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AP-TX--Texas News Digest 12 am, TX

November 29, 2018

Good morning! Here’s a look at AP’s general news coverage in Texas at this hour. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the Dallas AP at 972-991-2100, or, in Texas, 800-442-7189. Email: aptexas@ap.org. Ken Miller is at the desk after 5:30 a.m.

Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Central.

For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org.




DALLAS — Smaller escort websites are vying for the lucrative online sex-for-hire market Backpage.com dominated before U.S. authorities shut it down earlier this year, a move that fractured the industry and forced law enforcement to adapt their efforts combating sex trafficking. Online sex ads plunged in April following Backpage’s seizure and President Donald Trump’s signing of legislation aimed at websites that facilitate sex trafficking. But a new analysis finds the drop in the number of ads may have been short-lived. By Ryan Tarinelli. SENT: 850 words, photos.



AUSTIN, Texas — Beto O’Rourke and Julian Castro were barely old enough for elementary school the last time a Democrat from ruby red Texas ran for the White House. But after a midterm campaign that saw Democrats make inroads throughout the Sun Belt, both Texans are signaling they could make a play for the presidency. It’s a reversal for a state where Democrats often seek big-money donors, not White House hopefuls. And it could fuel a rivalry between two of the party’s brightest Texas stars. For now, after decades of disappointment, Texas Democrats are excited about the potential of sending two of their own to the national political stage. By Will Weissert and Paul J. Weber. SENT: 880 words, photos.


EL PASO, Texas — U.S. Border Patrol agents near Tijuana, Mexico, faced a choice as they looked out over the chaos at a crowd of migrants that included rock-throwing men as well as barefoot children: Do they respond with force — and, if so, what kind? The circumstances at the San Ysidro border crossing Sunday were exceptional, but the question facing the agents was not. It’s a split-second choice more often made in the remote desert, far from cameras, where agents are likely working alone and encountering groups of people crossing illegally. The agents’ response — firing tear gas into the crowd — triggered widespread outrage and rekindled complaints that the Border Patrol, bolstered by President Donald Trump’s tough talk, is too quick to use force, particularly when responding to people throwing rocks. By Colleen Long. SENT: 980 words, photos.


FORT WORTH, Texas — Emails show Republican county leaders in one of the most populous counties in Texas want to remove a party vice chairman because he’s Muslim. The emails delivered anonymously to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram indicate the Tarrant County GOP executive committee plans to vote Jan. 10 on whether to remove Shahid Shafi from his leadership position. Some in the party say Shafi, a surgeon and suburban city council member, may be more loyal to Islamic law or not supportive enough of the party’s pro-Israel platform. Shafi says he supports American laws and the court system. SENT: 320 words.


INDIANAPOLIS — A nonprofit group that wants to open a South Bend abortion clinic was dealt a setback after a state administrative panel ruled that Indiana’s health department acted properly in denying them a license. The 2-1 vote reverses an administrative law judge’s earlier finding in favor of Texas-based Whole Woman’s Health Alliance. By Brian Slodysko. SENT: 580 words.



HOUSTON — A Texas appeals court’s ruling could allow state authorities to formally license two detention centers that house thousands of immigrant families, something advocates warn might lead to the unlimited detention of migrant children. Two facilities in the South Texas cities of Karnes and Dilley have the capacity to detain roughly 3,500 parents and children. Under federal court rulings, the government is required to release children from Karnes or Dilley quickly because the facilities aren’t licensed by a state or local government. That effectively leads to the faster release of many parents as well. SENT: 420 words, photos.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — An attorney representing the family of a Honduran transgender migrant who died while in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement claims the woman did not receive adequate medical care and was physically abused. Hernandez arrived in the United States in the spring as part of a highly publicized caravan of Central American asylum seekers. She was taken into custody in San Diego and was later transferred to El Paso, Texas, before being taken to the Cibola County Detention Center in western New Mexico. SENT: 520 words.



SODUS, N.Y. — A husband and wife from Texas have been arraigned on murder charges in the slayings of the wife’s ex-boyfriend and a woman in upstate New York. Charlene Childers, 26, was arraigned in Wayne County Court in New York on second-degree murder charges. She has been held in the county jail since originally being charged with conspiracy and criminal possession of a weapon in last month’s fatal shootings of Amber Washburn and Joshua Niles, Childers’ ex-boyfriend. Childers’ husband, former Sunray, Texas, police chief Timothy Dean, was arraigned later in the same court on first- and second-degree murder, conspiracy and criminal possession of a weapon. Childers and Dean both pleaded not guilty to the murder charges during separate court proceedings. SENT: 420 words.


BISMARCK, N.D. — A Texas-based developer said it complied with the terms of a 2017 agreement settling allegations it violated North Dakota rules during construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, but state regulators want more details. Energy Transfer Partners in October filed documents detailing efforts by a contractor to plant 141,000 trees and shrubs over the past two years to replace those removed for the pipeline. Last spring, the company filed a nearly 80-page industry handbook it developed on how to properly handle pipeline route adjustments. By Blake Nicholson. SENT: 480 words, photos. Moved on general and financial news services.


— SOCIAL MEDIA THREATS-CHARGES — A 19-year-old Texas man has been charged with making threats over social media against female students from a San Francisco Bay Area high school. SENT: 130 words.

— SERIAL KILLER-INVESTIGATION-COLD CASE — Police say a man who told Texas investigators that says he killed as many as 90 people has admitted killing a still-unidentified woman in Maryland more than 45 years ago. SENT: 130 words.

— DINOSAUR SKULL-LAWSUIT — Texas physician can keep his 70 million-year-old dinosaur skull fossil in an ownership fight with the U.S. government. SENT: 140 words.

— SHOOTING-TWO KILLED — Murder charges have been filed against a Texas woman accused along with her husband of killing two people in upstate New York. SENT: 130 words.

— HARVEY-RECOVERY-GRANTS — A relief fund established after heavy rain from Hurricane Harvey swamped parts of Houston has provided its final grants in an overall nearly $114 million charitable effort. SENT: 120 words, photos.

— KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE — A Montana judge says a Canadian company may continue preliminary work on the proposed Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL oil pipeline while his order blocking construction is in effect. SENT: 130 words.

— TYLER PAPER SOLD — The family that has owned the Tyler Morning Telegraph for almost a century is selling the newspaper to a group that owns three other Texas dailies, two of them in East Texas. SENT: 130 words.


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