Texas

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Ex-Priest Charged in Beauty Queen's 1960 Murder

Irene Garza confessed to John Feit before she died

(Newser) - Schoolteacher and beauty queen Irene Garza was found raped and bludgeoned to death in a canal in 1960, days after confessing to a priest at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen, Texas. More than 50 years later, that priest has been charged with her murder. John Feit, the main suspect... More »

'Affluenza' Mom Off Hook for $3K Extradition Tab

Order for Tonya Couch to pay up rescinded—for now

(Newser) - It cost just over $3,175 to haul Tonya Couch from Los Angeles back to Fort Worth last month, but the mom of "affluenza" teen Ethan Couch won't have to pay it back to Texas' Tarrant County for now, the Star-Telegram reports. The elder Couch, who's accused... More »

Prosecutor Sent Innocent Man to Death Row. Now, Payback

Texas lawyer Charles Sebesta disbarred for misconduct in Anthony Graves case

(Newser) - A Texas man spent nearly two decades in prison—more than half of that time on death row—before being exonerated in 2010. But Anthony Graves didn't simply celebrate his freedom: He went after the prosecutor who put him behind bars , resulting in Charles Sebesta's disbarment by the... More »

Texas Towns Repeal Sex Offender Residency Laws

They can't afford to defend laws in court

(Newser) - Over the last few months, a broad legal challenge has led more than 20 towns in Texas to ease restrictions on where sex offenders can live instead of fight a costly battle in court. While other states, including neighboring Oklahoma, continue to push offenders away from some neighborhoods, about 45... More »

Cops: Texas Teen Killed Mom, 2 Neighbors

He killed himself before 19-hour standoff

(Newser) - Police in Texas are trying to figure out what led to three murders, a suicide, and a "standoff" in which a mobile home full of dead people was surrounded by police overnight. Police say that on Friday, 19-year-old Dylan Westerburg killed his mother, Jennifer Diane Jacques, 42, before going... More »

Death Row Inmates' Last Words Are Often Surprising

They're frequently positive, says a new study

(Newser) - What would you say if you were about to be executed? There's a good chance your last words would be on the positive side. At least that was the case for 407 death row inmates executed between 1982 and 2015 in Texas, according to a new study published in... More »

What It's Like to Witness an Execution

Columnist describes his first experience

(Newser) - Last week, reporter St. John Barned-Smith went to cover his first execution. "You'll never be the same," one anti-death-penalty protester warned him outside Texas's Walls Unit prison, where James Garrett Freeman would be put to death for killing a Texas game warden in 2007, when he... More »

'Affluenza' Teen Now in Adult Jail

Ethan Couch was transferred Friday

(Newser) - Authorities say a Texas judge changed his mind and decided to move "affluenza" teen Ethan Couch to an adult jail. Tarrant County Sheriff Dee Anderson confirmed during a news conference Friday that the 18-year-old Couch was moved from a juvenile detention center in Fort Worth to the adult county... More »

Manziel's Ex: He Said He'd 'Kill Us Both'

Colleen Crowley says quarterback hit her on Jan. 30

(Newser) - Johnny Manziel's ex-girlfriend claims the NFL quarterback forced her into a car, hit her, dragged her by the hair, and threatened to kill them both during last weekend's altercation in Dallas. Though a police report notes Colleen Crowley "was somewhat vague on the details of the assault,... More »

America's Largest Cross Coming to Texas

It would tower 210 feet over Corpus Christi

(Newser) - The largest cross in the US is coming to the "Body of Christ," also known as Corpus Christi, Texas. The Corpus Christi Cross Project broke ground at the Abundant Life Fellowship campus off Interstate 37 on Sunday. Pastor Rick Milby says the massive cross will eventually stretch 95... More »

Texas Resident Gets Zika Virus Through Sex

And the US and Brazil announce a partnership to fight the virus

(Newser) - Health officials say a patient in Texas has acquired the Zika virus through sexual transmission, the AP reports. Dallas County Health and Human Services said Tuesday it received confirmation from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The patient was infected after having sexual contact with an ill person... More »

Teen Friends Found Dead Within Hours of Each Other

Suicides are suspected in Texas tragedy

(Newser) - On Saturday night, 17-year-old Hillary Kate Kuizon was reported missing. By a few hours after midnight Sunday, both she and a friend, 17-year-old Ritu Sachdeva, had both been found dead by suspected suicide in Murphy, Texas. "If ... there was some sort of pact, we need to know that because... More »

Report: HS Baseball Players Ran Underground Fight Club

Coaches investigated for using racist language, mocking hurt players

(Newser) - High-school baseball players in Texas were running an underground fight club while their coaches mocked injured students, according to documents obtained by the Dallas Morning News . An investigation into Plano East Senior High head coach Travis Collins and assistant coach Reagan Allen started last year after parents complained the coaches... More »

Judge: 'Affluenza' Teen Can Stay in Juvie

Prosecutors wanted Couch in 'big-boy jail'

(Newser) - The Texas teenager who used an "affluenza" defense in a fatal drunken-driving wreck won't be moved to an adult jail as he awaits a hearing to determine whether his case will be transferred to adult court, where he could face time behind bars, a judge ruled Friday. Ethan... More »

145 Sickened by Gas Leak at Texas School

Officials blame leaky boiler

(Newser) - At least 145 students and staff members at a Southeast Texas middle school received hospital treatment after an apparent carbon monoxide leak on Thursday, authorities say. Beaumont emergency personnel say the children and adults from Marshall Middle School were being treated Thursday for injuries not believed to be life-threatening, the... More »

Another Texas Woman Dies in Road-Rage Shooting

Police are still searching for a male suspect

(Newser) - Police are searching for a man who killed a Texas woman in an apparent road-rage shooting in Arlington on Wednesday. Police say Brittany Daniel, 26, was shot while driving on Interstate 30 about 7pm, reports the Dallas Morning News . Daniel's father tells WFAA that his daughter was dropping off... More »

Affluenza Teen Returns to the US

Ethan Couch is finally out of Mexico

(Newser) - Just days after he dropped his deportation appeal , "affluenza teen" Ethan Couch has been returned to the US from Mexico. Couch arrived in Texas on Thursday and was expected to be taken straight to a juvenile detention center, CBS Local reports. His next court hearing is scheduled for Feb.... More »

Dad Stands Trial for Taking Daughter's iPhone Away

'I didn’t want the police department telling me how to parent my child'

(Newser) - A Texas father arrested for taking away his daughter's cell phone as a punishment will avoid jail but may suffer an even worse fate. In 2013, Ronald Jackson viewed a text he thought was "rude" on his 12-year-old daughter's iPhone 4, so he confiscated it, CBS DFW... More »

DeLoreans Being Made Again for First Time in 35 Years

Texas maker of 'Back to the Future' car gets green light for new models

(Newser) - A car that's been stuck in the past can now go forward into the future, thanks to a government initiative that's allowing new models to be made for the first time in 35 years, KPRC reports. DeLoreans—the vehicle made famous in the Back to the Future movie... More »

'Affluenza' Teen Decides to Stop Fighting Mexico

Ethan Couch will likely be back in Texas this week

(Newser) - "Affluenza" teen Ethan Couch has dropped an appeal against deportation and will return to Texas to face charges in the coming days, said his Mexican lawyer Tuesday. "I gave him several options, but he decided to go to Texas to face whatever charges he faces," said attorney... More »

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