State District Judge Jeanine Howard quickly backtracked on her sentencing of a convicted rapist to volunteer at a rape crisis center after we called her office last week to ask what would happen if no rape crisis center wanted to accept him. "She's going go back and modify those conditions and give ... More >>
With sex crimes, particularly those relating to children, the fair administration of justice sometimes takes a backseat to the urge to punish. Just glancing at the headline of the Tarrant County district attorney's announcement of a 70-year prison sentence for failing to register as a sex offender m ... More >>
No one seriously believes anymore in the Reefer Madness depiction of marijuana use, in which this new-fangled devil weed transforms otherwise upstanding teenagers into murderous sociopaths. Even some otherwise staunch social conservatives (e.g. Rick Perry) are beginning to embrace some degree of dec ... More >>
The first three months of 2014 have been exceptionally peaceful ones in Dallas. Robberies have dropped by 15 percent compared with the same period last year. Aggravated assaults are down 12 percent, murders a whopping 30 percent. There are still nine months to go, but the city is on pace for the sec ... More >>
When he gets out of federal lockup, Michael Allen Watson may want to consider finding a new line of work. His current vocation -- counterfeiting money using computer printers -- isn't working out so well. Six years ago, the U.S. Secret Service raided Watson's Dallas home after a pit bull breeder he ... More >>
In at least a couple of recent cases, Dallas cops appear to have been a bit too quick to pull the trigger. In one instance, an officer opened fire on a mentally ill man standing in a Rylie cul-de-sac. In another, an officer shot a carjacking suspect as he sat with his hands up in the passenger seat ... More >>
Why did a Duncanville police officer shoot Clint Peterson? Don't bother asking the cops.
An Arlington head shop clerk is facing murder charges after allegedly gunning down a suspected shoplifter on Tuesday. Police arrived at Smoking Dragon Gifts in the 5900 block of South Cooper Street just before 11 a.m. Tuesday to find Jonathan Brian Lambert, 28, and another employee holding two othe ... More >>
With the pace of modern life being what it is, it's become all but impossible to find time for a leisurely sit-down meal or an old-fashioned holdup-style heist. Thank goodness then for the fast-food drive-thru, which offers fast, convenient service to on-the-go burger lovers and time-pressed armed r ... More >>
It's always a thankless task, manning the counter at a convenience store, but it was particularly unpleasant for those who happened to be working the graveyard shift at southern Dallas 7-Elevens last night. In the span of just over an hour and a half, four of the stores were robbed at gunpoint. Pol ... More >>
In one very limited sense, the Dallas PD response to a pair of armed robberies in South Dallas on the night of February 2, 2012, was a success. After a brief chase, they arrested 29-year-old Donnell Charles Collins after finding him wedged between a toilet and a wall in an abandoned apartment comple ... More >>
The first attack began as a robbery, turned into a carjacking, and ended in sexual assault and arson. Police say that Van Dralan Dixson approached a man as he stepped behind a South Dallas building to take a leak at about 4:45 on the morning of June 22. After the man handed over his money and ran a ... More >>
Last January, an FBI agent based in Maryland was cruising through a peer-to-peer file-sharing network in search of child porn. There, he stumbled upon a user named "Classybitch," who offered him access to several hundred videos and images with file names like "Taboo Incest - Grampa Fucks Sleeping Gi ... More >>
Not too long ago, The Dallas Morning News promoted Avi Selk from the crime beat to the Irving beat, where he's so far proved himself a more-than-capable chronicler of the bout of mild insanity currently gripping Irving's city council and school board. So, things are looking up for Selk professional ... More >>
Prosecutors recently dropped charges in one of the high-profile cases that spurred SMU to take a long look at its often baffling handling of sexual assaults. Last night, a week-and-a-half before another student is set to go to trial on charges that he raped a classmate in a dorm room, the university ... More >>
Dominique Thornton did not testify in his trial for charges that he committed a string of armed robberies along the Katy Trail last May. It probably wouldn't have done any good. He was IDed by victims as the gunman in the heists, and police found Thornton's thumbprint on a stolen purse they later re ... More >>
Neighbors and pizza aficionados have been eagerly awaiting the opening of Jay Jerrier's second Cane Rosso, planned for Grand and Gaston just south of White Rock Lake, since word of its existence first leaked in November. It was slated to open in the middle of April -- just about now, in other words ... More >>
As he walked along the sidewalk of his Far East Dallas apartment complex at 5:15 on Easter morning, a 24-year-old man heard someone call out from behind, asking him to hold up. He turned and saw three Hispanic men, clad in identical white T-shirts, hop out of a black Toyota Corolla. They simultaneo ... More >>
The couple started arguing on Saturday, around 3 in the morning, in a house near Fair Park. The man told the woman he hadn't forgotten their past arguments, all the times she had "disrespected" him. He shoved his palm hard against her face and forced her down against a desk. She fought him, pushing ... More >>
The U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly yesterday to renew the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). It now heads to the House for what will likely be an ugly battle over its renewal; President Obama used part of his State of the Union address last night to urge the House representatives to pass it. Th ... More >>
Stacey Hargraves was pulling in $300 per week from his job in the sanitation department at Mary Kay, but it never seemed to stretch far enough to support his wife, children and his propensity to gamble and go to sporting events. And so, according to the FBI, he walked into the Comerica Bank on Illi ... More >>
Two years ago, Joey Dauben was full-time small-town muckraker, publishing the Ellis County Observer and a string of other small papers, blending investigative stories with vicious gossip and baseless speculation at a rate of speed that thrilled and enraged his target audience. He focused intensely o ... More >>
(*The Handsome Guy Bandit thinks so, anyway.)
