AUSTIN ROCK ATTACKS
Austin police seek person who threw rocks at cars
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Austin police are searching for a person who they say has been hurling large rocks at cars on the interstate.
Police said Wednesday that at least two people have been hit during four incidents on Interstate 35 between 2-5 a.m.
A June 14 attack left a man with critical injuries on his face and skull when a rock went through his windshield. Police say the man has brain damage and will potentially need care for the rest of his life.
Three other incidents were reported Sunday. Police say a woman suffered minor injuries.
Police are asking for the public's help to identify the person.
Sheriff asks for help in probe of family's slaying
HOUSTON (AP) - Authorities are asking for the public's help in their investigation of the slayings six months ago of a family of four, including two children, at their suburban Houston home.
Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia said at a news conference Wednesday that his agency continues seeking those responsible for the fatal shootings, but investigators are asking anybody with information to come forward.
Crime Stoppers is offering a $70,000 reward for information on the deaths of 50-year-old Maoye Sun, his 49-year-old wife Mei Xie and their 7- and 9-year-old sons.
Garcia says authorities are still trying to determine a motive for the slayings.
Deputies discovered the bodies Jan. 30 in the family's Cypress home. Investigators say the husband was last seen alive leaving work on Jan. 24.
WILDLIFE WORKER DIES-CARBON MONOXIDE
Texas worker dies, another injured from poison gas
SAN MARCOS, Texas (AP) - San Marcos fire officials say two incidents of carbon monoxide exposure have killed one worker and hospitalized another.
Fire Marshal Ken Bell says the separate incidents happened within a 12-hour period spanning Tuesday and Wednesday.
Fifty-seven-year-old Rob Schmid died about 15 feet below ground late Tuesday afternoon in a chamber at a state-run fish hatchery. He was exposed to the gas while working on an underground pump. Bell says the colorless, odorless gas was at five times the limit that humans can handle.
The second incident happened early Wednesday morning at a private construction site across town. Bell says a worker was operating a machine in a confined space. The unnamed worker is being treated in a hypobaric chamber at an area hospital.
GALVESTON DRUG ARRESTS
Police: 14 arrested in Galveston drug bust
GALVESTON, Texas (AP) - Galveston Police say they've arrested 14 people on felony drug charges after an extensive narcotics investigation.
A city police spokesman told The Galveston County Daily News on Wednesday there is a growing cocaine and methamphetamine problem in the city. He says the seven-month, multi-agency investigation resulted in 21 indictments. Arrest warrants have been issued for the five Galveston men who weren't detained in a police sweep Tuesday night.
The spokesman says law enforcement used undercover officers, recording devices and video cameras. He says some of the people charged have gang affiliations or connections to drug traffickers in Mexico.
The names of the people arrested have not been released.
McDonald's ordered to pay $27M in deaths of teens
BRYAN, Texas (AP) - McDonald's says it'll appeal a $27 million Central Texas jury verdict against it in the deaths of two teenagers in a traffic crash.
The teens died in the crash while en route to a hospital after a fight outside a McDonald's restaurant in College Station in 2012.
A release Wednesday from the attorney representing the families of 18-year-old Denton James Ward of Flower Mound and 19-year-old Lauren Bailey Crisp of Dripping Springs says McDonald's lax security led to their deaths.
The two were with another couple when they stopped at the restaurant. The young men were beaten in the parking lot. Their girlfriends tried to get them to a hospital but the driver ran a red light and was hit by a pickup, killing Crisp.
SEARCH DRONES-FAA DISPUTE
Texas search group resumes drone use
HOUSTON (AP) - A Texas-based group that had been embroiled in a legal fight over the use of drones in its searches for missing persons has resumed utilizing the unmanned aircraft.
Texas EquuSearch began using a drone Wednesday in its search in Livingston in East Texas for a 57-year-old man missing since July 9.
The flight is the first since the group received a favorable appeals court ruling earlier this month.
The group had stopped using drones in February after it received what it described as an order from the Federal Aviation Administration to stop the flights.
Texas EquuSearch sued the FAA, and an appeals court ruled earlier this month that the FAA warning to the group had no legal consequences.
An FAA spokesman declined to comment Wednesday.
Feds to show off immigrant family detention
KARNES CITY, Texas (AP) - Federal immigration officials are to give a tour Thursday of a South Texas detention center where they plan to house women who enter the United States illegally with their children.
The Karnes County Civil Detention Center in Karnes City is being converted after being used to house male immigrants. The contract with the private company operating the prison was changed earlier this month to hold families in expedited removal proceedings.
Illegal immigration in South Texas has surged in recent months, especially children travelling alone and parents bringing their children from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.
Lacking family detention centers, the government has been releasing so-called "family units" with notices to appear before immigration authorities when they reach their destinations.
Karnes City is about 50 miles southeast of San Antonio.
Obese Doberman rescued in Texas, given new diet
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - San Antonio animal care officials say an obese Doberman taken in last week is being transferred to Conroe for further care.
A spokeswoman for the city's Animal Care Services said Wednesday that the dog named Bear weighs in at 147 pounds. That's twice the size of an average Doberman.
Caregivers say he looks miserable and is possibly depressed.
A Doberman rescue organization took in the dog Friday morning near Fort Worth. He has a microchip, but the chip isn't registered.
They have Bear on joint supplement and thyroid medication. He's also dealing with high cholesterol.
The spokeswoman says caregivers will start by taking Bear "on some very short walks." She says he will be fed four small meals a day of premium food.
The dog's goal weight is 80 pounds.
REPURPOSED SMUGGLER TRAIL
South Texas town turns drug path into bike trail
RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas (AP) - Officials in a Texas border city have repurposed a suspected drug and human trafficking path as a bike trail.
Rio Grande City Mayor Ruben Villarreal told KRGV-TV on Wednesday he hopes the municipal bike path will help curb illegal activity.
The trail runs along the Rio Grande river less than a mile from the center of town. It winds through cactus and mesquite trees and is now adorned with city signage.
Villarreal says a U.S. Border Patrol official encouraged the transformation. He says the presence of more pedestrians along the path will encourage people doing illegal activities to look for other areas.
A bicyclist tells the station he will take his cell phone and possibly a group of friends when using the bike trail.
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