Monthly Archives: June 2016


Today, a Harris County Grand Jury indicted two Harris County Sheriff’s Deputies on charges of Official Oppression, both Misdemeanors.

The indictments come following a 2015 allegation that Deputies R. Pierre and W. Strong violated a defendant’s rights during a traffic stop and narcotics seizure.

Both Deputies were placed on administrative duties following the 2015 allegation, and have now been suspended from duty following the Grand Jury’s decision today.

The judicial process will render a final determination of any wrongdoing.



An alarming spike of boating-related fatalities on Texas waterways, including many involving paddle craft such as canoes and kayaks, is prompting a call for boaters to wear life jackets, avoid drinking alcohol and follow other safety practices heading into the peak summer boating season.

Texas Game Wardens report more than a dozen boating-related fatalities have occurred thus far in the state during 2016 and almost half involved kayaks. Another four open water fatalities took place across the state this past weekend, including drownings and boating accidents involving motor and paddle craft.

“These tragedies represent an alarming trend we’re seeing not just in Texas, but nationwide,” said Texas Game Warden Asst. Cmdr. Cody Jones, TPWD’s head of boating law enforcement. “In 2015, over 40 percent of boating-related fatalities in Texas involved paddle craft.”

Weather conditions, including heavy rains that caused flooding and increased water flows along most rivers and creeks, have been the most significant contributing factor in paddle craft fatalities this year. TPWD Boating Education Manager Tim Spice stresses that many of those tragedies could have been avoided with safe boating practices.

“Just as you wouldn’t get behind the wheel of a vehicle without first learning safe driving practices, it is critical to become familiar with paddle craft safety and operation before you launch,” said Spice.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard statistics at least 85 percent of people who drown in boating accidents were not wearing a personal flotation device (PFD) at the time.

“It is important to wear your PFD at all times when in, on and around the water,” Spice said. “This is especially true in the case of small boats or paddle craft due to the increased chance of capsizing. A canoe or kayak can capsize even in calm waters. PFDs can save lives, but only when worn.”

When choosing a PFD, always ensure that it has the ability to support your size and weight and is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard. The U.S. Coast Guard requires one wearable PFD for each person onboard, of appropriate size for the person intended.

TPWD offers online resources for a wide range of boater education and safety training, including a free online paddle craft safety course, on the agency boater ed web page. Also, anyone born on or after September 1, 1993 must complete a boater education course to operate a personal watercraft or a boat with a horsepower rating of more than 15 hp.

Boaters are reminded that Texas game wardens actively monitor water activities throughout the year and particularly during the summer months to ensure safe boating practices. Last year during the Fourth of July holiday weekend, game wardens made contact with over 30,000 boaters and arrested 58 operators for boating under the influence.

Water safety extends beyond boating and with most of the state’s reservoirs at or near capacity, game wardens are urging extra vigilance to stay safe heading into the busy Fourth of July holiday weekend.

There have also been more than 34 non-boating related drownings reported in Texas since January; over a third of those fatalities have occurred just since May.

“Enough is enough,” said Texas Game Warden Col. Craig Hunter, TPWD Director of Law Enforcement. “A day on the water in Texas should be all about the fun and following the basic rules of water safety can help keep your loved ones from harm. If you don’t know how to swim, learn and if you are impaired or unfamiliar with the water conditions don’t put yourself in jeopardy by taking unnecessary risks. Keep an eye on kids especially. It only takes a second to turn a fun day on the water into a tragedy.”

The American Red Cross offers swimming lessons by certified instructors across the state on its swimming web page.

Video documentaries online at TPWD’s water safety page put water and boating-related accidents into perspective, including “Never Happens,” the true stories of water tragedies told by teen witnesses and survivors, and “Beautiful but Gone,” which tells the story of boating and swimming-related accidents from the parents of teens featured in “Never Happens.”

Also, a video news report is now available based on the “Never Happens” longer video. See it on the TPWD YouTube Channel or download a high resolution version on the TPWD FTP site — look for file “VNR_ Never Happens.”

