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    Texas fires coach Barnes after 17 years

    Texas has fired coach Rick Barnes after 17 seasons, people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press.Texas athletic director Steve Patterson made the decision after meeting with Barnes on Saturday, according to the people who requested anonymity because the school wasn't expected to make a formal announcement before Sunday....READ MORE

    TOP STORIES

    Orange man leads authorities on 2-county high speed pursuit, reaching speeds of 120 mph

    Police identify driver who led them on police chase as 32-year-old Ronald Wayne Rice of Orange.  They say he's accused of robberies in Beaumont, Orange and Lufkin.

    Man robbed at knife point in Port Arthur

    Port Arthur police say a man suffered a minor injury Friday afternoon during a robbery on 9th Avenue. They say it happened near Lan's Quick Stop. The victim said a man approached him with a knife from behind and demanded his wallet and phone. 

    UPDATE: Jefferson County judge postpones vote on Al Price unit's future after uproar about sex offenders Video included

    12News HD has learned a facility on Highway 69 between Beaumont and Port Arthur is creating such a commotion among local lawmakers because of the type of inmates who could be housed at the facility.

    A rumbling train engine is keeping on Nederland neighborhood awake

    When Susan Steele and Lisa Simon moved into their Nederland homes near the intersection of Sixth Street and Boston Avenue it was quiet. Nowadays, all they hear is the constant chattering of a train engine.

    Lamar students say school loans are part of growing up Video included

    Student loan debt is in the trillions of dollars nationwide and Texas students hold their fair share. Projectstudentdebt.org has compiled data from loan service providers and says Lamar University students who graduated in 2013 left school with an average of over $28,000 worth of student loan debt. Students still in school say the bill is just part of growing up.

    Deweyville Elementary campus briefly on lockdown after report of shots fired near the school

    The Deweyville Elementary School campus was placed on lockdown Friday as deputies investigated a report of shots fired in a neighborhood near the campus. 

    Two arrested for Lake Charles Casino armed robbery

    A spokesperson for the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office said two people have been arrested after an armed robbery at a Lake Charles casino during which an employee had a gun held to her head.

    The robbery happened around 1 a.m. on March 13 at the Vegas Magic casino located at 520 Hwy. 397 in Lake Charles.

    UPDATE: Rep. Joe Deshotel responds to 12News report, opposes use of Al Price Unit to house sex offenders

    After hearing a 12News report of an agenda item on the Jefferson County Commissioners' Court at the behest of the Governor, to transfer the Al Price Unit back to the state, Rep. Joe Deshotel made inquiries to various state agencies as to its intended purpose. He said he discovered that the Governor's office wishes to use the facility to house sex offenders from across the state, a move Deshotel strongly opposes.

    8 arrested after drug investigation in Mauriceville

    A spokesperson for the Orange County Sheriff's Office said around 9 p.m. Wednesday, deputies with a narcotics search warrant searched a house located at 9380 Terri Road off of FM 1136 in Mauriceville. 

    South Texas State Fair photos

     Photos from this year's fair

    No injuries reported in Nederland mobile home fire

    No injuries have been reported following a mobile home fire in Nederland Friday morning.

    Texas running out of space for inmates, looking to Jefferson County for vacancies Video included

    The state of Texas is in need of more space for inmates. That's why the governor's office has reached out to Jefferson County for help. The state wants to reclaim the former Al Price Juvenile Correctional Facility on Highway 69. On the agenda for Monday's Jefferson County Commissioners' Court meeting, commissioners will be voting on transferring ownership of the facility back to the state.

    YMBL South Texas State Fair officially opens Video included

    It's once again fair time in Southeast Texas.The YMBL South Texas State Fair kicked off Thursday night, with an opening ceremony and an eager crowd.

    That means Southeast Texans have from now until April 5 to enjoy the rides, food and nightly live music.

    Potholes in Warren causing major problems for drivers Video included

    Several inches deep, and several feet wide – drivers on county road 1325 near Warren said all of the potholes have hurt their pockets.

