

thumb_americaneagle-planesTYLER — Tyler Pounds Regional Airport posted a 14.9% increase in passenger boardings for 2013. According to a news release, the airport recorded 85,069 passengers in 2013 versus 74,019 passengers in 2012. Additionally, officials say, airport rental car businesses have shown impressive increases. Records indicate the on-site airport rental car companies leasing 13,189 cars as of November 2013 compared to 11,457 cars for the entire year of 2012, with December’s numbers expected to be reported on January 20. Private aviation activities have also grown in 2013, with increased aviation fuel sales up 24% from 2012. Read the rest of this entry »

Neighbors Rally behind Family after House Fire

CHAPEL HILL – The Hester family of Chapel Hill lost everything in a house fire in early January, except for each other — and a giving community. The Chapel Hill Baseball Association held a softball tournament Saturday to raise money: $225 dollars per team. And East Texans have been dropping off extra supplies — food, clothes, cookware, and the like. Homeowner Bobby Hester tells KETK, “What’s important to us is that we have each other and that we have neighbors and friends and a community like this.” Hester says if he won the lottery and was able to move anywhere, there’s no place he’d rather be than in Chapel Hill, with God, family and his community.

Educators Address Increased Number of Failing Schools

thumb_TISD_Logo_NewTYLER — East Texas school officials get busy addressing the issue after the number of schools falling short of minimum standards doubled from 2012. Seven Tyler schools made the list, which grew because of newer, higher standards. Students do have the option to transfer to a different district if they choose, but Tyler ISD’s Karen Raney tells KETK you don’t see students transfer out of her district too often. Raney says, “It’s a funding incentive to take out of district transfers if they choose, but they don’t in this area.”

Fatal Wood County Crash

DPS-carMINEOLA — A Two vehicle accident in Wood County his killed one person and injured one. It happened around 10:15 Sunday morning on U.S. Highway 69, about 5 miles north of Mineola. Dead at the scene was Michael Ray Neagle, 56, of Quitman. Injured was Edward Wilburn, 47, of Pecan Gap, Texas. The Department of Public Safety reports Neagle was northbound when he veered into the southbound lane. He was his by an 18-wheeler driven by Wilburn. The accident remains under investigation.

McConaughey Wins Globe for Best Actor in Drama

Matthew McConaugheyBEVERLY HILLS, CALIF. (AP) — Former Longview resident Matthew McConaughey has won the Golden Globe for best actor in a drama for “Dallas Buyers Club.” Born in Uvalde, McConaughey attended high school in Longview. The other nominees Sunday night were Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”; Idris Elba, “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”; Tom Hanks, “Captain Phillips”; and Robert Redford, “All Is Lost.”

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