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Update: Beaumont SWAT standoff ends with man taken into custody

BEAUMONT - Beaumont Police SWAT officers took 65-year-old Robert Douglas Menefee into custody about 2:15 pm following a disturbance on Scenic Drive, off Major Drive near Highway 105. An armored vehicle was used in the stand off to protect officers and a SWAT team and  egotiators were called in.


Patrol Officers responded to a reported disturbance in the 5800 block of Scenic Drive on Friday, October 24, 2014, at about 11:46 a.m. 


According to police, the person who called, a US Postal Carrier, told dispatchers that a man had threatened to harm her.  After the man threatened the postal carrier, she drove a safe distance down the road to phone police.  


Prior to officers arriving, neighbors called reporting that the man had walked outside his residence and fired multiple gunshots into the fence of his front yard, police said


At the time the man fired the shots, there were no other people in the immediate vicinity so the rounds struck no one.


Officers arrived and determined the man was still inside his house with multiple weapons.  The man’s actions posed a danger to others and possibly, to himself, so officers set up a perimeter and called for the assistance of SWAT and negotiators.


Police said, SWAT and negotiators made use of their armored vehicle and safely approached the man’s house.  Once officers inside the armored vehicle stopped in front of the man’s house, Menefee  stepped out into the front yard.  


Menefee  carried a rifle and a handgun but he did not point them in the direction of the officers.  He complied with all verbal instructions and officers were able to take him into custody without further incident, police said.


 After paramedics checked on his medical condition, officers transported him to the county jail and booked him in for one count of felony terroristic threat and also placed a mental health hold so that he would be psychologically evaluated.


No one was hurt in the incident.

JP releases name of man who died in fiery accident

JEFFERSON COUNTY - Justice of the Peace Brad Burnett is releasing to KFDM News the name of a man killed in a fiery accident in Port Arthur.

The judge, in consultation with Port Arthur Police, says DNA confirms Lester Loupe, 34, of Port Acres, was killed in the collision late Saturday night, October 18, on Highway 82 near Highway 73.

 

Two dead in high school shooting north of Seattle

MARYSVILLE, Wash. - A student opened fire Friday morning at Marysville Pilchuck High School, killing one student and critically injuring four others before fatally shooting himself, police and witnesses said.

 

Squadrons of police cars swarmed to the school at about 10:45 a.m. after receiving reports of an active shooter opening fire. 

 

The shooter, later identified as Jaylen Fryberg, fired several shots at other students in the school cafeteria. Five students were hit by the gunfire, and one of them was killed. The four others were severely injured. The shooter then turned the gun on himself.

 

"We are confident there is only one shooter and the shooter is deceased," said Marysville Police Cmdr. Robb Lamoureux in a noon briefing. 

 

Dr. Joanne Roberts at Providence Regional Medical Center said four young victims were transported there after the shootings. Three of them - two girls and a boy - are in very critical condition with head wounds. The fourth student, a boy, is in critical but stable condition, and was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, she said.

 

Roberts said four trauma teams were activated with a total of 25 doctors

 

"They performed very well in a very difficult circumstance," she said. "We have dreaded this day in the community, but we were prepared to handle these kids when they came."

 

One student, Alex, said she was in the cafeteria when the shooting started.

 

"I was eating and I hear four gunshots," she said. "So I look behind me and I saw a gun pointing at this one kid who I knew. ... As soon as everyone saw the gun or heard the gunshots, they ran toward the wall. Some kids ran out the exit that I ran out of."

 

Alex said she estimated about 50 to 60 students were in the cafeteria at the time. "I ran first for the wall, and then I thought, 'I'm not staying in here.' So I ran out and called my mom."

 

Cedar Parker, a 17-year-old senior, told The Associated Press he was driving away from the campus for lunch when he saw students running from the school and trying to jump a fence. Parker let several of them in his car. He heard other students yelling for their friends: "Where are you?"

