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Latest from Andrea Ball

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Texas day care operator’s lies exposed in child death trial
 Holly Harrison’s Georgetown day care seemed ideal. Her home was clean and full of toys. Parents believed she had a full-time employee to help with the children; that she watched just six kids; that she monitored the infants’ every moment, even while they slept. But the parents learned that none of that was true after 5-month-old...

Posted: 10 days ago

Holly Harrison’s Georgetown day care seemed ideal. Her home was clean and full of toys. Parents believed she had a full-time employee to help with the children; that she watched just six kids; that she monitored the infants’ every moment, even while they slept. But the parents learned that none of that was true after 5-month-old...
Day care owner gets 20-year sentence in infant’s death
 A day care facility owner who waited at least 14 minutes to call 911 for a suffocating infant was sentenced to 20 years in prison Thursday afternoon. Holly Harrison, who ran All About Kids day care, pleaded guilty earlier this month to tampering with evidence and no contest to injury to a child. Williamson County state District Court...

9:10 PM Thursday, Apr. 19, 2018

A day care facility owner who waited at least 14 minutes to call 911 for a suffocating infant was sentenced to 20 years in prison Thursday afternoon. Holly Harrison, who ran All About Kids day care, pleaded guilty earlier this month to tampering with evidence and no contest to injury to a child. Williamson County state District Court...
Day care operator sentenced to 20 years in infant death case
 Update: Holly Harrison has been sentenced to 20 years in the death of 5-month-old Brody Havins Earlier: The sentencing hearing for a woman charged in the day care death of a 5-month-old boy will likely wrap up today. Prosecutors concluded their case against Holly Harrison — who pleaded earlier this month no contest to injury to...

3:36 PM Thursday, Apr. 19, 2018

Update: Holly Harrison has been sentenced to 20 years in the death of 5-month-old Brody Havins Earlier: The sentencing hearing for a woman charged in the day care death of a 5-month-old boy will likely wrap up today. Prosecutors concluded their case against Holly Harrison — who pleaded earlier this month no contest to injury to...
Father in day care death case: ‘We’re still trying to cope’
 The last time David Havins saw his infant son alive, Brody was in his crib, kicking his feet and smiling. It was early on Jan. 13, 2016, and Havins was getting ready to leave his Georgetown home and go to his job doing electrical work in South Austin. But before he left, he stopped by Brody’s crib. He kissed the baby on the head and...

11:55 PM Monday, Apr. 16, 2018

The last time David Havins saw his infant son alive, Brody was in his crib, kicking his feet and smiling. It was early on Jan. 13, 2016, and Havins was getting ready to leave his Georgetown home and go to his job doing electrical work in South Austin. But before he left, he stopped by Brody’s crib. He kissed the baby on the head and...
Father in day care death case: 'We cried for a good hour sitting on the floor'
 The last time David Havins saw his infant son alive, Brody was in his crib, kicking his feet and smiling like he always did. It was early in the morning of Jan. 13, 2016, and Havins was getting ready to leave his Georgetown home and head to his job doing electrical work in South Austin. But before he left, he stopped by Brody’s crib...

2:54 PM Monday, Apr. 16, 2018

The last time David Havins saw his infant son alive, Brody was in his crib, kicking his feet and smiling like he always did. It was early in the morning of Jan. 13, 2016, and Havins was getting ready to leave his Georgetown home and head to his job doing electrical work in South Austin. But before he left, he stopped by Brody’s crib...
City’s response to Austin bomber renews tension over racial disparities
 Gilbert Rivera feels like his East Austin community was failed by the way the city handled Austin’s serial bombings. Failed by the way the police responded to the first bombing, which killed a black man; by what he sees as a lack of communication with the neighborhoods attacked; by the initial refusal of law enforcement to call bomber...

8:47 PM Thursday, Mar. 29, 2018

Gilbert Rivera feels like his East Austin community was failed by the way the city handled Austin’s serial bombings. Failed by the way the police responded to the first bombing, which killed a black man; by what he sees as a lack of communication with the neighborhoods attacked; by the initial refusal of law enforcement to call bomber...
City’s response to Austin bomber renews tension over racial disparities
 Gilbert Rivera feels like his East Austin community was failed by the way the city handled Austin’s serial bombings. Failed by the way the police responded to the first bombing, which killed a black man; by what he sees as a lack of communication with the neighborhoods attacked; by the initial refusal of law enforcement to call bomber...

