It's Friday -- Let's Get Out of Here

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

It was the opening game of 2011, and a 27-24 loss to the Jets. Game summary.

  • This will probably be the last daily update from me unless something changes.  But the hospital in Decatur is overflowing this morning and has 42 COVID patients

  • Boom! The Messenger has obtained some of the phone recordings between former school board President Thomas Houchin and former Superintendent Joseph Coburn, and has printed relevant parts of them today.  They are pretty incredible and give rise to a lot of issues. Go buy a paper. Excerpt below.   

    • Although tiny things like this are buried in there, too. Sheesh. 

    • The Messenger has placed all the recordings online. (There will be some dead spots due to the school's redactions pending an Open Records fight to resolved by the AG.) Man, there are a ton of Decatur names which are thrown around. And the audio is riveting!
      • June 3rd call. (2 hours, 12 minutes) Edit: Holy cow! Wait until you hear who Thomas Houchin has in mind for the new Decatur football coach! 1:50:00 
      • June 8th call. (1 minute, 44 seconds)(Heavily redacted - basically worthless)
      • June 14th call. (2 hours, 3 minutes)(This one is contentious and turns out to be a wild ride )
      • June 17th call. (10 minutes, 15 seconds)
  • Our embattled and indicted Texas AG responded yesterday to having another Republican challenge him for his job by invoking his higher power. Four sentence statement. Three references to Trump.

  • The case of missing Gabby Petito is fascinating. Police in Utah released the full one hour bodycam yesterday of her and her boyfriend's interaction with police.  She's an emotional mess and is dealing with some big issues, but I don't think she was in fear of him at the time.  

    • And, yeah, all fingers point to him as a suspect since he's lawyered up but, if he's guilty of something, any prosecutor has a heck of a problem right now because he was smart enough to simply shut up.

    • Side note: That case would make me nervous as a cop.  Every routine encounter you have with someone is now on video, and you never know when it will be national news. Although this particular cop probably caught hell at home for being recorded as telling the girl, "My wife has really really bad anxiety [too] and she takes medication for it daily. Sometimes, it’s not enough. Sometimes it just builds up. I will say this, when my wife got put on the medication, within a week, I saw a complete turnaround in her attitude. Her demeanor. She wasn’t nearly aggressive, or angry." 
  • In the other high profile national case, the high-tone South Carolina lawyer turned himself in yesterday on attempted insurance fraud charges.  I'm not certain of this, but I've read that the insurance policy did not have a suicide exclusion clause, so the company would pay even if he killed himself or had someone else kill him.   But that gives rise to a legal question: Is it an offense to intend to commit a crime (insurance fraud) and you do an act in furtherance of the intended crime (hire someone to kill you) but your scheme, if it had worked out, wouldn't have been insurance fraud at all? My gut reaction is "no", but this isn't exactly something I deal with every day. 

  • There was a meth bust in Wise County but, unless my math is off, our Sheriff says that meth is going for about $31 a gram. 15 pound seizure = 240 ounces.  240 ounces = 6,720 grams. Value of bust was $210,000 per Sheriff.  $210,000/6,720 = $31.25 a gram. I also thought it interesting he said that, “That’s probably the biggest seizure of methamphetamine we have ever made.”
    Stealing highway signs again. 

  • Dear Kids: Don't be stupid.

  • Every time you hear about county officials being arrested, it seems like it comes out of Starr County. 

  • The silence of TDC is amazing. Thread

  • Good grief, Minnesota DPS. How about not shooting innocent people as an option? It's a traffic stop, not a hostage situation. 

  • I woke up in the middle of the night a couple of days ago and, for some reason, stumbled upon the Wendy Williams show on one of the local channels. I almost made it a bullet point the next day to tell you there's something not right about her because she was acting so odd, but I didn't because I figured no one would care. You still may not care, but this got my attention yesterday. 

  • Time which has passed since the Wise County Sheriff's Office has failed to solve the murder of Lauren Whitener in her home at Lake Bridgeport: 807 days.
  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

I'm trying to figure out exactly what I meant but that, but I'm guessing that 10 years ago it was incredibly unusual to see small town newspapers break news in real time on social media accounts.  Heck, Twitter is only 15 years old.   

  • I added a couple of red lines to emphasize the start and the end of the most recent surge. That was a wild and steep six weeks.

  • But everyday we are reminded we are still in bad times. 

  • Decatur didn't get fooled. "RanchLand Foods, an Arizona-based meat production company that had reached a deal with Denton’s Economic Development Partnership Board for an incentives package but now is the subject of a police investigation, had applied for similar economic incentives with Decatur in March, city staff there confirmed Monday. But that application derailed during Decatur’s vetting process." The Decatur official quoted in the story was much too modest. I would have thrown out a straight, "Ain't no way we were gonna do that deal!"  

