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    Texas Education Commissioner is confident BISD won't be able to prevent state takeover Video included

     
    During the interview with 12News, Commissioner Michael Williams told us, "The elected leadership had totally and wholly lost the confidence and trust of the people of Beaumont.  They truly failed to implement the safeguards and procedures and systems that they had been directed to do so that would have protected the taxpayers."

    TOP STORIES

    Police: Family's pet raccoon attacks two-week-old son Video included

    A newborn is recovering and his mother faces possible criminal charges after Kountze Police say a pet raccoon attacked the infant. 

    Community to help teachers affected by school fire Video included

    Investigators are hoping to soon determine what caused the fire that ripped through Hamshire-Fannett Elementary School last month. The State Fire Marshal's Office tells 12News they are currently waiting for asbestos test results to come back before they can do an on-site investigation.

    A former Hamshire-Fannett ISD student and a friend are putting on a community fundraiser this weekend for teachers who lost personal items in the fire.

    Thousands of bees invade a Nederland home

    Homeowners in Nederland are being forced out of their home by bees... thousands of them. 

    Exterminators say the bees slowly started infesting a home on Woodridge last year,but with all the warm weather, they've multiplied.

    Three home invasions in Port Arthur in less than an hour Video included

    The Port Arthur Police Department is investigating three home invasion robberies that happened early Wednesday morning.

    A police department spokesperson said the first robbery happened at 1:13 a.m. in the 5100 block of 4th Street. Less than 20 minutes later officers were called to a house in the 2900 block of 19th Street and at 2 a.m. officers were called to a home in the 3700 block of 5th Street.  

    Lockdown lifted at Beaumont school campuses, police investigate nearby shooting

    Three Beaumont school campuses were placed on lockdown as police began investigating a Wednesday afternoon shooting.

    The lockdowns at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School, Fletcher Elementary and Pathways Learning Center in Beaumont were put in place as a precaution after police received a call from a man at the Oriental Food Market located at 1305 Franklin Street saying a shooting had happened nearby. This is at the intersection with Orange Street.

    Port Arthur mother says her son's dog is being held for ransom Video included

    A heartbroken mother had to tell her son that his dog was missing.

    Tucker is the family dog. Meghan Vital of Port Arthur says they adopted him from a rescue shelter. The dog was deaf and was about to be put to sleep, if the shelter didn't find him a family.

    Vital says her third grade son Tyson and Tucker were inseparable, and even slept together at night.

    Three arrested, charged with helping murder suspect hide

    The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office arrested three suspects as part of a murder investigation Wednesday.

    Hope Pennington, 27, of Groveton, Terrance Edwards, 33, of Crockett and Cedrick Edwards, 31, of Groveton are all relatives of murder suspect Cody Lewis. A sheriff’s office spokesperson said all three are charged with hindering apprehension of a fugitive.

    Teen struggles to recover while mourning mother's death after Easter crash Video included

    The young survivor of an Easter motorcycle accident continues to cling to life as she grieves the death of her mother. Emergency workers on the scene said that Jessica Twiner, 14 and her mom, Ramona Tolman, 44, both of Mauriceville, were on a three-wheeled motorcycle when they ran off the road and hit a fence and tree. Tolman was pronounced dead on the scene.

    Port Neches chemical plant unveils new environmental education center for students Video included

    Wild alligators and majestic birds lounging in a beautiful green landscape is not something you'd expect to find across the street from a giant chemical plant, but that's the case with the Huntsman plant in Port Neches.

    On Earth Day 2014, Huntsman Corp. unveiled its new Environmental Education Center located across the street from its plant. The small building will serve as a classroom where students in PNG ISD can learn about biology and wildlife.

    Deweyville I.S.D. school board changes prom dress code Video included

    Updated:

    Deweyville I.S.D. trustees change a controversial dress code that caused many students to plan on skipping prom just days before the big dance. 

