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

May 15, 2019

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. Jill Bleed 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Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change.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.

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TOP STORIES:

CHINA-TRADE

WASHINGTON _ For many Americans, President Donald Trump’s trade war may soon get very real. His administration is preparing to extend 25% tariffs to practically all Chinese imports not already hit with duties. That’s roughly an additional $300 billion worth of products, ranging from pacifiers and flashlights to billiard balls and golf carts. And it would come on top of $250 billion in Chinese goods targeted earlier. Some businesses are still reeling from the earlier tariffs. At the Luggage Shop of Lubbock in Texas, business is down 6% from the same period last year. “People are still traveling and buying, but they’re just not buying as much of the upper mid-price points and higher price points, which is our bread and butter,” owner Tiffany Zarfas Williams said. She had to drop plans to hire an extra person for the holidays. As the trade war goes on, she said, “I don’t know whether we’d be able to add any additional people.” By Paul Wiseman and Joyce M. Rosenberg. SENT: 780 words, photos. Moved on national general and financial news services.

TEXAS GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS:

BORDER WALL

PHOENIX _ The U.S. government plans on replacing barriers through 100 miles of the southern border in California and Arizona, including through a national monument and a wildlife refuge, according to documents and environmental advocates. The Department of Homeland Security has once again waived environmental and dozens of other laws to build more barriers along the U.S.-Mexico border. Funding will come from the Defense Department following the emergency declaration that President Donald Trump signed this year after Congress refused to approve the amount of border wall funding that he wanted. By Astrid Galvan and Nomaan Merchant. SENT: 630 words, photos. Moved on general and political news services.

Also:

_ TRUMP-JUDICIAL NOMINEE _ The Senate has confirmed a new federal judge in Eastern Texas, despite comments he made disparaging former President Barack Obama. SENT: 130 words.

AROUND THE STATE & NATION:

JOHN WETTELAND-ARREST

DENTON, Texas _ John Wetteland is stunned by and innocent of charges accusing him of child sex abuse, said an attorney for the former All-Star and World Series MVP pitcher. Attorney Derek Adame commented Monday after Wetteland attended an arraignment hearing in Denton County, Texas. Wetteland and his wife didn’t speak to reporters. The Texas Rangers Hall of Famer is staying strong in the face of the charges accusing him of abusing a child for two years starting in 2004 when the alleged victim was 4 years old, Adame said. SENT: 250 words, photos. Moved on general and sports news services.

WIFE’S BODY IN CAR

PHOENIX _ A husband arrested in Arizona on suspicion of concealing his wife’s dead body was seen earlier on security video moving a woman’s naked body to his vehicle outside a Texas hotel, police said. Previous footage showed the couple from Sand Springs, Oklahoma, walking into their room at the El Paso hotel on Sunday evening. The next morning, 70-year-old Rodney Puckett is seen using a luggage cart to move the body of 74-year-old Linda Puckett, said Sgt. Kristie Barnette, a police spokeswoman in Eloy, where Rodney Puckett was later arrested. By Jacques Billeaud. SENT: 340 words, photos.

IN BRIEF:

_ HOUSTON-MISSING GIRL _ Searchers for a missing 4-year-old Houston girl are looking in an area around a Halloween haunted house. SENT: 130 words.

_ SUSPECT-BODIES-BURNING CAR _ Investigators now say the bodies found in a burning car on a remote North Texas road were the children of a man later found dead nearby. SENT: 130 words.

_ MOTHER KILLED-TEXTS _ Attorneys for a teenager convicted in the murder of her mother in eastern Pennsylvania are seeking a new trial, calling the outcome of her case “shocking.” Now-18-year-old Jamie Silvonek was sentenced to 35 years to life after pleading guilty in the Lehigh County killing of 54-year-old Cheryl Silvonek in 2015, when the teen was 14. Co-defendant Caleb Barnes of El Paso, Texas, a soldier at Fort Meade, Maryland, was convicted and sentenced to life without parole. SENT: 140 words.

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