  • It was a bad day for Swollen Testicles-gate and Nicki Minaj: (1) She said that Twitter had censored her account, but then Twitter said they did no such thing, (2) she said that she had been invited to the White House, but then the White House also said they did no such thing -- but did say the "offered a call" with an expert like they do anyone who wants information, and (3) officials in Trinidad said that there is no case of her cousin's friend having swollen testicles due to the the COVID vaccine. 

  • One of the biggest beatings in trial preparation is going through every second of every dashcam, bodycam, and interview recording and carefully listening for anything which is inadmissible. The lawyers didn't do it in Wichita Falls in this case, and the whole trial process ground to a halt. The prosecutors claimed it was accidental on their part to play a non-redacted video, but that assumes they had caught the problem beforehand. I have my doubts. 

  • This story happened over the weekend but didn't get much press. Four people were together in a bar in St. Paul, MN on Saturday night, and then found dead 65 miles away on a farm in Wisconsin -- a place they had no direct connection to.   (Ticket fans: One of the victims has the last name of Sturm, and we know afternoon host Bob Sturm hails from Wisconsin.)

  • A pick-up and car collision at a nondescript intersection in Fort Worth yesterday afternoon had some tragic consequences

  • I have no idea the context of this clip, but a wild NSFW moment happened on Fox News last night. Video.

  • No bullet point can accurately sum up the developments in one of the craziest cases of all time. And it keeps getting nuttier.  Now we learn he tried to get himself killed so his son could get the insurance proceeds but his hired gun botched the job. 

  • Random Texas lawyer news where one guy's wheels have definitely fallen off. "Just a few weeks before his arrest Sunday, Shorty Craig Barrett, 52, was placed on a two-year term of deferred adjudication probation in Bowie County, Texas, for misdemeanor assault with bodily injury. According to court records, in December, Barrett went to a man's place of business during office hours and assaulted the man with his fists and feet."

  • Moments ago: Fort Worth state rep Mark Krause announced he would run for Texas AG against Ken Paxton. Krause was a founding member of the ultra-conservative Texas Freedom Caucus along with Jonathon Stickland (retired after being despised by almost everyone) and Brisco Cain (the short guy with the big hat.) He's the third Republican challenger to announce against Paxton who has been endorsed by Trump. Others are George P. Bush (he's going to cash in on that name even if it kills him) and Eva Guzman (former Court of Criminal Appeals court judge.)


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

It was just for Evading With a Vehicle in Wise County, but he had a long criminal history which the jury apparently didn't appreciate.   He was a little bit of a nut as I wrote about here when I watched some of the trial. He insisted on representing himself on appeal after his conviction, but failed to file his brief on time and the case was affirmed.

  • Now that we are headed down, the next question will be if we will have another surge in the Winter around November or December?

  • But the crisis is far from over. 

  • Here's a "How It Started/How It's Going" Meme.
    Sept. 6th

    Last night

  • Speaking of the California recall election, I bet this election worker in Los Angeles County had a really bad night later when he saw the election returns. (Yes, it's real. And, yes, he was removed.)

  • Speaking of Carlson, he clarified last night the status of the relationship between Nicki Minaj and someone else's swollen testicles. We live in the dumbest of times. 

  • There were a ton of Norm MacDonald clips floating around floating around yesterday, and I really liked this one when he ragged on the new movie that Courtney Thorne-Smith was on Conan's show to promote. And she was a heck of a sport through it all.

  • This is a wild video out of Florida where a guy ended up being shot multiple times in a clearly justifiable use-of-force situation. And this was a heck of a line, and a heck of a delivery of it, from the Sheriff: "This individual got exactly what he deserved. And to those out there who might be foolish enough to ask why we shot him so many times, that answer is simple: Because evil can never be dead enough."   It's in the video, too. 

  • Sign in Decatur.

  • Bob Woodward is offering sneak peaks of his new book, Peril, and it has some gold in it. 

    • Who would have thought Dan Quayle would end up saving democracy?

    • Trump's reaction to Pence's failure to overturn the election was to react like a second grader:

    • The Joint Chiefs of Staff thought Trump was going so crazy after the January 6th Insurrection that he worried about him using the nukes. Gen. Mark A. Milley "convened a meeting with top commanders to remind them that the procedures for launching a nuclear weapon called for his involvement in such a decision."

    • And China thought Trump was about to go off the rails after the Insurrection as well so Milley had to get on the horn with China's Gen. Li Zuocheng to calm him down. 

  • Messenger: Above the Fold