San Antonio

Joey Palacios/TPR

The FBI is now monitoring an investigation of a fatal, videotaped shooting involving two Bexar County sheriff's deputies. Some neighbors of the man who died in the San Antonio subdivision of Walnut Pass are on edge.

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons user Jonathanmallard

This story comes from Texas Standard.

For about a century, the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT) were caretakers of the Alamo. The group rescued parts of it from being demolished and made efforts to carefully preserve its history.

But new Texas General Land Commissioner George P. Bush ended an arrangement with the DRT last month. Bush cited multiple issues – including the DRT’s failure to keep the Alamo operating without placing significant financial demands on his office.

That’s ignited a new battle over the Alamo.

Callie Richmond, Texas Tribune

Following a punishing loss to Republican State Sen. Dan Patrick in the race for Lieutenant Governor, Leticia Van de Putte appears ready to run again - but not for her seat in the Senate.

The third generation San Antonian is ending speculation about her future by announcing her plans to campaign for the seat recently held by Housing and Urban Development secretary Julian Castro: Mayor of San Antonio. Van de Putte says that the support she received from her hometown was what influenced her to run.

Janis Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

Two weeks after losing her bid for lieutenant governor, state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte on Wednesday night announced that she was running for mayor of San Antonio and would not finish her term at the Texas Capitol.

“I’m running for mayor. I’m coming home,” Van de Putte said in an interview with KSAT-TV. "My decision to run for mayor had to do with how I can serve the people the best."

The NBA now has its first full-time female assistant coach, as the San Antonio Spurs have hired WNBA star Becky Hammon to join their bench for the upcoming season. The move comes as Hammon says she'll retire after her current season playing for the San Antonio Stars.

Erika Rich/BDP

San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro will go before a Senate confirmation committee Tuesday, the first step in the process of becoming the new leader of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In May, President Barack Obama nominated the three-term San Antonio mayor for the job, replacing Shaun Donovan.

If confirmed, Castro said while he'll be focused on housing in his new role, he's always been a strong supporter of education and hopes that's how he'll be remembered.

Spurs Beat The Heat To Take Home NBA Title

Jun 16, 2014

In a dramatic Game 5 of the NBA Finals, the San Antonio Spurs triumphed over the Miami Heat to win the NBA title Sunday night, closing out the series with a 104-87 victory.

After a dismal start, the Spurs rallied and turned things around, entering halftime with a 47-40 lead. When the game resumed, they never looked back and were up by more than 20 points multiple times in the second half.

A White House official said Thursday that President Obama will tap San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro to become housing secretary and Shaun Donovan, his current housing chief, to run the budget office.

A formal announcement is scheduled to be made on Friday afternoon.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/imcom/7186596299/

The Texas Land Commissioner is responding to Internet rumors that the Alamo could be handed over to the United Nations if the San Antonio mission is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In a statement issued today, Commissioner Jerry Patterson said reports that a UN flag would fly over the Alamo are "horse hockey," by which he means nonsense. 

The rumor gained steam when it was posted this week to InfoWars, the website owned by nationally syndicated radio host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. It was picked up by other sites including Liberty News and Universal Free Press. And it appeared on forums like SurvivalistBoards and the Fal Files. But other bloggers were expressing concern about the UN designation at least since September.  

Tyler Pratt/KUT News

A citywide debate over whether lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender individuals should be included in San Antonio’s non-discrimination policy came to a fiery end on Thursday.

Before a crowd of hundreds at City Hall, the San Antonio City Council adopted an ordinance aimed at preventing discrimination against people because of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Charles Reed, Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System

The United States is returning to Mexico more than 4,000 architectural relics that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents have seized across the nation.

ICE says many of the items date from before European explorers reached the North American continent. The items include pre-Columbian stones used to grind corn and other grains, statues, figurines, copper hatchets and other artifacts.

flickr.com/gilgamesh

For the first time since it was written more than 170 years ago, the Travis letter will return the Alamo.

The famous letter—known to many as the “victory or death” letter—was written by William B. Travis to request reinforcements at the Alamo.

The Texas State Library and Archives Commission has controlled access to the letter since the early 1900’s and it has only been loaned out and displayed a few times.

flickr.com/omarriva

Starting in 2013, San Antonio will be one two cities debuting new vending machines aimed at providing healthier beverages to consumers.

According to the American Beverage Association, San Antonio and Chicago will feature the first line of soda vending machines labeled with a prominently labeled calorie count, along with flashing messages asking consumers to think before they drink.