    U.S. drops propaganda bomb on ISIL

    The Pentagon has launched a propaganda program in Syria aimed at creating fissures among Islamic State fighters by dropping 60,000 leaflets at the center of the militants' power base.

    At least 12 hurt in explosion and fire at NYC apartment building

    At least 12 people were hurt, three critically, in an explosion and collapse at an apartment building in Manhattan Thursday, and a seven-alarm fire raged in the aftermath.

    Orange doctor's office asks woman to cover tattoos Video included

    A sign posted on the reception window at an Orange County family practice doctor's office reads: “shoes required,” “shirt required” and "any visible tattoos must be covered." Many people have expressed disgust to the dress code policy after someone snapped a picture of the sign and posted it on social media.

    Mistrial declared in 2012 Beaumont double-murder case

    A mistrial was declared Thursday in the trial of a man accused of shooting and killing a pregnant mother of two and her boyfriend.

    Vidor man dies in police custody in Lake Charles

    According to a news release from the Lake Charles Police Department, Kevin Lynn Hill, 41, of Vidor, was arrested after an incident at the Golden Nugget Casino.

    Truancy programs aim to curb problem Video included

    Southeast Texas has contributed to a substantial increase in the number of state criminal truancy cases, and Texas has the highest number of cases in the country.

    According to Port Arthur Constable Deputy Jennifer Vogel, who handles the districts truancies, the Pct. 8 Justice of the Peace heard more than 5,000 cases concerning school violations between 2011 and 2014, a majority of those violations being truancy.

    Millet Harrison speaks exclusively to 12News following judge's ruling to release him after 20 years in mental institution Video included

    The Beaumont man sent to a mental institution after killing his mother, thanked Judge Larry Gist for Gist's decision to let Harrison out of Rusk State Hospital after 20 years there.  A jury found Harrison not guilty by reason of insanity, but he still lost his freedom.  Harrison said, "I thank the judge for being fair and honest." 

    Sewage water concerns Beaumont community

    People living in one Beaumont neighborhood told 12News HD they want the city to fix the plugged sewer causing standing water to stink-up their neighborhood.

    Three Americans in Germanwings plane crash

    Among the 150 passengers on board the Germanwings plane crash that occurred on Tuesday, March 24, three Americans are now being confirmed to have been on the flight. Two of the known passengers are Yvonne Selke and daughter, Emily. The other victim's identity is still unknown.

    Resurfacing project makes for bumpy ride down Delaware St Video included

    Road construction in the north side of Beaumont is causing a bumpy ride for those who frequently drive down Delaware St. Many drivers take Delaware to avoid construction on the Eastex Freeway but now, orange cones and work crews are popping up on the surface street as well. Crews have already removed asphalt on Delaware St. from the Eastex Freeway to Lucas in phase one of a three phase project.

    Second arrest from Jefferson County's first ever gang injunction announced

    A second arrest has been made in the wake of the creation of Jefferson County's first gang injunction that was announced earlier this year.

    Javier Palacios was arrested Tuesday night by Port Arthur Police Street Crimes Unit members along with the assistance of Groves Police Department. 

    Man indicted for his alleged role in the death of a Lamar University student

    A Beaumont man has been indicted in connection with a shooting that claimed the life of a Lamar University student last year.

    Nome man indicted in 2014 fatal collision involving pickup, tractor

    A 35-year-old man from Nome is indicted on one count of criminally negligent homicide in connection with an Oct 14, 2014 fatal collision. The charge was handed up this week against Trevor Heath Denton, 36, of Nome.

    Motorcycle rider hospitalized, pickup driver ticketed following collision in Pinehurst

    A Pinehurst motorcycle rider was taken to the hospital with serious injuries following an accident Tuesday afternoon.

    One person rescued after car flips in Jasper County

    A woman was trapped early Wednesday morning when her car rolled over in Jasper County.

    The accident happened at about 4 a.m. at FM 105 and CR 829 near Evadale.

    Neighbors say the crash sounded like an explosion and one person who lives nearby was able to rescue the driver from the overturned car.

    Protesters picket city hall over water department controversy Video included

    A group of upset backers of Beaumont water department employees picketed outside city hall to protest how the office is being operated.