    Major accident Phelan Boulevard at Arlington Drive in Beaumont

    Three people were taken to the hospital following a major accident at the intersection of Phelan Boulevard and Arlington Drive.  Their injuries were described as non life-threatening.

    The accident happened around 11:20 a.m. Tuesday.

    Port Arthur man to be sentenced in 2013 crime spree

    A Port Arthur man is awaiting sentencing after he pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of aggravated sexual assault and two counts of robbery.

    According to a news release issued by the office of Jefferson County  District Attorney Cory Crenshaw, Domminique Adams, 29, of Port Arthur, entered guilty pleas Tuesday.  The charges are related to a July 2, 2013 attack on a Port Arthur couple.

    FBI seeks victims of teacher accused of molesting students he drugged

    The FBI is asking for the public's help to find victims of a suspected child predator who taught in private American schools overseas beginning in 1972.

    Cigarette bandits in custody, Beaumont police say

    Two men are in jail after police say they burglarized a convenience store and stole cigarettes.

    Shortly after 11 p.m. April 17, officers were called to a convenience store located at 55 E. Caldwood in reference to an alarm. The front glass was broken and the business had been burglarized. Numerous packs of cigarettes were stolen.

    Beaumont Basilica home to second sacred saint relic Video included

    A reception was held at St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica Thursday to welcome the zucchetto, or skull cap, that belonged to Pope John Paul XXIII.

    It is the second relic of its kind to be housed there; Pope John Paul II's zucchetto is also on display at the Basilica. Monsignor Michael Jamail said it is extremely rare for a cathedral to house two relics of two soon-to-be saints.

    One dead in Jefferson County accident

    A Department of Public Safety spokesperson has identified a man killed in an accident Tuesday morning as Cuong Nguyen, 28, of Beaumont.

    The accident happened around 5:45 a.m. on West Port Arthur Road at South Garden Road in Jefferson County. This is in front of Live Oak Memorial Park.


    Community remembers Silsbee teen killed in Easter morning accident Video included

    The Silsbee community is grieving the loss of one of its own after a student died in a fatal accident Easter morning. 

    Purple shirts and purple posters Monday filled the hallways of Silsbee High School in remembrance of Jamarcus Myers, 18, of Silsbee, one day after the teen's death.

    Wife of Jack Brooks passes away

    The wife of the late U.S. Rep. Jack Brooks has passed away.

    Charlotte Brooks died Sunday at 78. Funeral services are pending with Broussard’s in Beaumont.

    Brooks’ husband, Congressman Brooks, passed away in 2012 just days before his 90th birthday. According to 12News file stories, Brooks was first elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1946 where he sponsored a bill that ultimately made Lamar University a four-year institution.

    Three from Orange, One from Houston arrested for Louisiana armed robbery

    Three men from Orange and one from Houston have been arrested following an armed robbery in Louisiana.

    A spokesperson with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office said around 11 p.m. Sunday deputies were called to a casino on Highway 109 South in Vinton. Two people said they were sitting inside their car in the parking lot of the casino when two men walked up. One had a handgun and they demanded money.The spok...

    One taken to hospital after Beaumont motorcycle accident

    One person was taken to the hospital with what are described as non life threatening injuries following a an accident involving a motorcycle and a pickup.

    The accident happened around 11:50 a.m. near the intersection of Highway 105 and Major Drive. A witness told 12News that the motorcycle was going out of the parking lot of the Exxon Station onto Highway 105 when it was clipped by a light blue pickup.

    Woman from Orange killed in motorcycle accident, daughter injured Video included

    The Texas Department of Public Safety is investigating a fatal motorcycle accident in Orange County.

    According to a DPS spokesperson, the accident happened around 2 p.m. Sunday on FM 1442 north of S. Terry Road.  The DPS spokesperson identified the person who was killed as Ramona Tolman, 44, of Orange. Tolman's 14-year-old daughter was seriously injured in the accident.