The program is an attempt by the association to get ahead of  upcoming government regulations in the Affordable Care Act requiring calorie counts to become more visible. The idea is to make Americans pay closer attention to the calorie counts in what they consume, thereby improving heath (and lowering health care costs over time). The program comes after hamburger giant McDonald's began posting calorie counts on its menus. 

New machines will also feature electronic displays reminding customers that “Calories Count.” The displays will also stream slogans like “Check then Choose,” and “Try a Low-Calorie Beverage.”

U.S. Air Force

Another instructor at San Antonio’s embattled Lackland Air Force Base goes to trial today, as the new head of base training takes command.

The Associated Press reports the court martial of Staff Sgt. Jason Manko begins today. The AP writes Manko “is accused of sexual misconduct and trying to start a relationship with a recruit at the Air Force's headquarters for basic training.”

Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, some 90 miles southwest of Austin, oversees basic training for all new Air Force recruits. The base has been rocked by a string of trials involving sex and sexual assault between instructors and new recruits – scandals that have lead to several changes in command personnel.

On Friday, the San Antonio Express-News profiled the new leader of Lackland’s 737th Training Group: Col. Deborah Liddick.

U.S. Air Force

A colonel has stepped down and a sergeant’s court martial begins, all against the backdrop of an ongoing sex and sexual abuse scandal at San Antonio’s Lackland Air Force Base.

Col. Eric Axelbank, who oversaw the 37th Training Wing at Lackland, stepped down yesterday. Col. Mark Camerer now takes his place. The San Antonio Express-News notes that while the Axelbank’s departure was officially described as routine, the transition ceremony was “uncharacteristically closed to the media.”

It’s the second upper-echelon personnel change in as many months, following the August dismissal of Col. Glenn E. Palmer, who served as commander of Air Force Basic Military Training at the 737th Training Group at Lackland, the base that oversees training for all new Air Force recruits. The Express-News describes Palmer as having “led efforts to raise awareness about the problem” of sexual abuse and sex between recruits and instructors on the base.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera, Texas Tribune

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Call them idealistic, but the Texas delegates in town for this week’s Democratic National Convention are reading a lot into the selection of San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro to give Tuesday night’s keynote address.

Sure, it means a great deal for Castro’s own political aspirations: The Democratic Party's rising star is already one of the nation’s youngest mayors, a Stanford- and Harvard-educated 37-year-old Latino with an equally ambitious identical twin. Castro sat next to first lady Michelle Obama at the 2012 State of the Union address, another sign he was being primed for the national spotlight.

“They recognize Julián Castro is a potential statewide candidate — very likely to be the first one we’ve had in a long time in the very near future,” said Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa.

flickr.com/steveritchie

A San Antonio scientist looking for possible causes of autism is taking an unusual approach. University of Texas Health Science Center epidemiologist Dr. Raymond Palmer is using baby teeth to try to root out some answers.

The project is nicknamed “the tooth fairy studies” because to conduct his research, Dr. Palmer collects old, donated baby teeth from kids with and without autism. He is trying to discover how environmental effects  -- from as early as conception – can determine whether a child develops autistic traits.

flickr.com/petirrojo

The General Land Office is allowing beer, wine and liquor to be served outside of the Alamo – and for some, that decision isn’t going down easy.

A decision from the GLO allows for alcohol to be served during private events at Alamo Hall, on the grounds of the famous San Antonio mission that serves as a symbol of Texas independence.

The Daughters of the Republic of Texas serves as the Alamo’s longtime caretaker. It’s disputing the GLO’s decision. 

Update 10:50 a.m.: The San Antonio Police Department says the boy has been found and is "safe and sound."

Earlier: The San Antonio Police Department has issued an Amber Alert for a 3-year-old boy. Police say Gabriel Rivera was abducted by two people in a gold Ford Explorer.

The vehicle has Texas plates with the license plate number: 5-7-R-8-4-5-4.

The missing toddler was last seen yesterday. He is Hispanic with brown hair and brown eyes. He’s about 3-feet tall and weighs about 35 pounds.

Police believe he is in danger.

Photo by Daniel Reese for KUT News

Should schools be able to keep tabs on a student’s location?

Because Texas schools are funded per student in attendance, budgets hinge on the accuracy of morning roll call. The use of Radio Frequency Identification tags, or RFIDs, can certainly improve accuracy, but some consider them an invasion of privacy.

RFIDs are small beacons that both transmit and receive information. They’re often used to track product inventory. But some school districts have attached RFIDs to students’ photo ID cards, letting administrators know which students are on campus.

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