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Austin
3:29 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Obama Celebrates 50 Years of the Civil Rights Act

President Obama spoke before the Civil Rights Summit on Apr. 10, 2014.
LBJ Presidential Library and Museum

President  Obama delivered a speech today at the LBJ Presidential Library and Museum at the Civil Rights Summit celebrating 50th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson signing the Civil Rights Act. 

Obama paid tribute to Johnson's tenacity and vision in fostering the passage of the Civil Rights Act —  as well as other landmark legislation including the Voting Rights Act, the Immigration and Nationality Act and the Fair Housing Act. He characterized the Texan president as strong-willed -- but flawed, despite his successes -- and said that the fight for equality isn't  over. 

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Texas Standard
11:25 am
Wed April 9, 2014

Setting A New Standard, Texas Style

'No matter where you are, it's Texas Standard time...'
Credit Time Magazine

In the 21st century, as Texas goes, so goes the rest of the country?  Many think so.  And not just Texans.  As a recent Time magazine story proclaimed, "(i)t's not an accident that three of the five fastest growing cities are in Texas. It's more like destiny."

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Fort Hood
3:59 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Fort Hood Update: Argument Likely Triggered Shooting

Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz visited Fort Hood today,and met with victims and first responders.
https://twitter.com/TexGov

Flags are still flying at half-staff in Fort Hood today, in remembrance of the three people killed and 16 injured by alleged shooter Spc. Ivan Lopez, who also took his own life.

Fort Hood officials held a press conference this afternoon on the status of their investigation into the shooting. Fort Hood commander Lt. Gen. Mark Milley backed away from statements he made yesterday describing Spc. Lopez's "unstable psychiatric or psychological condition" as "the fundamental underlying causal factor" in the shooting.

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Fort Hood
5:27 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

New Details Emerge in Fort Hood Shooting

Lt. Gen. Mark Milley gave an update to press last night on the Fort Hood shooting at the Fort Hood main gate.
Fort Hood Public Affairs Office

This post contains Day 2 developments in the Fort Hood shooting. See our initial report on the shooting here.

Summary: Family counseling centers are set up at Fort Hood and at a location off post to help people process yesterday’s shooting. A chapel on the post was open all night for people who wanted to pray.

Four are dead and 16 are injured from a shooting at the Army post. The suspected shooter, 34-year-old soldier Ivan Lopez, is among the dead. He was killed by a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Lopez was an Iraq war veteran and was in the process of being diagnosed for post-traumatic stress disorder

KUT reporter Kate McGee traveled to Fort Hood yesterday. She talked with KUT Host Jennifer Stayton about the shooting:

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Fort Hood
11:22 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

Four Dead After Shooting at Fort Hood

Lieutenant General Mark Milley talks to reporters about the shooting at Fort Hood that left four people, including the shooter, dead and 16 wounded on April 2, 2014.
Kate McGee, KUT News

Four are dead and 16 are injured from a shooting today at the Fort Hood Army post. The accused shooter is among the dead, killed by a self-inflicted gunshot to the head. Just outside of Killeen, Texas, Fort Hood is about an hour north of Austin. 

Army officials have not released the identity of the shooter because his next-of-kin has not yet been notified, Lieutenant General Mark Milley said at a news conference Wednesday night. But NPR has confirmed his identity as 34-year-old soldier Ivan Lopez. 

"The events of the past have taught us many things at Fort Hood," Milley said. "We will get through this."

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After the Relays
4:24 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

PHOTOS: Scenes from the 2014 Texas Relays

University of Texas senior Briana Nelson in the Women's 4x400 Meter Relay Invitational at the Texas Relays, Saturday, March 29. Texas won the race with a time of 3:26.38, more than a second ahead of second place.
Jon Shapley for KUT News

The 87th annual Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays returned to the University of Texas late last week. More than 6,000 college and high school athletes from across the country converged at the Mike A. Myers Track and Soccer Stadium from Wednesday through Saturday.

SXSW 2014
2:34 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

PHOTOS: Scenes From SXSW 2014

The Southern Fried SXSW event spills out into Sixth Street.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon, KUT News

KUT's multimedia team has been documenting South by Southwest 2014 since its kickoff last week. Take a look at their street scenes below. And check out more pics on our sister station KUTX's Flickr page.

