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Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Heidy J. Guillen of Rockwall is in the custody of Rockwall Police as they investigate the death of her 2-year-old daughter, Jade. The 2-year-old child sustained potentially life-threatening injuries Thursday, November 20th, and was transported to Children's Medical Center of Dallas where she was placed on life support systems. She died from her injuries Saturday, November 22nd. The child's mother was taken into custody by Rockwall Police on unrelated charges, but Public Information Officer Sgt. Aaron McGrew yesterday said she has been identified as a person of interest in the child's death, and the department's investigation is continuing.
Speed limits that were reduced in 2001 in an effort to improve air quality may be increased early next year when the Texas Transportation Commission again meets. A speed limit of 70 is proposed for Spur 557, U. S. Hwy 80 from Dallas County to Spur 557 and Interstate Hwy 20 from Dallas County to Spur 557. The speed limit for Interstate Hwy 20 east of Spur 557 is proposed to increase to 75. The speed limit for Highway 175 in Kaufman County is also proposed to be increased to 70 mph. The Texas Department of Transportation says the proposed speeds are more in-line with what motorists are comfortable driving.
Tax collections are about normal for this time of year according to Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood. At Monday's meeting of the commissioner's court, Kaufman County Tax Assessor Collector Tonya Ratcliff reported collections of $672,543 in current year's taxes and $109,557 in delinquent taxes during the current fiscal year. The commissioners met in regular session yesterday, and also approved a $175,000 indigent defense grant request, which will pay for the defense of those charged with a crime in Kaufman County and who are unable to afford an attorney. You can hear a complete report of that meeting on our news at 10:30 this morning, and following the USA network news at noon today.
Monday, November 24, 2014
A citation for careless operation of a vehicle issued to Andrew Hardman following a one-vehicle accident near Monroe, Louisiana in which 5 members of his family were killed, was dismissed over the weekend by Louisiana's Fourth Judicial District Attorney Jerry Jones. Hardman was driving a Chevrolet Tahoe eastbound on Interstate 20 on a vacation trip to Disney World in Florida when he admitted he fell asleep and struck the median, causing the vehicle to overturn. Six members of his family were thrown from the vehicle, five died at the scene including his father, Michael Hardman who was a second grade teacher in Terrell, and his mother Trudi, a teacher in Wills Point. Jones said, when dismissing the citation, the young man has been punished enough and there is no need to add to his pain. A celebration of the lives of the family members who died in the accident will be held Wednesday at noon at the Lakeshore Church in Rockwall, with the family receiving friends beginning at 10 o'clock.
A head-on collision in the 1100 block of West Moore Avenue late Saturday resulted in the injury of one driver and a second man being arrested for assaulting the other driver involved. Around 10 p.m. Saturday a westbound SUV struck an eastbound sedan, and both vehicles were damaged by flames. Occupants of both vehicles escaped the fire, however the driver of the sedan was injured and was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital for what was reported as non-life-threatening injuries. The driver of the SUV was standing in an adjacent gas station parking lot when an alleged acquaintance of the injured driver reportedly walked up and punched the SUV driver in the face. The acauaintance was arrested by Terrell Police for assault. Both vehicled sustained heavy damage from the impact and fire.
Area police report an increase in vehicle thefts during the last few weeks, with the target vehicles being earlier model Ford F250 and F350 trucks, primarily around 2000 to 2005 models. Police say to be sure vehicles are locked and parked in a well-lit area when left unattended. Anything unusual noticed at night, such as dogs barking, or anything that seems to be out of the ordinary, Police say to call so the situation can be investigated, and possibly prevent another theft.
Five individuals were indicted Friday by the Kaufman County Grand Jury in connection with theft rings operating in the Terrell and Forney area. Indicted for engaging in organized criminal activity were Lakai Robinson, Joshua McKinnies and Thaddeus Stewart, all students at Trinity Valley Community College in Athens, who were arrested last month for burglarizing vehicles in the Forney area. Also indicted were Zachary Taylor and Brandon Morgan for theft of a firearm, burglary of a habitation, and three counds each of engaging in organized criminal activity. Taylor was also indicted on one count of unauthorized use of a vehicle. Four other men were arrested last month in connection with the thefts.
An exciting season for the Terrell Tigers came to an end Friday night when the Tigers lost to the Frisco Heritage High School's Coyotes 43-20 in the Class 5A, Division II, Region II playoff game played at Wildcat-Ram Stadium in Dallas. This was the first time since 2009 that the Tigers made it to the playoffs, and even longer since they made it beyond the first round. Friday night, the Tigers were the first to score early in the first quarter, but the Coyotes took advantage of turnovers with good field position to take a 33 to 6 lead by the end of the first half. Terrell outscored the Coyotes in the second half, with two touchdowns, but it was not enough to overcome the first half deficit.