Category: Top Headlines

Second Capital Murder Trial Begins Jury Selection Monday

  Jury selection for the Captial Murder trial of Amber Hope Halford will begin Monday, Ocotober 17, 2016 at the Green Barn (Civic Center) in Fairfield, Texas. District Attorney Chris Martin expects to finish jury selection the following day at the Freestone County courthouse.  Evidence will be presented beginning Wednesday, Ocotober 19th. Halford is charged with Capital Murder for her alleged involvement in an incident occurring in March of 2015 that resulted in the death of Teague resident Douglas Carr Hurst. Stay tuned to The “Times” for complete news coverage of the...

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Guilty of Capital Murder: Lawson Abram Receives Life Sentence

 Lawson Lee Abram is found guilty of Capital Murder…                            QUIETLY CONFERRING WITH HIS ATTORNEY, Steve Keathley, is defendant Lawson Lee Abram (right) during his Capital Murder trial held last week, October 3-7, 2016. An audio confession, along with a recovered cell phone picture of the defendant holding a pistol, believed to have been used during the home invasion, were among the evidence presented to the jury returning a verdict of “guilty” in last week’s Capital Murder trial of The State of Texas vs. Lawson Lee Abram. After a week-long trial, the jury began deliberations around 4:00 p.m. on Friday, October 7, 2016 and presented their verdict a couple of hours later. The jury chose to convict Abram of Capital Murder. Had they not found him guilty of Capital Murder, the next considerations would have been either Murder or Burglary of a Habitation, both of which are lesser charges. During the sentencing phase, Judge Patrick Simmons of the 87th District Court states, “My only sentencing option for Capital Murder is Life without Parole.” This is the first of three Capital Murder trials stemming from an incident on March 9, 2015 that resulted in the shooting death of homeowner Douglas Carr Hurst of Teague, Texas. Doug married his wife, Joy, on Tuesday, March 3, 2015 following six years...

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Fairfield High School Crowns Homecoming Queen

 Fairfield High School names Homecoming Queen and Court…              CROWNED HOMECOMING QUEEN 2016 is Fairfield High School senior, Vanessa Hidalgo. Here she is being crowned by 2015 Queen, Jocelynn Johnson, as FHS Principal Von Wade, and Vanessa’s father, David Hidalgo, watch with pride.   FHS Homecoming Queen’s Court includes these beautiful senior ladies:  Mikaela Stamper, the newly crowned Vanessa Hidalgo, Abby Teer and Cali Gawryszewski.  (Photo by Melissa...

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School Alert! Threat to Wortham ISD Neutralized

A juvenile, whose identity has not been released, was taken into custody Thursday, October 6, 2016 after making threats to Wortham Independent School District via social media. Wortham’s Chief of Police Kelly Butler states that, after school hours on Thursday, he became aware of an individual threatening to bring a gun to the campus, and was provided screenshots of the menacing post. The juvenile was quickly identified and had been detained in the Groesbeck Detention Center, although according to Chief Butler, it is undetermined what course of action will be taken against the individual at this point. The Wortham Police Department issued the following statement regarding the incident on their Facebook page Friday morning: “SCHOOL ALERT!!!!!! On Thursday 10/06/2016 the Wortham Police Department was notified of a possible threat made towards the Wortham Independent School District. This threat was in the form of an individual bringing a gun to school. We have been investigating this potential threat with cooperation from WISD. The individual who made the threat is in custody due to the nature of the threat. The investigation is ongoing, but we do not believe there is any credible threat to the students or teachers at the Wortham schools at this time. Please do not be alarmed if you see a patrol car at the school tomorrow. We are still finalizing our investigation into this matter.” Wortham ISD...

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County Votes to Limit Paid Vacation

With only three Commissioners in attendance, a final vote of 2 to 1 decided the issue of paid vacation allowed when an employee leaves their position, during Commissioner Court on October 5, 2016.  From henceforth, paid vacation will be limited to 40 hours. “The issue is to encourage people to take their vacation time,” stated County Judge Linda Grant. Judge Grant went on to explain that, when long-time employees continue to accumulate vacation hours without taking off, it creates a situation where Department Heads might be required to wait up to 5 weeks before they can hire a new employee.  This is because the former employee has to take off all their vacation time before they can be officially removed from the personnel record. Two Justices of the Peace, Theresa Farris (Pct. 1) and Cinnamon Archibald (Pct. 3) have been vocal in their opposition.  They believe the recent action is being taken because of a situation in one department, namely the Sheriff’s Office, who recently lost several jailers in a short time span. “Why should other offices be affected, who have no problems?” asked JP Farris. Commissioner Luke Ward, Sr. (Pct. 1) made a motion to keep the policy as is.  The motion died for lack of a second. Commissioner Bodie Emmons (Pct. 3) made a motion to limit paid vacation to a maximum of 40 hours.  The motion...

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