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New squad will take up hundreds of Austin’s delayed rape investigations

Travis County deputies ID father killed by son in weekend shooting


TRAVIS COUNTY

Father shot, killed by son ID’d

The Travis County sheriff’s office have named Leonard Coolidge Sauls III, 45, as the man killed by his son in a shooting near Manor early Sunday morning.

Sauls was driving his sons, who officials said were intoxicated, from his house back to their home in Round Rock when one son who was sitting in the back seat, 23-year-old Tabyes Sauls, pulled a gun — described as a .40 caliber Smith and Wesson — and fired, investigators claimed in court papers filed Monday.

The bullet hit Leonard Sauls in the head and sent the car off the road, officials said. Tabyes and his brother, Aerron Sauls, walked away from the scene, they said.

According to an arrest affidavit, Tabyes told investigators that he drank alcohol and took a Xanax earlier that night and “did not know what the reason why he shot Leonard.”

He is currently booked into Travis County Jail and charged with first degree murder. His bail has been set at $100,000.

The shooting on the 11000 block of Gregg Lane marked the end to a chaotic night at the Sauls’ residence.

Leonard’s wife, Joan Houston, demanded the sons leave the house after she arrived home and found them drunk and waving guns around her small children, investigators said.

When Leonard failed to return home or answer his phone, she and a relative set off in search for her husband, following the path he usually took when going to his sons’ place.

The pair discovered Leonard’s car in a field shortly around 3:15 a.m — his body, face-down, next to it.

Paramedics pronounced him dead just after 3:35 a.m., investigators said.

— Nolan Hicks, American-Statesman

CEDAR PARK

Woman dies of April crash injuries

A woman involved in a April 24 wreck in Cedar Park died on May 3, according to the Cedar Park Police Department.

Raquel Kocher, 56, died at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center from injuries she received in a collision that she caused, police said. It happened as she was pulling out of a private driveway in a 2013 Hyundai and attempting to turn east on Whitestone Boulevard, said Tara Long, a police spokeswoman.

Kocher pulled in front of an oncoming 2008 Dodge Ram, police said.

Officers were notified at 6:27 p.m. April 24 about the collision in the 900 block of West Whitestone Boulevard.

The driver of the Dodge was taken to the hospital for medical care and later released, according to police.

— Claire Osborn, American-Statesman

COPANO BAY

Missing Austin fisherman last seen Saturday

An Austin resident has been missing in Copano Bay – about 20 miles north of Corpus Christi – since Saturday afternoon, a relative of his said Monday.

Around 2:30 p.m. Saturday, a fisherman saw 54-year-old Kevin Farrell’s empty boat adrift near Newcomb Point in Copano Bay, said Farrell’s brother-in-law Hamp Rogers. The fisherman found Farrell’s cellphone on board.

Austin resident Kevin Farrell, 54, has been missing in Copano Bay since Saturday afternoon. His grandchildren call him ‘Poppy,’ family said. Photo courtesy of Hamp Rogers

As of 3 p.m. Monday, a search team had not yet found Farrell, Rogers said. Dozens of volunteers and several aircraft and boats, along with the U.S. Coast Guard, are participating in a search.

“We still don’t have any idea what happened,” Rogers said. “He was an experienced fisherman, and the weather was fine.”

A GoFundMe has been created to help the family and the search.

“Frankly, it’s a recovery search at this point, and the family’s resigned to that,” Rogers said. “The grief comes in waves, as you might expect. Everyone’s very tired, sunburned, windburned, but the support of the community has been extraordinary, making what’s a very difficult time easier.”

— Katie Hall, American-Statesman



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