8:44 AM Thursday, Mar. 29, 2018

Gilbert Rivera feels like his East Austin community was failed by the way the city handled Austin’s serial bombings. Failed by the way the police responded to the first bombing, which killed a black man; by what he sees as a lack of communication with the neighborhoods attacked; by the initial refusal of law enforcement to call bomber...
‘There was blood everywhere,’ son testifies about Judge Julie Kocurek’s shooting
 Will Kocurek, the son of Judge Julie Kocurek, testified Monday that he was driving the car she rode in when a gunmen opened fire on her. Will Kocurek was a sophomore at Austin High School at the time of the shooting. Now he’s 18. It was a Friday night, and Will and Julie Kocurek were in the front seats of the car as they headed home...

12:11 AM Monday, Mar. 26, 2018

Will Kocurek, the son of Judge Julie Kocurek, testified Monday that he was driving the car she rode in when a gunmen opened fire on her. Will Kocurek was a sophomore at Austin High School at the time of the shooting. Now he’s 18. It was a Friday night, and Will and Julie Kocurek were in the front seats of the car as they headed home...
Explosion at Austin Goodwill brought bomb scare, new donation policies
 When an explosion was reported at a Goodwill store in Southwest Austin on Tuesday night, people immediately thought it was yet another package from the serial bomber who has terrorized Austin for weeks. National and local media swarmed to the scene on Brodie Lane, about four miles south of the FedEx store linked to the bomber earlier that...

5:09 PM Wednesday, Mar. 21, 2018

When an explosion was reported at a Goodwill store in Southwest Austin on Tuesday night, people immediately thought it was yet another package from the serial bomber who has terrorized Austin for weeks. National and local media swarmed to the scene on Brodie Lane, about four miles south of the FedEx store linked to the bomber earlier that...
Over 24 years in office, Rep. Dukes went from ‘relentless’ to absent
 A serious car wreck, felony corruption charges and pressure to resign from members of her own party were not enough to end the two-decade political career of state Rep. Dawnna Dukes. But Dukes was eventually done in by growing discontent from her constituents, who voted resoundingly in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for new leadership...

1:04 AM Thursday, Mar. 08, 2018

A serious car wreck, felony corruption charges and pressure to resign from members of her own party were not enough to end the two-decade political career of state Rep. Dawnna Dukes. But Dukes was eventually done in by growing discontent from her constituents, who voted resoundingly in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for new leadership...
In 24 years in office, Rep. Dukes went from ‘relentless’ to absent
 A serious car wreck, felony corruption charges and pressure to resign from members of her own party were not enough to end the two-decade political career of state Rep. Dawnna Dukes. But Dukes was eventually done in by growing discontent from her constituents, who voted resoundingly in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for new leadership...

12:53 AM Thursday, Mar. 08, 2018

A serious car wreck, felony corruption charges and pressure to resign from members of her own party were not enough to end the two-decade political career of state Rep. Dawnna Dukes. But Dukes was eventually done in by growing discontent from her constituents, who voted resoundingly in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for new leadership...
Women describe 14 years of Austin Opera maestro’s lewd talk, touches
 In the weeks since Austin Opera’s conductor was fired amid allegations of harassment, seven women have come forward to describe a culture of permissiveness that they say allowed Richard Buckley to touch women inappropriately and engage in lewd talk because he was a star. The women told the American-Statesman that Buckley — who...

6:48 PM Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018

In the weeks since Austin Opera’s conductor was fired amid allegations of harassment, seven women have come forward to describe a culture of permissiveness that they say allowed Richard Buckley to touch women inappropriately and engage in lewd talk because he was a star. The women told the American-Statesman that Buckley — who...
Women describe 14 years of Austin Opera maestro’s lewd talk, touches
 In the weeks since Austin Opera’s conductor was fired amid allegations of harassment, seven women have come forward to describe a culture of permissiveness that they say allowed Richard Buckley to touch women inappropriately and engage in lewd talk because he was a star. The women told the American-Statesman that Buckley — who...

6:47 PM Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018

In the weeks since Austin Opera’s conductor was fired amid allegations of harassment, seven women have come forward to describe a culture of permissiveness that they say allowed Richard Buckley to touch women inappropriately and engage in lewd talk because he was a star. The women told the American-Statesman that Buckley — who...
Judge calls out Texas foster care chief as teen runs away for 5th time
 An Abilene judge has ordered the leader of Texas Child Protective Services to show up in court Wednesday to explain why his agency can’t keep a 14-year-old girl from repeatedly running away from foster care. Department of Family and Protective Services Commissioner Hank Whitman — who runs Child Protective Services — has...