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SXSW 2014
4:52 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Two Dead After Driver Plows Into SXSW Crowd; Suspect in Custody

The incident took place outside The Mohawk, a popular SXSW venue.
Ashley Park for KUT

This post is no longer being updated. See more from KUT:

Summary: An Austin woman and a male visitor from the Netherlands are dead after a car plowed through South by Southwest crowds in Downtown Austin early this morning. The collisions took place along Red River Street near The Mohawk, a popular SXSW venue. Nearly two dozen were injured.  

Austin Police have a suspect in custody, 21 year-old Rashad Charjuan Owens. He's been charged with two counts of capital murder.

The Austin victim is 27-year-old Jamie Ranae West, according to several news reports, including one from the Austin American-Statesman.  

Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo told reporters Thursday morning that the incident started as a traffic stop (part of police efforts to crack down on drunk drivers) at the Shell Gas station at Ninth Street and the Interstate 35 frontage road. Chief Acevedo says the driver drove into the gas station parking lot, but then sped off and started driving the wrong way down Ninth Street.

APD pursued the driver, who then tried to strike one officer working barricade duty, and continued speeding onto Red River. Acevedo says the driver hit multiple pedestrians on the street, killing two on vehicles: an Austin female that was a passenger on a moped, and  a male visitor from the Netherlands who was killed on his bicycle. (Initial police reports said both passengers on the moped were killed.)

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SXSW 2014
12:02 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Edward Snowden Speaks at SXSW Interactive

Edward Snowden's revelations have launched debates about surveillance, privacy, and democracy, but not everyone agrees he should speak at South by Southwest.
livestream.com/texastribune

Update: Edward Snowden made the case for online privacy in his South by Southwest video appearance today. 

Speaking via Skype, and superimposed over an image of the Constitution, Snowden said it needs to be easier for people to interact with secure data.

"If any journalist in the world gets an email from somebody saying, 'Hey, I have something that the public might want to know about,' they need to be able to open it, they need to be able to access that information, they need to be able to have the communication," Snowden said. "Whether they’re a journalist, or an activist, or even your grandma."

NPR has a live blog of Snowden's remarks you can read here.

Original story (10:55 a.m.): Edward Snowden is scheduled to speak via video from Moscow this morning at South by Southwest Interactive.

Snowden, the former contractor facing felony charges for leaking classified documents revealing National Security Agency surveillance, will speak to SXSW's tech community today at 11 CST. The conversation will be moderated by Ben Wizner, director of the ACLU's Speech, Privacy & Technology Project and Snowden’s legal advisor.

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Special Coverage
12:11 pm
Sat March 8, 2014

WATCH: Julian Assange Speaks at SXSW via Skype

Watch live as WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange speaks via satellite video at SXSW Interactive. Livestream is courtesy the Texas Tribune.

Politics
11:29 am
Wed March 5, 2014

Texas & Travis County Primary Live Blog: Who Won, Who's In a Runoff

State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Ft Worth, takes the stage as supporters at her Fort Worth headquarters cheer her victory in the primary election.
Laura Buckman, Texas Tribune

Update: The Results Are In

Election results are now in with between 99.95 and 100 percent of precincts counted statewide. Click Here for KUT's rundown of election night winners. Click Here to check out how Republicans voted across the state. Click Here to see results from the Democrats. 

One hundred percent of Travis County precincts have also reported results. But the final tallies might change just a tad because votes cast after 7 p.m. have not yet been included. The polls in Travis County were open late on Tuesday because of bad weather. Click Here for the latest from Travis County.

Overall, the night turned out to be a good one for many Tea Party candidates. KUT's Ben Philpott takes a look at that:

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Developing
9:07 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Winter Storm Delays Schools, Primary Voting in Central Texas

Ice on a garbage can outside of the KUT studios.
Veronica Zaragovia, KUT News

UPDATE: The National Weather Service curtailed the winter storm warning issued Monday. It is now in effect until 9 a.m. for Bastrop, Burnet, Travis, and Williamson Counties. 

K-12 SCHOOL DELAYS:

School districts in the Austin area are announcing delayed starts for Tuesday morning, due to the winter weather. 

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Breaking
4:55 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Texas Same-Sex Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

Same-sex marriage supporters rallied at the Texas Capitol as the Supreme Court began hearings on the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013. Today, a federal judge in San Antonio declared Texas’ ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional.
Tyler Pratt for KUT News

A federal judge in San Antonio has declared the Texas ban on same-sex marriage in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

Today, Judge Orlando Garcia granted a motion for a preliminary injunction enjoining the state of Texas from enforcing the ban. However, the ruling is on hold until Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott appeals the decision to the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. 

