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Crystal Beach Murder Investigation Coming Up Empty

Posted: 07/25/2007 - GALVESTON, Texas — Authorities investigating the rape and murder of a 28-year-old mother on a popular stretch of beach near Galveston said they need the public's help to jump-start their stalled case. Bridgette Lynn Gearen disappeared late July 14, around the time she and some friends staying at a beach house were leaving to take a late-night drive, officials said. Campers found her beaten and strangled body in the Crystal Beach surf early the next morning.

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Man Ignored Evacuation Order, Asked to Pay for Rescue

Posted: 07/25/2007 - WEATHERFORD, Texas — A man who shot himself in the leg while stranded at home during flooding is being asked to reimburse the county for his swift-water rescue because he ignored evacuation orders. Parker County commissioners voted Monday to bill Edward Musick for $1,573.68, the estimated rescue cost.

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State Auditor Employee Accused of Bribery

Posted: 07/25/2007 - RICHMOND, Texas (AP) - An auditor for the state who's accused of seeking a bribe in Fort Bend County has been fired. Thirty-six-year-old Alfonso Gutierrez Jimenez was arraigned in Richmond on a bribery charge. Texas Rangers Tuesday received information that Jimenez solicited a $5,000 bribe in exchange for reducing a business owner's tax liability during an audit.

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Texas Cattle Ranchers Worry Rain Will Hurt Hay Quality

Posted: 07/25/2007 - LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - Texas ranchers, for two years, yearned for greener pastures. Now with the drought behind them, ranchers and hay producers in some parts of the state are hampered by frequent rain that's keeping them out of fields.

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Ex-Amarillo Teacher Admits to Sexual Assault of a Child

Posted: 07/25/2007 - AMARILLO, Texas (AP) - A former Amarillo High School teacher must serve probation after pleading guilty to sexual assault of a child. Martha Lynn Perry was 47 when she was indicted in December of 2004 after being accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a student.

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Testimony Today in Case of Muslim Charity Accused of Aiding Terrorists

Posted: 07/25/2007 - DALLAS (AP) - Testimony begins today in the Dallas trial of a group that was once the nation's largest Muslim charity. The Richardson-based Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development and five leaders are charged with aiding terrorists, conspiracy and money laundering.

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Johnson Executed Over 1990 Double Slaying

Posted: 07/25/2007 - HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) - Convicted killer Lonnie Earl Johnson has been executed in Huntsville over a 1990 double slaying. Johnson was condemned for the shooting deaths of two Houston-area teenagers who'd given him a ride. The victims were 16-year-old Sean Fulk Schulz and 17-year-old Leroy McCaffrey Junior.

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Trinity River Bank Landslide in Grand Prairie

Posted: 07/25/2007 - GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) - Crews are working to repair a wastewater pipeline that broke in Grand Prairie when part of the Trinity River bank fell into the water. The Trinity River Authority has begun repairs. The break was discovered Tuesday.

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Explosions Prompt Evacuations in Dallas

Updated: 07/25/2007 - A series of gas explosions near downtown Dallas is prompting officials to evacuate a half-mile radius and close two vital interstates through downtown.

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Controversial Colorado Professor Fired

Posted: 07/24/2007 - A University of Colorado professor whose essay compared some Nine-Eleven victims to a Nazi leader is out of a job. The university's governing board has voted to fire professor Ward Churchill.

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Other Bryan Council Business Includes Senior Tax Freeze

Updated: 07/24/2007 - A senior tax freeze in Bryan is now on the ballot. The city council approved the second reading of an ordinance Tuesday calling for the election, which will take place November 6 along with other constitutional amendments.

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Morrow Arrives in Bryan to Council Approval

Updated: 07/25/2007 - Tyrone Morrow got the official thumbs up from Bryan's city council. The new choice for police chief was on hand Tuesday to be presented to the council. He was later approved in a vote.

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Local Teens Fly High in Aviation Program

Updated: 07/24/2007 - The Aggie Flying Club hosted a day-long informational for members of the Boys and Girls Club of the Brazos Valley to learn more about different career opportunities available in aviation.

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Florida Group Buys Freebirds Restaurant Chain

Updated: 07/24/2007 - It's a monster of a sale as a College Station-born restaurant chain now has a new owner. Orlando, Florida-based Tavistock Group announced Tuesday it has completed a buyout of the 19-store Freebirds chain.

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Fire School Set to Put on Blazing Show

Updated: 07/24/2007 - One school plans to light up the skies Wednesday night. The Texas Municipal Fire Training School will conduct "night burns" to showcase some firefighters' skills as they battle large, controlled infernos.

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Memory of Hotel Drowning Victim Will Live On

Updated: 07/24/2007 - Family and friends are remembering a 12-year-old boy who drowned at the Plaza Hotel in College Station late Monday. The boy, Michael Ross of Fairfield, was attending the Missionary Baptist General Convention of Texas.

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TxDOT Repaving Stretches of Three Brazos County Roads

Updated: 07/24/2007 - The first of three major Tex-DOT repaving projects in Brazos County got underway Tuesday. For three days this week, you can expect delays along county highways as crews work to repave the roadway.

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"Wrongful Birth" Lawsuit Nets $21 Million

Posted: 07/24/2007 - (AP) In what is being called a "wrongful birth" case, a jury awarded more than $21 million Monday to a couple who claimed a doctor misdiagnosed a severe birth defect in their son, leading them to have a second child with similar problems.

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No Indictment in Katrina Hospital Deaths

Posted: 07/24/2007 - NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A grand jury Tuesday declined to indict Dr. Anna Pou, the surgeon accused of killing four seriously ill patients in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Pou and two nurses were arrested last summer after Attorney General Charles Foti's investigation concluded they gave four patients a "lethal cocktail" at Memorial Medical Center amid the chaotic conditions that followed the August 2005 storm.

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Texas Lottery May Consider Offering a Raffle

Posted: 07/24/2007 - AUSTIN — The chairman of the Texas Lottery Commission has asked the state attorney general to study whether it would be legal to add a raffle to its array of games. Raffles offer better odds of winning than other kinds of games because a limited number of tickets are sold and there can be no duplicate winners. Twenty-seven states already offer raffles with mixed success.

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District Wants Four-Day School Week

Posted: 07/24/2007 - DALLAS — The Lancaster school district has asked the Texas Education Agency for clearance to implement a four-day schedule for the upcoming school year. The superintendent for the 6,000-student district, which is located south of Dallas, argues the plan would boost academics and could save as much as $1.9 million, helping to close a funding deficit in this year's budget. But some parents have protested the idea over concerns about the cost of child care on Fridays and unsupervised students getting into trouble.

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Army Major Accused of Taking Millions in Bribes

Posted: 07/24/2007 - SAN ANTONIO — An Army major has been arrested on charges that he took $9.6 million in kickbacks and anticipated receiving $5.4 million more for rigging military supply contracts. Federal authorities arrested Maj. John Cockerham, a contracting and procurement officer, and his wife, Melissa, on Monday as they returned from Louisiana to Fort Sam Houston.

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