Filipa Rodrigues

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Halloween
1:05 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Photos: House of Torment’s Last Halloween at Highland Mall

One of the many terrors found within the House of Torment. Celebrating its tenth year, this Halloween is House of Torment's last at Highland Mall.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update: The House of Torment has reached an agreement to stay at its Highland Mall location for a ninth year. "We couldn't be more excited to share what we've created this year with Austin fear fans," says House of Torment president and founder Daniel McCullough in a press release. "We really went above and beyond in terms of both production and design, and we hope you'll come scream with us."

Original story (Oct. 24, 2012): To encourage trick-or-treating in his neighborhood, every year Halloween-lover Dan McCullough would build a haunted house in his backyard in South Austin.

His plan worked – and soon the house’s popularity grew until one year it got out of hand. Over a hundred people showed up to the house and police were called to direct traffic. McCullough’s operation had to end – in that form at least.

McCullough decided to turn professional. The haunted house that originated in McCullough’s backyard is now the House of Torment.

Jon Love visited the House of Torment in its inaugural space 10 years ago. Now he’s the vice president of Harbinger Events, the organization that puts on the haunted house.

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Transportation
4:04 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

Photos: First Look at Capital Metro's New MetroRapid Buses

MetroRapid holds up to 101 people and can make traffic lights stay green longer if running behind schedule.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Austin’s new MetroRapid buses don’t just hold more passengers – they hold traffic lights. 

"As the [buses] approach intersections – and if they are behind schedule – the traffic signal will remain green for up to seven seconds to give these buses additional time to cross the intersection," Capital Metro’s Joe Iannello said today. The group held a press conference to show off the new vehicles.

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Education
10:00 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Video: The Summer Camp That Prepares Texas Students for Disaster

This week, forty five Texas high school students participated in the Texas School Safety Center's third annual Youth Preparedness Camp. It's a week-long camp in Kerrville, Texas, aimed to teach students how to respond to emergencies and  increase disaster preparedness in Texas communities. 

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Texas
1:07 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

After 500th Execution, a Huntsville Death Row History

In 1923, the electric chair became the preferred method of execution in Texas.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update: Kimberley McCarthy was put to death via lethal injection Wednesday evening, becoming the 500th prisoner to be executed in Texas since the state resumed carrying out capital punishment in 1982, following a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court. McCarthy was condemned for the murder of her neighbor, 71-year-old Dorothy Booth, during a robbery.

Earlier: Kimberly McCarthy is scheduled to die by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas this evening. Her upcoming death has caught national and international attention because – if the execution is carried out – she will be the 500th person executed in Texas since the death penalty was reinstated and the fourth woman.

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Texas
1:49 pm
Sat June 22, 2013

Tortured & Left for Dead, Burundi Man Lives to See World Refugee Day

Desire Nizigiyimana was a judge in his home country of Burundi. He fled after the government persecuted him because of a controversial decision to release a political prisoner.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Every year, the United Nations commemorates the creation of the UN Refugee Agency with World Refugee Day, a day that serves to draw attention to those displaced by conflict and persecution.

KUT News spoke with Desire Nizigiyimana about his experience in the Burundi civil war.

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Juneteenth
2:29 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Video: The Struggle to Preserve East Austin's Black Heritage

Harold McMillan has been involved in Austin's art and music community for the past 20 years.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Yesterday was Juneteenth, marking the day in 1865 that Texas slaves learned they were free.

To mark the occasion, this week KUT News has explored the changing landscape of African-American community here in Central Texas.

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First Person
12:30 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

Watch: What It's Like to Be a Black Student on a Mostly White Austin Campus

As a student at UT, Nneka Waturoucha has found that her time in Austin has made her more accepting.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

To celebrate Juneteenth, KUT News is bringing you voices from Austin's black community. 

Nneka Waturoucha is a 19-year-old University of Texas student. Her father is American and her mother is Nigerian. While she grew up around minority communities in Houston, she’s still assimilating into the predominately white West Campus area.

Juneteenth
4:20 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

First Person: Young, Black and Hispanic in Austin

Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

To celebrate Juneteenth, KUT News is bringing you voices from Austin's black community on their past, present and future.

Carlos Wilson is a young Austinite whose heritage is rooted in Central America. 

"I imagine that people aren't going to care about what your heritage is and they're just going to think that we're all the same in the future."

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Juneteenth
12:19 pm
Mon June 17, 2013

Austin History Center's Juneteenth Tour of African-American Heritage

Cynthia Evans holds a newspaper announcing commencement at Anderson High School, Austin's first school for African-American students.
Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

A series of Juneteenth celebrations kicked off this weekend, celebrating the day in 1865 when slaves in Texas learned they were free. To honor these celebrations, KUT News is telling a series of stories about the history of the African-American community in Austin. 

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Austin
2:34 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

KUT News Tries Out Austin's 'Budget in a Box'

It's time to play everyone's favorite game!

The city's Budget in a Box gives folks outside city hall a chance to learn about the city's budgeting process, then try on the shoes of a city budgeter, cutting, padding and managing programs and agencies that keep the city humming along.