Stressed in the “Never Happens” video are four basic precautions for boaters of any age:

Wear a life jacket. Most persons who have died in a boating accident would be alive today if they had worn a life jacket.
Use the ignition safety switch. Commonly called a “kill switch,” it stops the engine if you fall overboard so you won’t be stranded or run over by your boat.
Learn how to swim.
Closely supervise children.




Chambers County game wardens recently completed a year-long investigation of an Operation Game Thief case resulting in the arrest of six subjects. In February 2015, a caller claimed to have heard an oyster boat operating after dark near his waterside home. The wardens responded to the area by boat and as they idled toward the dock, they surveyed the area with night vision. Two vehicles and a few individuals were seen fleeing the scene. At the dock, they found an oyster boat full of unsacked oysters. The wardens maintained surveillance of the scene well into the morning. At about 9:15 a.m. a vehicle returned to the scene and two men began sacking up the oysters. The wardens made contact with the suspects and began their investigation. Sixteen sacks of oysters were returned to the reef and the three subjects were released. Over the next few months phone records were subpoenaed helping to corroborate the details of the case and arrest warrants were obtained for night dredging. Cases pending.




It’s good news for employees at the Houston Independent School District. 

Their direct deposits are now correct in their bank accounts.

It was earlier this week when we reported a computer problem caused some funny business with payroll at HISD. 

Thousands of  district workers who are paid by direct deposit found themselves in some cases being shortchanged while others were overpaid. 

This was the result of the wrong direct deposit file being used.

HISD Trsutee Jolanda Jones says the problem was identified and addressed.


July is Parks and Recreation Month at City Hall. City leaders and kids came together downtown for the big kickoff!





Left to right Council Member David W. Robinson At-Large Position 2; Kay Joshua Division Manager, HPARD Recreation and Wellness Division; youth; Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner; youth; Debra Lathan, Assistant Director – Recreation and Wellness Division; Joe Turner, Director Houston Parks and Recreation Department

HPARD Summer Enrichment Program Youth at City Hall

Front Row Left to right: Kay Joshua Division Manager, HPARD Recreation and Wellness Division; Destini Atkins; Cha’liyah Atkins; Council Member David W. Robinson At-Large Position 2; 

                      2nd Row Left to right: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner; Debra Lathan, Assistant Director – Recreation and Wellness Division

                      3rd Row: Joe Turner, Director Houston Parks and Recreation Department

IMB 5539 – Front Row Left to right: Destini Atkins and Cha’liyah Atkins

                   Back Row Left to right: Kay Joshua Division Manager, HPARD Recreation and Wellness Division; Council Member David W. Robinson At-Large Position 2; 



It’s valued at $70 million.
Lesedi La Rona, an uncut diamond that weighs 1,109 carats, will be auctioned off this evening in a public auction at Sotheby’s  BID 2.56%  in London.

The diamond—which is the size of a tennis ball—was unearthed in Botswana by the Lucara Diamond Corporation. Previous reports said it was expected to be worth a total of $70 million and net about $35 million for the company.

Large cut diamonds have fetched record prices. For example, an 813 carat diamond called “The Constellation” sold for $63.1 million back in May. It also set the record for being the world’s most expensive diamond. And another, a 14.6 carat diamond called the “Oppenheimer Blue,” sold for $57.6 million at an auction.

Normally large stones, like the ones listed previously, are offered to a handful of sophisticated dealers in the diamond industry. These dealers then study the diamond for weeks to determine how many cut stones the rough one will yield. Once they figure how much the stones will be worth, they submit a sealed bid to the mining company, according to the New York Times.

However, selling the Lesedi La Rona at a public auction breaks this tradition. In order to get the broadest exposure for Lucara’s record-setting find, the diamond corporation has been working with Sotheby’s and Julius Baer, a Swiss bank that has many wealthy private clients around the world, according to the Times.

Whoever buys the Lesedi La Rona, which means “our light” in Setswana, will pay Sotheby’s buyer’s premium, or a 12% fee, on the hammer price for anything over the first $3 million, and a higher percentage of the first $3 million. According to the Times, there is a reserve price below which Lucara would not sell, although that figure is not public.

Since the diamond could be cut to 400 carats, the hammer price does not include whatever the buyer would have to pay to have the stone cut, should he or she decide to do so.