    Two arrested after accident sends Liberty County Judge and wife to hospital Video included

     Liberty County Judge Craig McNair Liberty County Judge Craig McNair

    A spokesperson for the Liberty County Sheriff's Office told 12News that Liberty County Judge Craig McNair and his wife, Lisa, were taken by medical helicopter to Memorial Hermann hospital in Houston following a head-on collision early Saturday morning.

    Liberty County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Joel Davila said that both the Judge and his wife appeared to be in “stable” condition when the helicopter picked them up at the accident site.

    Exclusive: Baptist Beaumont at risk of losing Medicare/Medicaid program Video included

    The Medicare and Medicaid program at Baptist Beaumont Hospital is at risk of being terminated after an incident that occurred at the hospital's Behavioral Health Center.

    Baptist Hospital spokesperson Mary Poole told 12News that the incident had to do with inappropriate levels of monitoring at the facility.  It is required to have a 1:1 monitoring ratio of staff to patients.

    Deweyville High student leads effort to amend or abolish prom dress code Video included

    Deweyville High School's junior/senior prom will be on Saturday, April 26, but on that day there are plans for two proms.  The second prom, which is being called an anti-prom, is being put together by students upset about Deweyville's dress code for prom.

    But junior class co-president Talon Shoemake does not support a protest prom because it would split his classmates, but he does not support the restrictive dress code either.

    BISD school board votes to appeal state takeover by the TEA Video included

    The Beaumont Independent School District will fight the takeover by the Texas Education Agency. Trustees Thursday night voted 5-2 to appeal the appointment of a conservator and board of managers.

    The two votes against making an appeal came from trustees Tom Neild and Mike Neil.

    During a special meeting board members went into executive session for about 30 minutes before voting on the appeal.

    Third suspect arrested in connection with Dallas man's murder

    There has been a major development in the killing of a Dallas man whose body was found near China. Authorities have made a third arrest in the death of 53-year-old Kevin Alton Moyer.

    27-year-old Cody Jamar Lewis was taken into custody Thursday night in Trinity County.

    Jeff. Co. Sheriff's Office shows off new tactical armored vehicle Video included

    It looks like something out of the movie "Transformers", but the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office new big, bad armored vehicle is anything but a product of Hollywood.

    It's called an MRAP, which stands for Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle. It weighs 15 tons, and costs close to $750,000. It came to Jefferson County this past fall, however, free of charge.

    Newton elementary student attacked by adult

    A Newton elementary student was punched by an adult Thursday morning.  The man then ran from the campus after the attack, according to a statement issued by the superintendent.

    The incident happened in a hall between classes.

    The statement from Superintendent Michelle Barrow says the adult male attacker persuaded the student to open a locked exterior door.  Once the door was opened, the adult punched the student

    One cut from wreckage following Port Arthur accident

    A firefighter on the scene of an accident in Port Arthur told 12News that a driver's injuries do not appear to be life threatening following.

    The accident happened around 10:30 a.m. in front of the landfill on Highway 73.

    The driver had to be cut out of the vehicle.

    Instagram account targets students at Hardin-Jefferson ISD Video included

    The account is called H-J Hoes, and it asks followers to submit pictures that should be featured on the site.

    The account has more than 450 followers.

    Superintendent Shannon Holmes, Ed.D, is taking the matter seriously.  He says it's not known if it's a student or someone in the community, but he says whomever it is could possibly face child pornography charges.

    LISD Superintendent yet to decide on fate of transgender substitute teacher Video included

    Lumberton Independent School District Superintendent John Valastro said he has not made a decision on whether to allow a transgender substitute teacher back into the classroom.

    This latest news comes almost a week after the substitute teacher, Laura Jane Klug, said she was told she would be kept on the list of substitutes.

    Thousands line up for Port Arthur housing assistance Video included

    The Port Arthur Housing Authority opened its Section 8 housing voucher waiting list for the first time in nearly three years. As a result, a line of thousands wrapped around the Bob Bowers Civic Center Wednesday in search of permanent housing.

    Section 8 is a national program that provides housing vouchers for low-income individuals or families.  The voucher can be used to pay up to 70% of a client's rent and utility costs.

