Crime

Crime
2:20 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

To UT 'Campus Watch' Team, Crime is No Laughing Matter

UT Police urge new students on campus to exercise caution.
Mose Buchele, KUT News

The University of Texas Police Department sees a drop in crime rates over the summer as many students leave Austin. Now that students are back on campus, UTPD advises  students to be aware of their surroundings, have a game plan when going out at night and to report all suspicious activity.

That's according to UTPD Officer Layne Brewster, who regularly sends Campus Watch emails to the UT community recapping reports of crime at the university.

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Police
4:20 pm
Thu August 29, 2013

Austin Police Officer Cleared in Fatal 2012 Springtime Shooting

A grand jury has declined to indict Officer Eric Copeland over his fatal shooting of Ahmede Bradley.
Nathan Bernier, KUT News

An Austin police officer who fatally shot a man in East Austin last year will not face charges.

After reviewing the shooting, a Travis County grand jury declined to indict Officer Eric Copeland. Police say he shot Ahmede Bradley three times in the chest after a struggle over Copeland’s handgun. The shooting happened the same night as the killing of APD Officer Jaime Padron, in an unrelated incident.

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Justice
6:03 pm
Wed August 28, 2013

Texas Couple Appeals Sentence for 'Satanic Ritual Abuse'

Fran Keller at the Crain Unit in Gatesville on August 26, 2013.
Karen Bernstein for KUT News

In 1989, Fran Keller and her husband Dan wanted to find work with a purpose – something that could bring them closer to their community. They opened a day care in their rented house in Oak Hill, with a desire to take in pre-school age children and toddlers, even those who had a history of behavioral problems.

But Fran Keller says she never expected to find herself where she is now: serving her 23rd year in prison at the Crain Unit in Gatesville, Texas.

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Fort Hood Shootings
6:48 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Inside the Fort Hood Courtroom: Quotes from the Hasan Trial

Brigitte Woosley

Today wraps up the first week of testimony in the trial of Maj. Nidal Hasan, the man accused of killing 13 people and wounding more than 30 at the Fort Hood Army Post on Nov. 5, 2009.  

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Fort Hood Shootings
8:14 am
Wed August 7, 2013

What You Need to Know From Day One of the Fort Hood Trial

Sketch of Staff Sgt. Alonzo Lunsford testifying in Tuesday's trial.
Brigitte Woosley, sketch artist

Today marks Day Two in the trial of Major Nidal Hasan, the Army psychiatrist accused of killing 13 people and wounding more than 30 at Fort Hood on Nov. 5, 2009. The trial is expected to take months – only twelve of the nearly 300 witnesses testified Tuesday. More of the prosecution’s witnesses will testify today as prosecutors continue to build a case against Hasan. 

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Austin
11:33 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Loud, Late Night Amber Alert Rattles iPhone Users: How to Change Settings

Some iPhone users were unaware they would receive new "Government Alerts” – until they were notified of an Amber Alert last night.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

An Amber Alert issued late yesterday evening was a wake-up call to many iPhone users in Texas.

An alert was issued close to 10:45 last night for abducted children in San Angelo, Texas, 200 miles northwest of Austin. An Amber Alert was then sent to iPhone users in Austin – which was announced with a loud, jarring tone. 

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Police
12:37 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

APD Investigates Report of Gunmen at North Austin Movie Theater

Roads aren't closed around the theatre but traffic may be delayed.
Map Data @2013 Google

Update: Austin Police say a SWAT situation at the Tinseltown Theater has ended. No suspects were located.

Police are allowing employees of surrounding businesses to return to work.

Original Story (7:08 a.m.): Austin Police are asking people to avoid the Tinseltown Theater in far *North Austin. They’re investigating a report of two armed people in the theater.

Police say they got a call around 3:45 Monday morning from the theaters' cleaning crew. The three staff members say they saw two people dressed in all black enter the theater carrying long items – possibly weapons.

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University of Texas
12:35 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

In Wake of Kidnapping & Assault, UT Students Told to Stay Vigilant

UTPD urges people walking at night to be aware of the yellow boxes located on campus. They are equipped with emergency phones that can put users in direct contact with UTPD and send out their location.
Rachel Adams-Heard

Campus safety is on students' minds after a student was kidnapped and sexually assaulted last week. The attack took place late at night in the 900 block of West 26th Street, in the heart of the West Campus.

SURE Walk is a student government volunteer program that offers a safe way for students to get home at night: students can call a phone number and request someone to walk with them.

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Austin
10:39 am
Sat May 11, 2013

Inmate Dies at Travis County Jail

Travis County officials say a 53-year-old woman died at the Travis County Correctional Complex located just east of the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

Laureen Butler from New Orleans was found unresponsive at around 3 a.m. Friday morning. Jail medical staff were called to the scene. The staff also called Austin/Travis County EMS and began administering lifesaving measures. EMS arrived on the scene a short time later but Butler was pronounced dead at 4:24 a.m.

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Austin
7:06 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

Community Walk Through 12th and Chicon Saturday

The area around 12th and Chicon Streets has been known as an open air drug market for decades, says APD commander Fred Fletcher.
aaronisnotcool at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cavalierhorn/4073578979/

Austin police are hosting a "community walk" Saturday through an area of the city infamous for its open-air drug market. APD has targeted the area of 12th and Chicon Streets since last year with a so-called Drug Market Intervention program modeled after an effort in High Point, North Carolina.  