Update: Travis Co. Clerk Says It's 'A Joyous Day'

Travis County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir, whose office issues marriage licenses, is fielding questions on what today's ruling means for gay couples wanting to marry. Although the ruling finds Texas' same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional, the decision is on hold pending appeal.  

DeBeauvoir released a written statement this afternoon lauding the decision: “Because of the stay order in the ruling, the County Clerk cannot issue marriage licenses to gay couples at this time. This is a joyous day, but we will have to wait a little longer to actually deliver the justice and equal rights gay couples so deserve.” 

Update: Wendy Davis 'Pleased' With Ruling

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is "pleased" with today's ruling.

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Austin City Council
10:13 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Austin City Council Votes to Lower Occupancy Limits

The Austin City Council passed regulations to limit occupants in single-family homes from six to four last night on first reading.
Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

The Austin City Council had a long day at the dais yesterday, with a meeting that sputtered along for the better part of 15 hours.

"Stealth dorms," fee waivers, economic incentives, an officer-involved shooting, the MoPac sound wall and  even a proclamation for KUT's own Cactus Cafe. 

With that in mind, here's a rundown of the council action, and inaction, from yesterday.

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Sports
10:17 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Openly Gay NFL Prospect Michael Sam is a Texas Native

A screenshot from Michael Sam's interview with The New York Times. If drafted this May, Sam will become the NFL history.
youtube.com/TheNewYorkTimes

Last night, former Missouri Tigers defensive end Michael Sam announced he is gay. Sam came out during an interview with The New York Times. If a team drafts Sam this spring and signs him, he will become the first openly gay active player in National Football League history.

There's a Texas connection to this national story: Sam is a native Texan, who attended Hitchcock High School in Galveston County. Sam earned first-team All-District honors as a senior in 2008, as both a defensive end and an offensive lineman.

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Winter Weather
3:55 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Central Texas' Latest 'Snow Day' Ending as Winter Advisory Expires

A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect from until noon today.
National Weather Service

Update: As Austin's winter weather advisory is set to expire, Austin roads are all clear. (See an interactive map from TxDOT.) 

The National Weather Service says Saturday morning will be mostly cloudy, but skies clear and grow sunny during the afternoon. Warm winds will bring highs to up into the low 70s Saturday afternoon.

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Energy & Environment
11:05 am
Wed February 5, 2014

KUT's StateImpact Texas Talks Keystone XL Pipeline on 'The Takeaway'

flickr.com/shannonpatrick17

The controversial Keystone XL Pipeline is taking over national headlines again. 

Last week, the State Department released an environmental review of the pipeline, finding tar sands extraction would have little impact on greenhouse gas emissions. 

As KUT's StateImpact Texas reports, "tar sands oil will be extracted regardless of whether or not the pipeline is built."

KUT's Mose Buchele talked with The Takeaway this morning about the impact that the largest oil producer in the world is having in Texas.

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Crime & Justice
3:14 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Report: Texas Led Nation in Exonerations Last Year

The watchtower at Huntsville Prison. Texas lead the nation in the number of exonerees last year.
Caleb Bryant Miller for KUT News

Texas exonerated more prisoners – 13 – than any other state last year.

A report out today shows a nationwide push by prosecutors to re-examine possible wrongful convictions contributed to a record number of exonerations in 2013. The National Registry of Exonerations says 87 people were exonerated last year.

The Texas Tribune has more:

Thirteen Texans were officially absolved of wrongdoing last year for crimes ranging from murder to drug possession. Some had spent more than a decade in prison, and others a few months. The state with the second-most exonerations was Illinois, with nine, followed by New York, with eight. 

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Texas
1:54 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

Photos: Mack Brown & Wife Sally Honored by City

Mayor Lee Leffingwell proclaims January 30th as "Mack and Sally Brown Day." A small ceremony was held for the couple in the council chambers at City Hall.
Sam Ortega for KUT News

Former Longhorns head coach Mack Brown and wife  Sally were honored by the City of Austin last night.

Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell issued a proclamation marking Thursday, Jan. 30 as “Mack and Sally Brown Day” in the capitol city. Brown resigned in December after 16 seasons with 158-48 record, being replaced by Louisville’s Charlie Strong.

See photos of the event in the slideshow above.

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