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James Dante Kings' Family Hires Law Firm, Looks For School Reforms

James Dante Kings was 17 years old.

It looks like it's going to be some time before anyone really knows what happened to James Dante Kings in the early morning hours of Friday, March 28.

Austin officials have yet to determine who it was that struck Kings on I-35; they also have no answer for what Kings was doing on the highway in the first place. And, it seems, no one has come out yet from Booker T. Washington High School to explain what went down in the hotel where the students were staying--although, according to this Morning News piece, it looks like James' father has some suspicions...

Based on his talk with a student who was socializing with James and other students in a hotel room the night of the death, Mr. Kings believes his son may have unknowingly been slipped a drug.

Meanwhile, the Austin American-Statesman reports that Kings' toxicology test results won't be ready for "several weeks."

Today's news, however, is even more intriguing. According to a press release, the Kings family has hired a law firm, Richardson's Modjarrad and Abusaad, to help investigate, and possibly litigate, James' case.

"It's not so much based on an economic standpoint," the law firm's marketing director John Watts tells DC9. "What we're looking for is reform. There has to be something in line where these kids are safe."

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More details will be disclosed at a press conference--where Kings' family will be in attendance and prepared to answer questions--scheduled for Thursday at 6 p.m. in Richardson. And, to hear Watts tell it, this investigation is one all local families should pay close attention to:

"At some point in time," Watts says, "every kid is going to go on a field trip for school. It happens."

Friends and family said their final goodbyes to Kings, who, according to reports, was talented enough to receive a college scholarship to the Manhattan School of Music in New York without ever auditioning, on Saturday at the family's funeral service.

DC9 will attend tomorrow's press conference to let you know exactly what kind of reform--and what kind of action--the Kings family hopes to see come out of their efforts. -- Pete Freedman

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