“Nobody knows what a 400-carat diamond is worth,” said William Lamb, chief executive of the Lucara Diamond Corporation.



Houston based actor Kedrick Brown @thekedrickbrown will appear in Oprah’s new tv show Greenleaf Wednesday night and he’s been tapped to star as Alonzo Williams in a movie about Michele… more today just after 5:30 pm in the #IsiahFactor on #Fox26News

For more info:



The son of now deceased NBA legend Moses Malone says he was brutally attacked outside a popular Houston nightclub.


An attorney representing Moses Malone Jr. says his client was brutally beaten and robbed at gunpoint of $50,000 in jewelry last Saturday morning. 

George Farah says security at V-Live Houston on Richmond Avenue did nothing to stop the assault and the suspects were allowed to run into the club after the robbery. 

As a result of this incident Malone Jr. is in hiding in another state because his attorney says he fears for his life.

Carl Moore, the attorney representing V-Live, says their security force broke up the attack and the men involved took off running down Richmond Avenue.

Moore says the club prides itself on providing security for all of their customers.

Malone Jr., who is a regular of the bikin bar, can be seen on V-Live throwing money into the air…a gesture known as making it rain.

Meanwhile, Farah says, “all I can tell you is that my client was brutally attacked unnecessarily and there is a police investigation and we will proceed accordingly.”

A spokesperson for the Houston Police Department says they’re still investigating the case and they have a long list of people to question in the incident.



Earlier this month, our office sent more than 100,000 notices to taxpayers who did not pay their 2015 tax bill. Those accounts are considered delinquent and have been accruing penalty and interest since February 2, 2016. Tax Assessor-Collector Mike Sullivan urges those delinquent account holders to contact us immediately to pay their accounts in full, or set-up a payment plan by June 30, 2016. This is their last chance to sign-up before their accounts are turned over to collection attorneys on July 1, 2016.



Galveston County Criminal District Attorney Jack
Roady announced today that law enforcement agencies across Galveston
County will be working together to conduct No Refusal Operations for the
upcoming Fourth of July Weekend, July 1 through July 4.
“The Fourth of July holiday weekend is a peak travel and tourist time for
Galveston County, so DWI enforcement will be a priority,” Roady said.
“This Fourth of July weekend, our No Refusal operations will get an extra
boost thanks to enhanced operations by State Troopers with the Texas
Department of Public Safety. They will be joining the rest of law
enforcement officers throughout Galveston County to wage the battle against
drunk drivers.”
In Texas, anyone driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08
grams per deciliter or higher is considered legally impaired. Under the No
Refusal program, police officers may seek blood search warrants for
offenders who are arrested for DWI and refuse the officer’s request for blood
alcohol testing. Blood samples collected can be used as evidence in the DWI
A DWI arrest and conviction in Texas can cost $17,000 or more: fees include
car towing and impoundment, bail, attorney fees, court costs, hearing and fees
to regain and retain a driver’s license, DWI fines, probation costs, fees for
extended proof of insurance, plus insurance rate hikes.
Local judges will be available to make probable cause determinations and
authorize the blood search warrants. Prosecutors and nurses will also work
through the night to assist police officers with these investigations.



Crime Stoppers and the Houston Police Department’s Special Victims Division need the public’s assistance locating Fugitive Terrance Deandrea Miller who is wanted on two counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child out of Harris County District Court #174.

Charges were filed based on an incident that occurred on October 20, 1997 when Miller entered a residence located in the 6200 block of Berkridge Dr by forcing the front door open.  He turned off the electricity then entered the bedroom where the juvenile victim was sleeping.  Once inside, Miller covered the juvenile’s face and sexually assaulted her.  He was later identified through additional investigative evidence.

Terrance Deandrea Miller is a  black male, 40 years old, 5’04, 180 lbs., with black hair and brown eyes, short black hair and tattoos on his right shoulder.  Harris County Warrant # 1512718 and 1512719.

Crime Stoppers will pay a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the charging and/or arrest of the suspect(s) in this case. Information may be reported by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477) or submitted online at Tips may also be sent via a text message by texting the following: TIP610 plus the information to CRIMES (274637) or via our mobile app (Crime Stoppers Houston). All tipsters remain anonymous.