9:38 PM Monday, Jan. 29, 2018

An Abilene judge has ordered the leader of Texas Child Protective Services to show up in court Wednesday to explain why his agency can’t keep a 14-year-old girl from repeatedly running away from foster care. Department of Family and Protective Services Commissioner Hank Whitman — who runs Child Protective Services — has...
Judge calls out Texas foster care chief as teen runs away for 5th time
 An Abilene judge has ordered the leader of Texas Child Protective Services to show up in court Wednesday to explain why his agency can’t keep a 14-year-old girl from repeatedly running away from foster care. Department of Family and Protective Services Commissioner Hank Whitman — who runs Child Protective Services — has...

9:34 PM Monday, Jan. 29, 2018

An Abilene judge has ordered the leader of Texas Child Protective Services to show up in court Wednesday to explain why his agency can’t keep a 14-year-old girl from repeatedly running away from foster care. Department of Family and Protective Services Commissioner Hank Whitman — who runs Child Protective Services — has...
New APD policy emphasizes defusion, alternatives to using force
 Austin police have enacted a new policy that requires officers to first try to tamp down a volatile situation before turning to more aggressive means, including using their guns, batons and Tasers. The move comes amid a national effort among law enforcement aimed at curtailing violent clashes between officers and suspects. According to a...

9:38 PM Friday, Jan. 19, 2018

Austin police have enacted a new policy that requires officers to first try to tamp down a volatile situation before turning to more aggressive means, including using their guns, batons and Tasers. The move comes amid a national effort among law enforcement aimed at curtailing violent clashes between officers and suspects. According to a...
New Austin police policy emphasizes alternatives to using force
 Austin police have enacted a new policy that requires officers to first try to tamp down a volatile situation before turning to more aggressive means, including using their guns, batons or Tasers. The move comes amid a national effort among law enforcement aimed at curtailing violent clashes between officers and suspects. According to a new...

9:16 PM Friday, Jan. 19, 2018

Austin police have enacted a new policy that requires officers to first try to tamp down a volatile situation before turning to more aggressive means, including using their guns, batons or Tasers. The move comes amid a national effort among law enforcement aimed at curtailing violent clashes between officers and suspects. According to a new...
State lawyer says Greg Kelley could prove actual innocence in sex assault case
 A lawyer appointed by the highest criminal court in Texas has lodged concerns over an effort to overturn the sexual assault conviction of a former Leander High School football star, telling the judges that allegations of poor policing and inadequate legal representation aren’t enough to exonerate Greg Kelley. But the Court of Criminal...

11:29 PM Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018

A lawyer appointed by the highest criminal court in Texas has lodged concerns over an effort to overturn the sexual assault conviction of a former Leander High School football star, telling the judges that allegations of poor policing and inadequate legal representation aren’t enough to exonerate Greg Kelley. But the Court of Criminal...
ACC staff pays off tuition debt for once homeless teen
 Austin Community College wants Lyric Wardlow back in school. Members of the ACC Cabinet, campus operations and public affairs departments pooled donations and paid off $332 in Pell grant debt that Wardlow owed when she needed to drop out of classes after a family member died. Now the once-homeless teen can restart school with a clean slate...

9:15 PM Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017

Austin Community College wants Lyric Wardlow back in school. Members of the ACC Cabinet, campus operations and public affairs departments pooled donations and paid off $332 in Pell grant debt that Wardlow owed when she needed to drop out of classes after a family member died. Now the once-homeless teen can restart school with a clean slate...
As Texas special education overhaul stalls, TEA answers don’t add up
 At 5 p.m. on a Friday, the Texas Education Agency abruptly announced that it had pulled the plug on a special education data-mining project it had defended for months. Parents and advocacy groups had too many concerns over the $4.4 million, no-bid contract, TEA Commissioner Mike Morath said. He promised to review the agency’s contracting...

2:47 PM Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017

At 5 p.m. on a Friday, the Texas Education Agency abruptly announced that it had pulled the plug on a special education data-mining project it had defended for months. Parents and advocacy groups had too many concerns over the $4.4 million, no-bid contract, TEA Commissioner Mike Morath said. He promised to review the agency’s contracting...
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