 

Parker would have been nearby if he had chosen to eat in the cafeteria, he said: "Leaving saved my life."

 

Police said they do not know the shooter's motive.

 

At least 20 police cars and multiple ambulances responded to the shootings.

 

Students were evacuated from the school and taken by bus to a church at 51st Avenue and Grove Street.

 

"We do ask parents to stay away (from the school), it's an active situation," Lamoureux said. "We need to make it safe and secure. Please don't go to the campus, that makes it difficult for our officers."

 

Ayn Dietrich, an FBI spokesperson in Seattle, said the agency had personnel on their way to the scene to help authorities with the investigation.

 

The latest school shooting in the region happened at Seattle Pacific University, where a gunman killed one student and wounded two others on June 5

The chief medical officer at Providence Hospital in Everett said four young victims were transported there after the shootings. All four are in critical condition. He said two of the victims are in surgery and one was transported to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
Police said they do not know the shooter's motive.

At least 20 police cars and multiple ambulances responded to the shootings.

Witnesses said the shooting took place in the school cafeteria. 


Several shots were fired. Some witnesses reported hearing up to six or seven shots.


Police said they do not know the shooter's motive.

At least 20 police cars and multiple ambulances are responding to the incident.

Students are being evacuated from the school and taken by bus to a church at 51st Avenue and Grove Street.

Ayn Dietrich, an FBI spokesperson in Seattle, said the agency had personnel on their way to the scene to help authorities with the investigation.

The latest school shooting in the region happened at Seattle Pacific University, where a gunman killed one student and wounded two others on June 5.

Judge sentences man to 70 years for Beaumont robbery

BEAUMONT - A judge has sentenced a man to 70 years in prison and a $10,000 fine for a Beaumont robbery.

Judge John Stevens sentenced Scott Allen Willis, 22, for a robbery in west Beaumont in 2013.

The judge issued the sentence Friday morning after a jury convicted Willis of Aggravated Robbery.

Criminal District Court Judge John Stevens presided over the week long trail and pronounced that Willis’ 70-year sentence would run consecutively to the two life sentences he received on June 16, 2014, in the 358th District Court of Hardin County. 

Those sentences were  for the offenses of Aggravated Robbery and Aggravated Sexual Assault, which occurred on April 7, 2013. 

Due to the sentence being consecutive, Willis must serve at least 60 calendar years before being considered for parole based upon current parole law.  He would be 82 before he would be eligible for parole.

According to testimony, the victim was attacked at gunpoint on the driveway of her Clinton Street home as she returned in the late evening hours of April 5, 2013.  The victim received numerous cuts and abrasions as she was dragged across the concrete by her attacker in a struggle over her purse.   Heroically, the victim’s 6-year old son jumped on the back of the attacker, causing him to drop his hat, cigarettes and a cell phone.  A jailer from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department on his way home from work saw the chaos and stopped to render assistance, causing the suspect to immediately flee in an awaiting vehicle.

A forensic examination of the abandoned cell phone revealed that it belonged to Scott Allen Willis, Jr. Cell records also indicated that Willis had followed the victim for some time as she traveled home through Beaumont’s West End on the night of the attack. The victim was able to identify Willis in a photographic line up, and made a subsequent positive identification of him during trial.

Following the guilty verdict, the State presented proof of Willis’ prior robbery conviction, as well as evidence of three additional pending felony indictments during the punishment phase of the trial.

Jefferson County Criminal District Attorney Cory Crenshaw said investigative reports and testimony, on September 24, 2012,  showed Willis critically injured a young Beaumont man in a drive-by shooting at the Aces Drive-In on Magnolia Avenue. 

Shortly after the shooting Willis was found hiding in a closet at his mother’s residence, and hidden with him was a 9mm pistol and shell casings, matching those recovered from the victim. 