    Holding signs that read, "Our husbands and fathers are not thieves," the group expressed concerns about department changes, that include cuts in overtime and layoffs for temporary employees.

    NISD student hospitalized with symptoms of viral meningitis Video included

    A spokesperson for the Nederland Independent School District has notified 12News that the district was notified of a student's admission to the hospital with symptoms of viral meningitis. 

    Former Jasper County sheriff in spotlight again Video included

    In Jasper today, movie crews from the United Kingdom interviewed former Sheriff Billy Rowles about his role investigating the murder of James Byrd Jr. in 1998. Crews wanted the plotline under wraps, but 12News spoke with one of the movie's stars, Rowles, who travels the country – telling Jasper's story.

    Port Arthur intersection closed after hole opens up

    Port Arthur city officials have closed the intersection of 4th Street and DeQueen Boulevard indefinitely after a deep hole opened up Tuesday morning.

    A garbage truck drove over the roadway and the hole opened up.  The hole is estimated to be around 50 feet deep.

    Senior picture season arrives Video included

    Spring Break is over for many Southeast Texans and the next thing many students are looking forward to is graduation. Emily Marks is getting ready to graduate from High School and the Bridge City native is not trusting a bestie with an iPhone to capture the best shot for her announcements."It's not like you're taking a selfie on your phone," said Marks.

    Deputies rescue calf after two days stuck in mud

    A livestock deputy with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office rescued a calf that was stuck in mud for at least two days.

    Fire tears through north Beaumont home

    Beaumont Fire Captain Earl White told 12News a woman called 911 and was able to get out safely after a fire erupted at her home Tuesday morning.

    The fire happened around 8 a.m. at a home in the 5300 block of Heatherwood Drive in north Beaumont.

    Lawyer for demoted city official demanding answers Video included

     The lawyer for Beaumont's former water utilities director is demanding the city allow his client the chance to clear his name. 

    The letter was sent on behalf of Hani Tohme by Houston civil rights lawyer Larry Watts.12News obtained the letter through a city hall source. 

    $32 million Domino's lawsuit overturned Video included

    A $32 million judgment stemming from a 2012 deadly crash involving a Beaumont pizza delivery driver has been overturned.

    In August 2012, Ruth Christopher, 65, and her husband Devavaram Christopher, 70, were hit by a Domino's delivery driver who had hydro-planed and crashed into their car on Major Dr.

    Family mourns loss of "Baby Olivia's" father Video included

    A case that has captivated southeast Texas has taken an even more tragic turn. Allen Coats, the father of "Baby Olivia,” was found dead outside of a central Texas hotel this weekend. He fought to pass "the Olivia Law" throughout last year.

    Ultrasound scans show effects of smoking in unborn babies

    Unborn babies appear disturbed in the womb when their mother lit up a cigarette, scientists showed in a new study.    

    Death by firing squad: Utah Governor signs bill into law

    Utah's governor has signed a law that makes his state the only one to allow firing squads for carrying out executions if no lethal injection drugs are available. 

    Lake Charles man admits to cruelty charges over a report card

    On March 19, a Lake Charles resident, Terrell O'Nell Brown, was arrested and charged with four counts of cruelty to a juvenile after admitting he whipped a family member with a belt over a report card.

    After receiving complaints against the 24-year-old for physically abusing a 10-year-old male family member, deputies arrived to learn that Brown had hit the victim several times.

    Former Port Arthur city employee pleads guilty to felony theft

    A former Port Arthur City employee who was indicted last year for charging the city $7,000 for lawn services that were never rendered has pleaded guilty in court.

    Group protests changes at the City of Beaumont water department Video included

    A group calling itself Citizens for Water Employees gathered on Dowlen Road in Beaumont Sunday.  Members protested changes at the city's water utilities department.

    Tracy Byrd to be inducted to Texas Country Music Hall of Fame

    Tracy Byrd will be inducted into the Texas Country Hall of Fame Aug. 8, 2015, in Carthage Texas.