The program allows non-violent drug dealers to have their criminal cases suspended if they agree to work with family members or community groups to receive drug treatment and job training. The program got up and running last year after local law enforcement saw it had been used across the country with impressive results, the Austin Chronicle reported in an extensive piece last July. 

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Crime
5:35 am
Mon April 29, 2013

After Boston Bombings, Being Vigilant Without Being Paranoid

Kirsten Brunner with her family. She says her boys inspired her to create the SAFE Tool.
facebook.com/TheSAFETool

Click the player to listen to the story as it aired on KUT 90.5.

In the two weeks since the Boston Marathon bombing, suspects have been identified and news outlets have interviewed people who knew them – asking if there was any sign that they might be capable of the attacks.

The same questions were asked after the Newtown Elementary School shooting.

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Austin
11:21 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Man Identified in Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting (Update)

A man was shot by police in the 700 block of Valdez last night.
Map Data @2013 Google

Update: Austin Police have identified the man killed by police last night as 54-year-old Herbert Babelay.

Original Story (April 24, 8:23 a.m.): Four Austin Police Officers involved in a fatal shooting last night are on paid administrative leave. The officers shot and killed a man who they say pointed a rifle at them.

It happened in southeast Austin – in the 700 block of Valdez. Police were called to that address at 8:40 p.m. on a report of a homicidal or suicidal man.

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Capital Metro
2:43 pm
Mon April 22, 2013

'Dark Days:' Austin Bus Hijacker Was Capital Metro Employee

A Capital Metro employee hijacked a bus this weekend before killing himself.
flickr.com/geolobo

This weekend, a man hijacked a Capital Metro bus – resulting in a police pursuit that lead to Bastrop before the hijacker killed himself.

Today, Capital Metro announced the man that took the bus was one of their own: Salvador Martinez, a bus operator employed by Cap Metro contractor McDonald Transit. Martinez’s tenure with Cap Metro dated back to 1998.

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Texas
8:23 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Ex-Justice Of The Peace Charged With Killings In North Texas

Texas authorities have charged Eric Williams, former justice of the peace, with the murders of the Kaufman County district attorney and his assistant.
Kaufman County Sheriff's Office AP

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 3:05 pm

"A former justice of the peace has been charged with murder in the slayings of a North Texas district attorney and his assistant who prosecuted him for theft, officials announced Thursday," The Associated Press reports. Eric Williams is also charged with the murder of the district attorney's wife.

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Politics
5:30 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Bill Would Assess Condition of Inmates in Solitary Confinement

About 2,000 inmates may have mental illness or developmental disability. A Senate bill aims to learn more.
Liang Shi for KUT

More than 5 percent of the prison population in Texas is in solitary confinement, more than double the 2 percent national average. But one state senator says too little is known about the condition of these prisoners, especially those who may have been diagnosed with mental health or cognitive problems.

The Senate Criminal Justice Committee was considering the bill Wednesday afternoon.

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Texas
10:02 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Texas Prosecutor Murder: Wife Of Jailed Ex-Justice Arrested

A wreath of flowers in honor of slain District Attorney Mike McClelland at the Kaufman County [Texas] Courthouse in early April.
Richard Rodriguez Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 12:44 pm

"The wife of a former justice of the peace is being held on a capital murder charge in the killings of the Kaufman County District Attorney, his wife and a top prosecutor," The Dallas Morning News reports.

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Crime
2:17 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Expert: Recent Attacks On Justice Community 'Really Unprecedented'

The home of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland is surrounded by police tape in Forney, Texas, on Monday. Authorities launched a massive investigation into the weekend killings of McLelland and his wife.
Tim Sharp Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 2:32 pm

Two county prosecutors fatally shot in Texas. Colorado's top prison official gunned down. And a dozen more members of the U.S. justice community — ranging from police to judges — victims of targeted killings since the beginning of the decade.

What's going on?

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Texas
9:59 am
Mon April 1, 2013

Texas on 'High Alert' Following District Attorney's Killing

In Forney, Texas, Kaufman County Sheriff's deputies are on the lookout after the killings of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife in their Forney home.
Mike Fuentes AP

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 11:51 am

  • From the NPR Newscast early Monday

"Security is high this morning for both elected officials and employees" in Kaufman County, Texas, after the shooting deaths of District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife Cynthina, KERA reports.

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Criminal Justice
6:21 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Cartels a Concern for DPS, But Not the Only One

Pink wooden crosses are placed where the corpses of eight murdered women were found in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico
Alfredo Estrella / AFP/Getty Images

The Texas Department of Public Safety calls Mexican cartels the most significant organized crime threat in the state. In its 2013 report, the agency said six cartels are operating in Texas by moving drugs, people, cash and weapons across the border.

"It is a top DPS priority to severely obstruct the range and power of Mexican drug organizations to affect the public safety of Texas citizens," said DPS Director Steven McCraw at the Texas Emergency Management Conference in San Antonio this week.

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Police
4:20 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Austin Police Plan Rundberg Crackdown This Weekend

Officers will target persistent crime in the Rundberg area this weekend.
Nathan Bernier, KUT News

Austin Police are giving more attention this weekend to the Rundberg Lane area of North Austin, conducting what they call a 100 percent enforcement initiative on Friday and Saturday nights between 9 p.m. and 3 a.m.

Officers will watch for all crimes, of course, including traffic offenses, but will give particular attention to drugs, prostitution and gang-related crimes. Austin Police Lt. Allen McClure says the goal is a reduction in crime in an area with a disproportionate amount of it.

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