Additionally, undercover narcotics detectives testified that Willis sold them crack cocaine in early March, 2013.  The evidence was captured on video, and revealed that Willis was in possession of the same cell phone and vehicle used in the commission of the Clinton Street robbery.

According to Crenshaw, the most compelling punishment evidence came from an elderly Beaumont resident who testified that on March 26, 2013, Willis approached her from behind her Afton Lane residence and physically assaulted her while taking her wallet and prescription medication.

This victim was also able to identify Willis in a photographic line up, as well as in Court. Willis is also believed to be the actor in two additional robberies that occurred during the same two week time span from late March to early April, 2013, in Beaumont’s West End. 

A homeowner shot Willis in April 2013 following what police call an attempted robbery in Lumberton.

Attorney David Barlow is representing Willis on appeals of three convictions in Hardin County. 

Following the sentencing, Assistant Criminal District Attorney Ashley Chase stated, “I am very pleased with the swift and stern punishment handed out by the jury, and hopes that all of Willis’ victims will now be able to begin the process of healing knowing that he will spend the rest of his life incarcerated.”

Criminal District Attorney Cory Crenshaw stated, “Willis embarked on a crime spree that victimized many across the Southeast Texas area.  We appreciate the diligent work of the jury in weighing the evidence, Judge Stevens in making the sentence consecutive, and the hard work of law enforcement in both Hardin and Jefferson County.  We are a safer community with this man effectively behind bars for the rest of his life.” 

Judge releases names of husband, wife found dead of shotgun wounds in Groves home

GROVES - A justice of the peace has released to KFDM News the names of a husband and wife found dead of shotgun wounds in their home in Groves.

Justice of the Peace Brad Burnett identifies the husband as Donald Kenneth Gilbert, 78, and his wife as Lavonia Odom Gilbert, 65.

Police say a son-in-law found the bodies of his wife's parents at about 4 p.m. Thursday at the couple's home in the 3000 block of Eugenia in Groves.

According to police, the woman had a doctor's appointment Thursday morning and didn't show up. The son-in-law went to check on them and discovered the bodies.

Judge Burnett has ordered autopsies.

Lt. Kirk Rice with the Groves Police Department tells KFDM News "there's no evidence of a burglary, robbery or outside intruder. The investigation is ongoing."

In an official statement, Groves PD says:

The initial investigation has not revealed any signs of foul play at this time. Cause of death has not been determined, pending the results of the autopsy results. Investigators are working in conjunction with the Jefferson County Forensic Center and Crime Lab and continues to investigate the circumstances surrounding this deaths.There is no other information available for release at this time with the investigation being active.

 

NIH: Dallas nurse Nina Pham now Ebola-free

BETHESDA, Md. (CBS News) --- A nurse who caught Ebola while caring for the patient diagnosed in Dallas was released from a hospital Friday, free of the virus.

Nurse Nina Pham said she felt "fortunate and blessed to be standing here today," as she left the National Institutes of Health's hospital outside Washington.

She thanked her health care team in Dallas and at the NIH and singled out fellow Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly, who recovered after becoming infected in Liberia, for his "selfless act of donating plasma" containing Ebola-fighting antibodies as part of her care.

"Although I no longer have Ebola, I know it may be a while before I have my strength back," Pham, 26, said at a news conference. Doctors have cleared her to return home to Texas.

Pham also asked for privacy as she prepares to go home to Texas, where she says she is looking forward to reuniting with her dog, Bentley.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, infectious disease chief at the NIH, gave Pham a hug and told reporters that five consecutive tests showed no virus left in her blood. Five tests is way beyond the norm, he stressed, but his team did extra testing because the NIH is a research hospital.

"She is cured of Ebola, let's get that clear," Fauci said.

The White House said that President Obama was scheduled to meet with Pham later Friday.

Pham arrived last week at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. She had been flown there from Texas Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.

Pham is one of two nurses in Dallas who became infected with Ebola while treating Thomas Eric Duncan, who died of the virus Oct. 8.

