Daycare Van Driver Arrested In Boy’s Death | KERA News

Daycare Van Driver Arrested In Boy’s Death

The driver of a daycare van is under arrest after the death of a three year old boy last week.

The child fell asleep while returning from a field trip. He was overlooked as children were unloaded. The boy was left in the van for more than two hours. Temperatures reached 105 degrees.

Erica Hooks, a driver for Little T’s Tiny Tots Daycare on South Buckner is charged with a felony count of injury to a child.

The daycare center has voluntarily closed while state officials investigate.

BJ Austin, KERA News

Money running out to restore burned Lost Pines

Texas wildfires that last year decimated Bastrop State Park have left supporters wondering how to pay for restoration.

State Sen. Kirk Watson, Bastrop County Judge Jim Wither and Commissioner Toby Baker with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality toured the park Thursday. Experts say competing species are threatening to overtake the Lost Pines forest.

Greg Creacy with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department says the agency has run out of restoration money.

Creacy told the Austin American-Statesman that it's already cost more than $2 million to remove hazardous trees and do erosion repairs. Capital improvement funds were used.

Watson says lawmakers need to make sure that professionals have the resources to preserve the forest.

Members of the Lost Pines Recovery Team are trying to raise more than $17 million.


Texas felon who burned wife's car gets 40 years

A North Texas felon has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for torching his estranged wife's car.

A judge in Fort Worth sentenced Roy Robertson Mallard Jr. Jurors earlier convicted the Fort Worth man of arson in the September 2010 incident.

Prosecutors say Mallard had left threatening voice mails for his former spouse before her empty vehicle was set on fire. Nobody was hurt.

Investigators say Mallard, who was sentenced Wednesday, splashed the car with gasoline before starting the blaze.

Records show Mallard had prior convictions for robbery and drug-related offenses.


Funeral in Dallas for 3 youths killed in crash

Relatives of three youths killed in a West Texas car crash have planned a service in Dallas.

The funeral was scheduled Friday for siblings 12-year-old Brenda Morales and 11-year-old Demarco Morales, plus their 18-year-old cousin Jassmine Alferez. All were from Garland.

Investigators say the youngsters were visiting their grandfather last Sunday in the El Paso area when their vehicle was hit by a suspected drunken driver. The grandfather and another adult in the family's car also died.

El Paso County Jail records show Alberto Coronado was held Friday on five counts of intoxicated manslaughter. His bond has been set at $1.8 million.

Relatives say the children and other family members had gone to El Paso for a wedding.


Lady Bird Johnson tribute planned Sunday in Texas

It's been five years since former first lady Lady Bird Johnson died and a tribute to her life is planned this weekend in Texas.

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin is opening two small exhibits related to her conservation accomplishments.

One explains the former first lady's environmental impact. The other displays dozens of pens - borrowed from the LBJ Library and Museum - and used by President Lyndon B. Johnson to sign conservation legislation.

Admission is free Sunday to Lady Bird Tribute Day, which includes various participatory activities at the Wildflower Center. It's also the centennial of the former first lady's birth.