    No injuries reported in north Beaumont house fire

     No injuries are reported following a fire in north Beaumont Monday morning.

    The fire was reported around 7 a.m. at a house located in the 5300 block of Rose Lane.

    Man shoots himself in the face after four hour standoff in Beaumont Video included

    A man involved in a four hour standoff is in stable condition after shooting himself in the face, according to a spokesperson for Beaumont Police.

    Across American oilfields, layoffs and auctions

    USA TODAY - LONGMONT, Colo. — Convinced he can ride out the slowing fortunes of America's oil and gas industry, Shawn Kluver arrived at Thursday's heavy equipment auction with money to spend and bets to make. Kluver flew to Colorado from North Dakota on a one-way ticket, confident he'd find bargains to drive home.

    Rains fill ditches, flood some roads Video included

    Heavy rains Saturday are causing some major headaches around Southeast Texas. Authorities report many roads and underpasses are covered by water.

    Man faces aggravated assault charges for road rage incident in Vidor

    Vidor Police Chief Dave Shows tells 12News officers are investigating the circumstances leading up to a road rage incident that resulted in a police chase down several streets around 2am Saturday morning.

    Beaumont police search for man who exposed himself to juveniles

    The Beaumont Police Department is investigating a report of a man who exposed himself to two juveniles.

    Two sent to hospital in wrong-way collision

    The drivers of two vehicles were sent to hospital with non-life threatening injuries in a wrong-way accident in Beaumont overnight. Police say the accident happened on Cardinal Drive and 4th Street at about 3 a.m. when the driver of a Honda Civic was traveling the wrong direction in the south lane and struck a service truck. 

    Efforts are underway for a community-owned grocery store in Port Arthur Video included

    The neighborhood surrounding Gilham Circle was once a thriving part of Port Arthur, but Hurricane Rita dealt it a severe blow. But a decade later, Cuevas Peacock, a young community activist, and his group PRO-ACT, which stands for promoting action in our communities and towns are hoping to breathe new life into the area, starting with a grocery store.

    Christus Hospital may no longer accept Blue Cross

    The CHRISTUS Hospital System may no longer accept Blue Cross Blue Shield Insurance after a 50 year partnership -- if a new deal is not agreed upon by April 1.

    Community seeks restoration of historic home Video included

    A northern Newton County community is pushing to transform a historic home into a civic center. It was named one of the top 10 most endangered places in Texas by “Preservation Texas,” a non-profit dedicated to protecting Texas historic places.

    Time Warner extends services Video included

    Time Warner crews have already started installing internet and cable services to parts of Orange County.

    Buna man killed in one-vehicle accident

    A Buna man is dead following a one-vehicle accident Friday morning.

    Body found near Rainbow Bridge identified as Port Arthur man

    The Orange County Sheriff's Office have identified the body of a man found Thursday near the Rainbow bridge.

    Orange County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Deputy Clint Hodgkinson told 12News a construction worker found the body around 12:40 p.m. Thursday.

    Vidor residents look for solution to stalking issue Video included

    A post online asking for advice on how to handle a stalker is sparking debate in Vidor. The question garnered dozens of suggestions and even stories of Southeast Texans having to deal with their own scary situations."I think it does happen," said Vidor native Angela Smith. "There are some pretty bad people here."Smith says harassment is evolving as new technology adds weapons to the stalker's arsenal."

    Cooking Channel's Great American Country spotlights Nederland Heritage Festival

    The Heritage Festival in Nederland is a place where good food meets great causes and that is why it caught the eye of Carnival Eats that is aired on Great American Country and the Cooking Channel.

    Woman shot in head during rush hour commute on North Freeway

    A woman was shot in the head during Friday's morning rush hour commute on the North Freeway.

    SETX congressman ranks among top "richest new members"

    Freshman U.S. Representative Brian Babin has made it onto a new list of the "richest new members" of the 114th Congress.    

    Highway 69 North at the I-10 split re-opens after early morning shut down

    Highway 69 north at the I-10 split is back open following a fuel spill that caused officials to shut those lanes down.