KUT News acquired a copy of the game and we gave a two reporters and a few interns the chance to give the budgeting process the old college try. Click the video below to see how we fared.

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Texas
10:57 am
Tue June 4, 2013

TCEQ Needs More Time to Examine LCRA Water Plan

The LCRA is operating under emergency drought relief. Under those orders, most downstream rice farmers did not receive Highland Lakes water for their crops in 2012 or 2013.
Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is taking more time to review the Lower Colorado River Authority’s water management plan. The additional evaluation could take about a year.

The water management plan directs how the LCRA uses lakes Travis and Buchanan to meet the needs of water users. The state wants to meet with stakeholders and collect more data before approving the new plan.

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Austin
8:39 am
Tue May 28, 2013

Austin Receives $2.5M Grant to Fix Problems at Older Homes

Approximately 153,000 homes in Austin and Travis County were built before 1978 – when lead-based paint was still common.
flickr.com/editor

The City of Austin has received a federal grant to address health problems posed by some older homes. The city already has a program to inspect for toxic lead-based paint

The $2.5 million grant will also allow the city to take care of pest and mold problems in older homes and to install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. The grant will provide for services to 138 homes.

 

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2013 Legislative Session
10:20 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Senators to Weigh Bill Allowing Guns on College Campuses

After passing the House, a campus carry bill moves to the Senate.
flickr.com/wallyg

The Texas Senate Criminal Justice Committee is holding a public hearing this afternoon on a bill that would allow guns on college campuses.

The Texas House approved HB 972 two weeks ago. 

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Texas
8:05 am
Thu May 9, 2013

Alleged Fort Hood Shooter Returns to Court Today, Seeks Trial Delay

Maj. Nidal Hasan is charged with killing 13 people and wounding dozens of others in a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in 2009.
courtesy Bell County Sheriff's Department

Army Maj. Nidal Hasan will be back in court this morning. Hasan is charged in the deadly 2009 of Fort Hood shooting rampage.

Military judge Col. Tara Osborn is expected to hear pretrial motions for a continuance until this fall. Just three weeks before standing in trial, Hasan is asking that his trial to be delayed until September 1. Right now, the selected jury is set to start May 29 and the testimony is scheduled to begin July 1.

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Austin
2:23 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

Despite Viral Video Notoriety, UT's Foam Sword Friday Continues (With Nary a Bus in Sight)

University of Texas students at Form Sword Friday today.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Hear the interview with Nick Engmann, who was struck by a Capital Metro bus during last year's Foam Sword Friday.

It’s the last day of regular classes for the spring semester at the University of Texas. And as it happens every last day of class on UT campus, some students are celebrating with Foam Sword Friday, helping students relieve stress before finals.

The campus tradition used to consist of students charging at one another from either side of Guadalupe Street in front of the University Co-Op. That is, until one student was hit by a bus last spring.

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Politics
5:30 pm
Wed April 24, 2013

Photos: Inside the George W. Bush Presidential Center

Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

The George W. Bush Presidential Library has its dedication Thursday at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

Former first lady Laura Bush says one of the most emotionally moving museum exhibits focuses on the 9/11 attacks.

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Texas
12:24 am
Fri April 19, 2013

Photos: West, Texas Comes Together for a Candlelight Vigil

Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

St Mary’s Church in West, Texas was packed with hundreds of residents grieving for those who were injured or killed by the explosion Wednesday evening.

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2013 Legislative Sesssion
4:40 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

New Rules for Abortion Doctors Heads to Senate Floor (Update)

An anti-abortion rally at the Texas Capitol. A bill being heard today requires doctors who perform abortions to have privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of their clinics.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update: A bill requiring abortion providers to have the ability to admit patients at a hospital within 30 miles of the clinic now moves to the Senate floor.

Supporters say the bill would ensure patients have access to care if there is a complication or emergency during or after the abortion. 

“If an abortionist is not competent to obtain hospital privileges, then he is not competent to doing abortions," said Mary Lynn Gerstenschlager with the conservative Texas Eagle Forum.

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Courts
8:55 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Zeta Drug Money Laundering Trial Starts Today in Austin

Prosecutors say Morales laundered drug money through horse racing businesses.
flickr.com/cefeida

Opening statements in a drug money laundering trial get underway in an Austin courtroom today. 

Among the men charged: Jose Trevino Morales. Federal prosecutors call Morales the brother of two top leaders of the Zeta drug cartel, and say he’s involved in a money-laundering scheme for the cartel: hiding millions of dollars in drug money in the horse racing business in Texas and other states.

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Austin
7:51 am
Tue April 16, 2013

2,000 Job Openings Available at City of Austin Career Expo

The City of Austin is hosting a Career Expo Tuesday at the Palmer Events Center.
flickr.com/kandyjaxx

The City of Austin is hosting its third annual Career Expo today at the Palmer Center.

The event will feature over one hundred employers and local agencies including  Austin Fire Department, Austin Independent School District, Dell, Time Warner Cable, Grande Communications and Whole Foods.

Last year more than 3,500 people attended the Career Expo that offers almost 2,000 job openings. 

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