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

February 21, 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Reminder: This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change.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:

IMMIGRATION-SEPARATING FAMILIES

HOUSTON _ Months after the Trump administration announced an end to its wide-scale separation of migrant parents and children, the policy remains a heated issue in the courts and at the border as critics contend the government is still needlessly breaking up immigrant families. The Texas Civil Rights Project released a report Thursday that counts 272 separations at a single Texas courthouse since June, when President Donald Trump issued an executive order ending widespread separations amid public outrage. The bulk of those cases involve children who cross the U.S.-Mexico border with relatives other than their parents, such as grandparents, uncles and aunts, or adult siblings. Thirty-eight cases involved a parent or legal guardian, the majority of whom had criminal convictions, the group said. By Nomaan Merchant. SENT: 810 words.

HOUSTON OFFICERS SHOT

HOUSTON _ Prosecutors will review more than 1,400 criminal cases that involved a Houston officer who the police chief has accused of lying in an affidavit justifying a drug raid on a home in which officers shot and killed two residents, authorities said Wednesday. The FBI also announced that it is opening an investigation to determine whether any civil rights were violated as a result of the raid and shooting last month. By Juan A. Lozano. SENT: 550 words, photos.

TEXAS GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS:

COAST GUARD LIEUTENANT-HIT LIST

WASHINGTON _ A Coast Guard lieutenant who was arrested last week is a “domestic terrorist” who drafted an email discussing biological attacks and had what appeared to be a hit list that included prominent Democrats and media figures, prosecutors said in court papers. Christopher Paul Hasson is due to appear Thursday in federal court in Maryland after his arrest on gun and drug offenses, but prosecutors say those charges are the “proverbial tip of the iceberg.” Among those mentioned on the list _ created in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet _ is former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, according to the court filing. By Michael Balsamo. SENT: 640 words, photos. Moved on national political news services.

TRUMP-BORDER SECURITY

WASHINGTON _ House Democrats will file a resolution Friday aimed at blocking the national emergency declaration that President Donald Trump has issued to help finance his wall along the Southwest border, teeing up a clash over billions of dollars, immigration policy and the Constitution’s separation of powers. That could set up a vote by the full House by mid-March, if not sooner. Trump has promised to veto the measure. It seems unlikely Congress could muster the two-thirds majorities in each chamber needed to override a veto. Aides to Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, were circulating a letter Wednesday to other congressional offices seeking additional co-sponsors to his one-page resolution. By Alan Fram. SENT: 940 words, photos. Moved on national political news services.

With:

_ BORDER WALL LAWSUIT-EL PASO _ A West Texas border county and a nonprofit civil rights group have jointly filed a lawsuit in federal court aiming to overturn President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration. SENT: 130 words.

AROUND THE STATE & NATION:

OBIT-ARMANDO RODRIGUEZ

Armando M. Rodriguez, a Mexican immigrant and World War II veteran who served in the administrations of four U.S. presidents while pressing for civil rights and education reforms, has died. Christy Rodriguez, his daughter, said Wednesday her father died Sunday at their San Diego home from complications of a stroke. He was 97. She said he had been ailing from a variety of illnesses in recent years. By Russell Contreras. SENT: 400 words, photos. Moved on general and political news services.

HOUSE EXPLOSION-EVACUATIONS

DALLAS _ The family of a 12-year-old girl who died in a natural gas explosion at her Dallas home has released cellphone video the girl recorded in the minutes leading up to the blast. Linda “Michellita” Rogers is shown in three separate short videos preparing her hair and wearing her uniform in preparation for a cheerleading event. She speaks quietly so as not to wake her family in the early-morning hours. The last video, shot in hyper speed as she braided her hair, was recording when the explosion occurred Feb. 23. SENT: 370 words, photos.

SMALLBIZ-SMALL TALK-MANAGING CHANGE

NEW YORK _ Small-business owners who recognize the impact that change can have on employees can limit the fallout by helping staffers with the transition. Dave Munson tried to make change pain free and found it hurt the business. The owner of Saddleback Leather, a maker of leather goods, realized in 2015 that having most of his employees work remotely cost the business time, money and efficiency. He told his 50 far-flung staffers they’d have to move to the company’s Fort Worth headquarters or leave. But he also said staffers who decided against moving could take their time looking for a job. And they did: It took three years to complete the transition, further draining the company’s finances and productivity. By Joyce M. Rosenberg. SENT: 1000 words, photos. Moved on general, financial and personal finance news services.

With:

_ SMALLBIZ-MANAGING CHANGE-TIPS

IN BRIEF:

_ TEXARKANA-HOMELESS COUNTS _ The mayors of Texarkana in Texas and Arkansas have pledged to cooperate on the annual homeless counts in their respective cities. SENT: 130 words.

_ TODDLER KILLED-FATHER CHARGED _ Police say a Southeast Texas man who used a hammer to kill his 2-year-old daughter is being held on $2 million bond after being arraigned on a capital murder charge. SENT: 120 words.

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