    Beaumont police officers and firefighters told 12News fuel was leaking from an 18-wheeler.  Police were called to the scene shortly before 2 a.m. Friday.

    One taken to the hospital following an accident on Eastex Highway

    Beaumont police, fire and EMS responded to an accident involving 2 vehicles on Eastex Freeway southbound at the Highway 105 exit at 7 a.m. Friday

    According to a firefighter on the scene a female passenger in the Kia Sedan was taken to the hospital.

    Families furious after Burkeville ISD holds seminar for only black students Video included

    Several parents whose children attend Burkeville ISD called 12News HD on Thursday, furious that a motivational speaker held a seminar Thursday morning only for the school's African-American students.

    Propanegate: The nation's top 2 propane suppliers conspire to shortchange stores & you Video included

      The Federal Trade Commission has accused the nation's top propane tank suppliers of cheating customers, specifically large retail stores like Lowe's and Walmart.
     
    In a recent report, the commission stated, "In 2008, Blue Rhino and AmeriGas increased prices by reducing the amount of propane contained in propane exchange tanks."

    Bassmaster Elite returns to massive SETX crowds Video included

    The Orange County River Festival and Bassmaster Elite series kicked off Thursday, drawing huge crowds once again.

    When the tournament last visited Orange in March 2013, records were smashed with more than 33,000 people attending the event over four days, beating the previous attendance record in Decatur, Alabama, by almost 16,000 fans.

    PHOTOS: Anglers get ready to launch on the first day of the Bassmaster Elite Series

    Bassmaster Elite at Sabine River Presented by STARK Cultural Venues

    Former Kountze city councilman sentenced for felony theft

    A former Kountze city councilman has entered a guilty plea to state jail felony theft.

    Ira Braneff entered the guilty plea Wednesday and was sentenced to five years probation, a $1,000 fine and is required to pay restitution.

    Kraft recalls 242,000 cases of mac and cheese that could contain metal

    Kraft Foods is recalling 242,000 cases of original flavor Kraft Macaroni Cheese because some of the boxes contain small pieces of metal.

    Drugs, firearm found in Jasper County drug raid

     A Jasper County woman, 53, is in jail following a drug raid at a Rayburn Country home.

    Sheriff Mitchell Newman said in a news release Tuesday that drug paraphernalia, a firearm and multiple prescription pills were found in the raid along with an amount of meth.

    Newton man sentenced for child pornography

    A 61-year-old Newton man has been sentenced to federal prison for child pornography violations.

    According to a news release issued Tuesday by the office of U.S. Attorney John M. Bales, John Dale Clark pleaded guilty on Oct. 28, 2014, to the sexual exploitation of a child and was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Thad Heartfield.

    Two pigs killed in barn fire

    Firefighters from the Nome, China and Sour Lake Fire Departments were tasked with getting around saturated ground to extinguish a barn fire that killed two pigs Monday afternoon.

    Texas Senate approves open carry for handguns

    A bill lifting some of the state's restrictions on handguns cleared the Texas Senate along a party line vote of 20 to 11 Monday.

    Jefferson County prepares for mosquito season Video included

    Southeast Texans have finally caught the sun in a game of hide and seek this week but the higher temperatures also mean the return of some blood sucking pests. Kevin Dupont has been taking advantage of the cooler temperatures on his runs through the hike and bike trail off Dishman in Beaumont but he says it's just a matter of time until he stays moving to avoid more than a drop in heart rate. The Beaumont jogger says once that sun goes down, the pests pop up.

    Hearing set to determine whether capital murder suspect can be tried elsewhere

    A hearing will take place in April to determine if a man facing Capital Murder charges will be tried in Jefferson County or if a previous change of venue ruling will stand.Judge Raquel West set the hearing over Joseph Colone's case for April 2nd. West says the state filed a motion to reconsider or reopen evidence on the change of venue which was granted by Judge Layne Walker in 2013.

    Port Arthur municipal court clerk fired amid accusations of theft of court fines

     A Port Arthur court clerk has been fired and is facing possible charges from the Jefferson County District Attorney's office related to theft of municipal court fines and tampering with official court documents.  

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