Five stories North Texas is talking about: Does the Aryan Brotherhood play into the investigation of the deaths of the Kaufman County D.A. and his wife?, Hillary Clinton scheds her first paid speaking gig in North Texas and more.
The shooting deaths of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife Cynthia shook North Texas residents over the holiday weekend. The news is especially jarring coming just two months after assistant D.A. Mark Haase was killed while walking to work.
Investigators and media are fishing for connections: A timeline compiled by the New York Times sorts the events leading up to this weekend's events, including last month's killing of Tom Clements, director of Colorado's prisons. The man suspected of shooting Clements was killed two days later in a shootout with Texas police in Decatur, northwest of Fort Worth.
The Times timeline points out a number of convictions involving the Aryan Brotherhood prison gang. But KERA’s Bill Zeeble reports that Kaufman County Sheriff David Byrnes has stayed away from saying whether the deaths are connected.
- As Hillary Clinton’s “transition office” comes together, she joins her husband and former Vice President Dick Cheney on the Harry Walker Agency’s roster. And her first paid appearance, post-Secretary of State? It'll be right here in Las Colinas, for the National Multi Housing Council's board of directors meeting on April 24. (She and her husband will be in town for the Bush Presidential Center's dedication the next day.) Supporters are watching Hillary's every move for signs of a 2016 presidential bid – what some say is the best chance to get a woman in the top job at the White House. [NY Times]
- First Baptist Dallas was ready to welcome extra worshippers for Easter Sunday this year. The 145-year-old church debuted its new $130 million campus, complete with glass bridge, five-story family center and 150-foot IMAX-caliber screen. Church leaders stress the new digs serve a membership that skews younger than many imagine. Accordingly, WFAA’s Shon Gables found some children awed by the 3,000-seat auditorium. "Not only is it new and modern, I think it better reflects the majesty -- the majesty of God," said 15-year-old Savannah Duncan.
- While First Baptist celebrated the new this Easter, one Bishop Arts District shop kept right on preserving the old. The Book Doctor’s Candice McKay restores aged Bibles, cookbooks and children’s books, some more than a century old. She found palm leaves stuck between pages as she does each holiday, she tells the New York Times, and it's items like those that make her job particularly special:
“We just did a big book for a guy whose father had been a P.O.W. in the Pacific Theater during World War II,” Ms. McKay recalled. It was a Bible “wrapped together” with his letters home. “They were hard, really emotional letters. He thought he would die there. He was there for four years. He would talk about his feelings, and it’s sort of surprising coming from a World War II guy.”
- It’s officially twister season again. A year after North Texas was pillaged by more than 12 tornadoes, Lancaster is still recovering slowly. This isn’t the first time the city turned over after a massive tornado event. Residents remember the “Reflect, Rebuild, Rejoice” years after 1994’s twister. Three people died in that storm. Officials say it’s a wonder no lives were lost last year. They credit technology – and experience – for the difference this time around in a debriefing for the Dallas Morning News.