    Judge extends TRO preventing former BISD coach from receiving checks

    A hearing was held Wednesday before 136th District Judge Milton Shuffield concerning a temporary restraining order preventing the Beaumont Independent School District from paying former coach Keeath Magee as part of a separation agreement.

    Judge Shuffield extended an existing TRO by 14 additional days.

    DPS offers $13,000 reward for Spring, Texas sex offender

    The Texas Department of Public Safety has offered a cash reward information leading to the capture of Juan Carlos Pena, 49, of Spring Texas.  The reward is good if the tip comes in before the end of the month.

    Video captures suspect watching sleeping baby during west Harris County burglary Video included

    The Harris County Sheriff's Office has released home surveillance video showing a burglary suspect walking through a victim's home, even staring at a sleeping baby.

    UPDATE: Amber Alert cancelled, missing Magnolia girl found safe

    MAGNOLIA, Texas -  The Amber Alert for the missing Magnolia girl has been cancelled after she was found safe in South Texas.

    Investigators say Elizabeth Rex, 14, was last seen on Monday at her home on Memory Lane when she went outside to play and never returned home.

    Guessing game begins about who'll serve on BISD board of managers Video included

    Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams must first wait on whether the Beaumont Independent School District will appeal his decision to take over the school district, before he can appoint a board of managers.

    But already, several names are being floated as possible candidates to serve as managers.

    Bar re-opens under new owners after closing due to TABC violations Video included

    New owners have taken over a popular Beaumont bar that has been in trouble recently with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.

    The West Bar and Grill closed November 2013.

    The business was cited for multiple violations by the TABC including two violations for serving a minor. The minor was 19-year-old Sarah Comstock of Lumberton.

    Orange County names April "Confederate History and Heritage Month" Video included

    Some residents in Orange County want the county to reconsider a recent decision proclaiming this April "Confederate History and Heritage Month".

    "I feel that it resurrected some of the bad feelings of the 19th century, and I think people need to move on," said Orange County resident Ralph Hawkins.

    Two-car accident ties up Tuesday-afternoon commute

    A two car accident Tuesday afternoon snarled the afternoon commute on Interstate 10 near the 11th Street exit in Beaumont. 

    Water park plans move forward at Ford Park Video included

    On Tuesday Beaumont city council members passed a vote to allow the city manager and city attorney to negotiate a project that would bring a water park and hotel to Ford Park.

    Ford Park's General Manager John Hughes said he's confident the city council will pass the final vote next week to bring the attractions because of the benefit he thinks it will bring to Beaumont.

    Liberty County man sentenced for child pornography

    A 70-year-old Daisetta man has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for child pornograph possession.

    Symphony of SETX executive director resigns

    A spokesperson for The Symphony of Southeast Texas Tuesday announced that Executive Director Craig Escamilla will resign his position effective May 31 to accept a position at Lamar University.

    A board search committee has been formed to find his replacement and encourages interested parties to visit www.sost.org for information and apply by April 25.

    BISD school board to vote on possible appeal of TEA takeover

    The Beaumont Independent School District Board of trustees is set to vote on an agenda item that would essentially appeal the Texas Education Agency's decision to take control of the district.

    An item on Thursday's agenda says trustees will consider a measure to, "Authorize the Attorney to Appeal TEA's Appointment of a Conservator and Board of Managers."

    Beaumont attorney pleads guilty to tax violation

    A spokesperson for the office of U.S. Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced Tuesday that Craig J. Schexnaider, of Beaumont, entered a guilty plea Monday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Zack Hawthorn to one count of failing to file an income tax return.

    City of Beaumont to mull over possible incentives to lure hotel and water park

    The Beaumont City Council Tuesday will hold an executive session to discuss development negotiations with a company proposing to build a hotel and water park development at Ford Park.

    Pate Development of Wichita, Kansas is working with city and county officials to negotiate an economic development agreement for the proposed development.

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