No one who encountered Sergeant Nick Pitofsky while he patrolled the streets of Crandall would have predicted that he'd wind up as the perpetrator of a murder-suicide, fatally shooting his wife, then himself at their home in the Cedars. Understandable that the first response from his Crandall PD co ... More >>
At first blush, the death last week of Frisco 10-year-old Arnav Dhawan seemed like another one of those too-gruesome-to-contemplate, too-compelling-to-turn-away stories of child abuse that flash across the local headlines with disturbing regularity. According to police, the boy's mother, 38-year-ol ... More >>
Chung Kim might look like someone's kindly grandpa, but the 76-year-old has a helluva mean streak. His former boss knew this; when Kim was laid off from his job in 2001, he allegedly pulled a weapon. So did his neighbors, several of whom he allegedly threatened with murder over the years. Threats a ... More >>
There are some murders that are so carefully planned that police spend months or years trying to piece together clues. There are others in which the suspected killers, through carelessness or lack of foresight, practically walk themselves into the jail cell. The slaying of 31-year-old Jose Orta-San ... More >>
Richard Keiper has built a life in Boyd, Texas. The Facebook photos posted by his wife show him at birthday parties and family gatherings often cradling his granddaughter with the awkward caution of someone not quite accustomed to caring for a creature so small. The 67-year-old doesn't look the par ... More >>
Tyler Holder, the Saginaw teen accused of brutally raping and murdering 6-year-old Alanna Gallagher, was moved from the hospital to the Tarrant County Jail on Wednesday. That means his condition has improved significantly since he was shot in the head during his July 23 gun battle with police. (Chr ... More >>
On the same day a grand jury handed down indictments accusing former Kaufman County Justice of the Peace Eric Williams and his wife, Kim, of capital murder, she filed for divorce. According to a petition filed Thursday in district court, Kim Lene Williams is seeking to end her 17-year marriage, whic ... More >>
Teena Mathis has always said it was an accident. She had left her 15-month-old niece, Heidi, with her children on a backyard swingset while she stepped inside to answer the phone. While she was in the house, the girl wandered behind the swing, which hit her in the head. Heidi died two days later. H ... More >>
After Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife were gunned down in their home last month, just two months after McLelland's deputy, assistant DA Mark Hasse, was murdered in broad daylight, law enforcement officials pledged to search far and wide to bring the killer, or killers, t ... More >>
When I spoke to Terry Pelz late yesterday afternoon, he sounded hoarse and exhausted. "I'm just about talked out," he said. Pelz is a former prison warden at the Darrington Unit who now runs a criminal justice consulting firm in Missouri City, about 20 miles southwest of Houston. He's been in high ... More >>
It's hard to fathom why someone would murder a 79-year-old woman in the home she's lived in for 50 years, and do so in such a brutal manner that police have declined to so much as hint at her injuries. But police might be a step closer to finding out who. On Tuesday evening, police released surveil ... More >>
Franklin Davis, the Irving man accused of murdering 16-year-old Shania Gray Thursday on the banks of the Trinity River, gave a series of jailhouse interviews to local media outlets to share his part of the story. Demons, he said. It was the demons. "I didn't plan on hurting her," he told WFAA's Dav ... More >>
Media outlets in Chicago are reporting this morning that Brianna Gardner, a 22-year-old from Dallas, was fatally shot in the head in an upscale Chicago hotel. Gardner's body was discovered in her seventh-floor room by the Whitehall Hotel housekeeping staff. One guest told the Chicago Tribune they h ... More >>
Teresa Hawthorne, the Dallas County judge who ruled that the state's death penalty statute was unconstitutional, must recuse herself from a capital murder case, a judge ruled today. Hawthorne was presiding over the capital murder trial of Roderick Harris, who's accused of killing brothers Alfredo ... More >>
The family of a dead teenage girl might disagree, even if the justice system didn't.
Had the council not canceled all of its committee meetings through mid-September, at which point Mayor Mike Rawlings will reshuffle the deck chairs, yesterday would have been the first Public Safety Committee since June 20. I asked Dallas Police Department spokesman Senior Corporal Gerardo Monrea ... More >>
Some random notes with which to start your final day of winter vacay. Last night I briefly toyed with the idea of attending the final Cotton Bowl to be held at the actual Cotton Bowl, but an anticipated record crowd of 88,175 -- what you get when you combine a sell-out with expanded seating -- makes ... More >>
More than two decades after being convicted of murder, Clay Chabot will get another trial. Susan Campbell, spokesman for the family of Galua Crosby, who was murdered in 1986, wants families of victims to be informed about developments when someone convicted of killing their loved one has been grante ... More >>
Back in February, Texas Syndicate member Ernesto Medrano and some 20 of his fellow gang members were in a Dallas federal courtroom receiving multi-year prison sentences for importing hundreds of kilos of cocaine into the U.S. -- using military transport flights from Columbia to Ft. Bliss, Texas. But ... More >>
Sloppy record keeping causing headaches in criminal appeals
Did lack of manpower leave a felon on bail free to kill? Maybe. Sort of.
After two and a half hours of deliberations, jurors in Andrew Wamsley's capital murder trial returned a guilty verdict this afternoon. With tears in their eyes, Wamsley's family stared at him as the verdict was read. As he was throughout the trial, Wamsley was stoic when the guilty verdict was annou ... More >>
Andrew Wamsley's defense rested about an hour ago at his murder trial in Fort Worth. (For those too busy to click the link, Wamsley's accused of shooting and stabbing his parents shortly before Christmas in 2003, so he could collect their $1.65 million estate. Chelsea Richardon has been convicted of ... More >>
Plus: Off the List, Maybe
Lisa Diaz had to save her "precious babies" from an evil world. She drowned them.
Rick and Suzanna Wamsley were strict with their children. Police say their son paid them back with murder.
The life and times of John Soldier
Investigators find a suspect in a vicious arson fire that killed five dallas kids 15 years ago
The story of Edwin Debrow Jr., one of the youngest Texans ever convicted of murder, in his own words
Is a teacher's effort to free two convicted killers a rush to bad judgment?
A veteran prosecutor--and famed barbershop quartet member--bows out of office
Confronting advanced breast cancer without a dime to her name, Texas legend Priscilla Davis insists the good times aren't over yet
Death merchant Michael Lee Davis, sent once again to prison, is now worth more dead than alive
A triple murderer freed from prison runs into his old nemeses on the way back to the pen
Dallas lawyer Catherine Shelton on her troubled pastand the Rowlett murder she says she didn't commit
Federal authorities indict a suspect in the O'Hair disappearance, but the atheist's body is still missing
Prosecutors lied and cheated to put Kerry Max Cook on death row for 16 years. He's out of prison now, but still not quite free.
A convicted killer flees arrest on insurance fraud charges
The case against Nickiolas Jolly fell apart within a month of his arrest for capital murder. But keeping an innocent man in jail 14 months is no big deal in this town.
In 1979, Walter Waldhauser Jr. arranged the murder of a Houston family. Today, he has a new name and a new business in Dallas,but he still profits when people die.
From the mayor of Atlanta, who was unjustly accused of graft, to a California man wrongly sentenced to life in a Texas prison, polygraph examiner Eric Holden found the truth that helped set them free
Bettie Beets killed two husbands. Now she's likely to become the first woman the state of Texas has ever executed