The second nurse, Amber Vinson, is being treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, which on Friday issued a statement saying she "is making good progress" and that tests no longer detect virus in her blood. But Emory said it had no discharge date for Vinson yet, as she continues to receive supportive care.

Short Port Arthur power outage cause by substation problem

PORT ARTHUR -- A problem at a substation left 4343 customers in Port Arthur with out power for about 11 minutes today.


Debbie Derrick, spokeswoman for Entergy said the failure in the Kolbs substation caused four power lines to go off line, but crews were able to restore power quickly by 11:01 a.m.



 

4342.

AROUND THE WEB: Couple married 72 years die one day apart

A husband and wife married for 73 years survived the Great Depression and World War II. What they couldn't survive is being without each other. Last week, Cincinnati resident Helen Auer passed away sitting in her chair. Her husband Joe found her and knew immediately she was gone. He gave her a kiss and whispered into her ear: "Helen, call me home."


28 hours later, the 100-year-old died. His ten children knew he wouldn't be able to bear losing her and actually expected his passing to come sooner. Now, the couple which was married in 1941 will have a funeral mass at the same church where they exchanged their vows.


The Auers leave behind a legacy of love along with 16 grandchildren, 24 great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild. "They were simple, humble people. They wanted nothing and got everything in return," their son Jerry told Cincinnati.com. "If somebody were thinking of getting married, they could do a lot worse than to look at my parents." (Source FOX News/WBIR)


More at: http://www.fox17.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/couple-married-73-years-dies-28hours-apart-24199.shtml


American Heart Assoc. holds 5K Walk and Expo
BEAUMONT, TX – The 2014 Golden Triangle Heart Walk, benefitting the lifesaving work of the American Heart Association, is set for November 8, 2014, at the Montagne Event Center at Lamar University.

Hundreds of individual walkers and local company and community teams will be taking steps to improve their heart health while raising funds and awareness for the American Heart Association in its fight against cardiovascular diseases.

This year’s Heart Walk will feature a family-friendly three-mile walk, music, photos, cheerleaders, blood pressure checks, kids’ activities, healthy snacks, Pet Stop, and more. Participation is free and walkers who raise money are eligible for prizes.


Approximately 2,400 Americans die from a cardiovascular disease every day; in fact, heart disease and stroke are America’s number one and number four killers, respectively.  Studies show that a leading risk factor for cardiovascular disease is lack of physical activity, but that just 30 minutes a day of an activity like walking can improve your health and decrease your risk.

Funds raised at the Heart Walk will support the American Heart Association’s research to improve the lives of people like 1 ½-year-old Zoey Claire Randall, our 2014 Heart Survivor. Zoey was diagnosed with a large hole in her heart soon after she was born and had her first heart surgery when she was 1 year old.

Her family and doctors are watching her heart’s condition after two surgeries, while also anticipating kidney surgery. Zoey has been incredibly brave, and we are proud to highlight her inspiring story.

Heart Walks combine fitness with philanthropy.  Each year, more than 1 million walkers participate in nearly 350 Heart Walk events in cities across the country. Proceeds from these events go toward the American Heart Association’s research, education and community programs; 75 percent of the dollars raised remain in the local affiliate.

Supporters of the 2014 Golden Triangle Heart Walk include national sponsor Subway Restaurants and local sponsors

  • HealthSouth Rehabilitation,
  • ExxonMobil,
  • Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas,
  • CHRISTUS Hospitals – St. Elizabeth,
  • Victory Medical Center,
  • Mid-Jefferson Extended Care,
  • The Medical Center of Southeast Texas,
  • CenterPoint Energy, and
  • Valero.

If you would like to participate in the Heart Walk or get your company or co-workers involved, visit www.goldentriangleheartwalk.org or contact Charla Davidson at charla.davidson@heart.org or (409) 550-1753.

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