The Associated Press is reporting that Jerry Brown, the Cowboys practice player who died in a drunk-driving accident last month, was sober at the time of the crash. Brown's teammate, Josh Brent, had a blood-alcohol level twice the legal limit when the car he was driving crashed. The two had been par ... More >>
In May, the Texas Observer profiled Josh Gravens, a 25-year-old Plano man struggling to find a job and otherwise coping with life on the Texas Department of Public Safety's sex offender registry. His crime? Molesting his 8-year-old sister -- when he was 12. Gravens's case illustrates a flaw in the ... More >>
American banks are on a massive crime spree. The Presidential candidates hope you won't notice.
On Tuesday, Ryan Adam Romo, an 18-year-old Highland Park High School senior and star baseball player, was charged with sexual assault of a child, a second-degree felony. Romo is accused of raping a HPHS classmate after a Ghostland Observatory concert at the Palladium Ballroom Saturday night. Given ... More >>
There is good news to be found in the city's crime stats. For the ninth year in a row, Dallas is on pace to see a drop in its crime rate and, while violent crime is about flat, burglary and theft are down by 15 and 11 percent, respectively. The improving numbers are partly tied to a drop in crime n ... More >>
If someone rolled into Unfair Park HQ and pointed an assault rifle at me while they stole my $800 and seven packs of Newports, I'd probably piss my pants and then go become a monk or a farmer, or maybe a farmer-monk. The owner of McGriff's Beer & Wine are not so fainthearted.
The death of Deanna Cook, who police believe was murdered by her ex-husband as 911 operators listened, was a rare public reminder that instances of domestic violence can turn fatal, with alarming frequency. So far this year, 19 PEOPLE have been murdered in acts of domestic violence, few of which rec ... More >>
It was a grisly scene Lancaster police found on July 22, 1997: Dorothy Booth, a 71-year-old retired psychology professor, stabbed to death on the floor of her dining room stabbed, her left ring finger severed from her hand. The evidence quickly led police to Kimberly McCarthy, Booth's next-door nei ... More >>
The 2004 summer night when David Cunniff took his two teen daughters to an Old 97's show at the Gypsy Tea Room rattled Deep Ellum to the core. How it all went down depends who you ask, but the end result left Cuniff bloodied and beaten to the point that friends and family questioned whether he would ... More >>
There was some good news in the crime statistics presented to the City Council's Public Safety Committee a few moments ago. Burglaries, the bane of the Dallas Police Department in recent years, are down by double-digits thanks to ongoing efforts to shut down fencing operations through which thieves ... More >>
The Dallas Police Department is continuing to explain away -- and maybe overcompensate for -- their initial silence concerning the armed robberies on the Katy Trail and the dozen-or-so incidents police believe they're linked to.A pair of press releases from police hit the inbox yesterday evening, on ... More >>
It was back in January when we first introduced you to young Anthony Blue, a 19-year-old man trying to make a go in the bank-robbing field. He was off to a decent start, actually: In June of last year, he had walked into a Garland bank and slipped the teller a note -- "50's 100's and no body gets hu ... More >>
The number of convicts being freed after serving prison time for crimes they didn't commit keeps mounting in Dallas County, with Friday bringing a rare triple exoneration for three men wrongly accused of robbery. On November 17, 1994, five teenagers roamed the parking lot near the Eckerd drugstore ... More >>
Before this morning, we had never heard of Reynolds Protection, a Dallas purveyor of bodyguards, or its owner, Chad Reynolds, who judging from his bio photo is roughly the size of a refrigerator. A very bald, imposing refrigerator. But this morning Reynolds Protection sent around a press release ann ... More >>
Thirteen years and a hundred school shootings later, why is Hollywood still obsessed with this one?
Google the phrase "SponsorMonsters," and the first thing that pops up is an item from the Mothers Against Drunk Driving website touting the John Carpenter Freeway-based organization's partnership with it. As in: "For 2011, Sponsor Monsters donated their lead sponsorship position to MADD and will ... More >>
That photo you see at right comes from the F.B.I.'s Bandit Tracker website, which we've perused in the past. It was snapped June 14 of last year at a State Bank of Texas branch in Garland, off IH-30. The bandit in question: 19-year-old Anthony Blue of Garland. Which we now know thanks to Anthony' ... More >>
Seems like only three weeks ago Sam Hurd was just another former wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys who was on his road to journeyman status, which, in his case, ran through Soldier Field. Then it was revealed: Even before his acquisition by the Chicago Bears, the San Antonio native fancied him ... More >>
If your New Year's weekend plans include a destination in Tarrant County and you have a nasty and terribly irresponsible habit of driving drunk, your boozebaggery and bad decisions can make you famous -- which is to say, infamous. The Tarrant County District Attorey's Office will publish the names o ... More >>
No doubt you've seen the signs like the one at right; they've been around since 2004. The Dallas Police Department was among the first in the country to launch the Auto Theft Tracking Program, which involves putting monitoring devices in bait cars that the DPD can track and control after they've ... More >>
Dozens of teenage Explorers have been sexually assaulted by the cops they hoped to emulate.
The U.S. Attorney's Office sends word that a man named Ennis Harris Jackson will be going to federal prison for more than 17 years for his role in holding up a Loomis armored truck in May 2010 outside a Mesquite Bank of America branch. Jackson was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Barbar ... More >>
Stealing from the rich to ... oh, whatever. Funny is the message.
Stories linking Los Zetas -- a drug cartel consisting of, among others, former Mexican Army commandos -- with North Texas have been around for years. Take this story, from three years ago, connecting a Collin County deputy constable with a cousin said to be working for the cartel. In March, The N ... More >>
The family of a dead teenage girl might disagree, even if the justice system didn't.