NORTH TEXAS-DEADLY WRECK
Sentence in Texas teen's fatal DWI wreck stirs ire
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - The American Psychiatric Association says it does not recognize the diagnosis of 'affluenza,' that a psychologist said a wealthy North Texas teenager suffered from when he killed four pedestrians while driving drunk.
The association says Thursday there is no such diagnosis in its most recent manual published in May.
A defense attorney argued that the 16-year-old boy should not get the maximum 20-year prison sentence that prosecutors had sought due to this diagnosis.
A Fort Worth juvenile court sentenced the boy Tuesday to 10 years of probation after he confessed to intoxication manslaughter in the June 15 accident.
Defense witness psychologist Gary Miller says the boy grew up in a house where the parents were preoccupied with arguments that led to a divorce and that he suffered from "affluenza."
Jury finds former investigator guilty in killing
DENTON, Texas (AP) - A former federal investigator has been found guilty in North Texas of killing his girlfriend's estranged husband in 2010.
Gary Landers of Paint Rock was sentenced to 13 years in prison following his conviction Wednesday in the shooting death of 49-year-old Richard Benovic of Justin.
Landers, who is 58, was accompanying his girlfriend in May 2010 when she dropped off her two children with Benovic, with whom she shared custody. An argument ensued and Landers testified during the weeklong trial that he fired in self-defense at Benovic when he felt threatened.
The Denton Record-Chronicle reports prosecutors argued that Benovic in the weeks leading up to the shooting had told authorities he feared for his life.
Landers has worked as an investigator for several agencies, including the Federal Aviation Administration.
Another conviction in Laredo drug ring
LAREDO, Texas (AP) - A federal jury in Laredo has convicted a South Texas man on four counts in relation to a drug trafficking organization that moved cocaine from the border to other parts of the U.S.
The U.S. Attorney's office said Thursday that the jury returned a guilty verdict on four of five counts against 38-year-old Oscar DeLeon late Wednesday. The charges included conspiracies to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and to commit money laundering. DeLeon faces up to 20 years in prison for the money laundering count.
DeLeon was the latest of 38 people convicted in the investigation into a Laredo-based drug trafficking organization. During the investigation, agents seized more than $7.5 million in drug proceeds and a ledger that tracked the distribution of about 12,500 kilograms of cocaine.
EL PASO-SCHOOL CHEATING
Feds continue mixed messages on El Paso probe
EL PASO, Texas (AP) - The U.S. Department of Education has added a lack of resources to its reasons for not pursuing a civil rights investigation related to the El Paso Independent School District cheating scandal.
Agency spokeswoman Dorie Nolt told the El Paso Times that in the past year the Office of Civil Rights received nearly 10,000 complaints while staffing levels are at their lowest level.
Nolt said that since the office had no indication El Paso students were still being denied an education based on their national origin, additional investigation would not be a good use of resources.
The agency told U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-El Paso last week that policy prohibited investigating alleged violations that were more than 180 days old. Another agency official later said that was not the case.
UT RIO GRANDE VALLEY
'UT Rio Grande Valley' name approved by regents
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Two recently merged University of Texas campuses along the southern border will be named the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.
The UT System Board of Regents on Thursday unanimously approved the name for the campus, which will combine UT Brownsville and UT Pan American.
The newly combined regional university, including a medical school, is expected to begin classes in the fall of 2015.
Other proposed names included University of Texas South and University of Texas International.
Federal agents raid S Texas housing authority
LA JOYA, Texas (AP) - Federal agents have raided the offices of a South Texas housing authority and the home of its director.
Agents from the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of the Inspector General and its counterpart at the Department of Homeland Security raided the La Joya Housing Authority offices Wednesday after first stopping at the home of authority executive director Juan Jose "J.J." Garza.
The McAllen Monitor reports that a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's office declined to comment on the investigation. Agents were scene looking through boxes of documents in Garza's garage and later taking boxes of documents from the housing authority offices.
Garza, who is also a member of the La Joya Independent School District board of trustees, was home at the time and declined to comment.
Texas' Brown mum on future amid speculation
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Texas coach Mack Brown isn't saying whether the Alamo Bowl will be his final game with the Longhorns amid intense speculation about his future.
Brown said Thursday he has yet to talk with new Texas Athletic Director Steve Patterson and university president Bill Powers about his job. He deflected several other questions about his future during a news conference about Texas' bowl game against Oregon on Dec. 30.
Brown acknowledged the Longhorns (8-4) didn't finish how they wanted after starting the season talking about competing for a national championship.
Joe Jamail, Brown's longtime friend and attorney, said this week that Brown's future is still up to the Texas coach.
Brown won a national championship in 2005, but fan frustration has mounted after a string of disappointing seasons.
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