Texas Tech fined for storming field after OT win against Texas; Longhorns player shoved by fan
Texas Tech was fined $50,000 and reprimanded by the Big 12 Conference because fans stormed the field following an overtime victory against rival Texas. A video of the celebration shows one of those fans shoving a Longhorns player.
A West Texas coffee shop owner is giving away Plan B for free as fight over contraception access takes hold
Last May, Lubbock became the biggest city in Texas to ban abortion within city limits. Now, with abortion outlawed throughout the Lone Star State, the fight over reproductive rights is taking a new turn.
Businesses near Texas Tech worry Big 12 shakeup will stir financial trouble, even if Lubbock’s economy isn’t in danger
Lubbock is one of the few sports hubs in West Texas, meaning college football games draw out-of-town crowds that fill local shops, restaurants and hotels. Some business owners and leaders there worry about lost revenue once the University of Texas and University of Oklahoma stop playing there.
University of Texas president defends decision to join SEC as lawmakers criticize timing and impact on other schools
Jay Hartzell said the switch to the Southeastern Conference was the best thing for UT-Austin’s student athletes and the university. Texas senators expressed disdain for the move and questioned how it came about.
Lawsuit to block Lubbock's abortion ban is dismissed in court as the ordinance takes effect
Planned Parenthood sued to block the "sanctuary city for the unborn" ordinance, passed by voters in May, but a federal judge said he didn't have jurisdiction to hear the case. The ordinance went into effect June 1.
Lubbock voters will decide Saturday if the West Texas city will become the largest “sanctuary city for the unborn”
Man accused of holding National Guard members transporting COVID-19 vaccines in Texas at gunpoint
This undated photo provided by Lubbock County (Texas) Sheriff's Office shows Larry Lee Harris. Idalou, Texas police said Harris, an Arizona man who held 11 National Guard Soldiers transporting COVID-19 vaccines at gunpoint, was arrested Tuesday, March 23, 2021. (Lubbock County Sheriff's Office via AP)LUBBOCK, Texas – An Arizona man is accused of forcing off the road a National Guard convoy transporting COVID-19 vaccines in the Texas Panhandle and then holding 11 guard members at gunpoint. None of the National Guard members were injured, and Harris was arrested Tuesday morning when police responded to the scene. He then ordered the guard members out of their vehicles at gunpoint, police said.
Tornadoes reported in Texas Panhandle, no injuries reported
AMARILLO, Texas – Several suspected tornadoes touched down Saturday afternoon in the Texas Panhandle between Lubbock and Amarillo, according to the National Weather Service, but no injuries or fatalities were reported. “There are no reports of injuries,” and only minor damage, Merchant said. “We can't answer that until afterwards when we examine the damage,” Merchant said. Storm survey teams could be sent to the areas as early as Sunday morning, according to Merchant. ___This story has been corrected to show the name of the Amarillo area emergency management director is Chip Orton, not Chad Orton.
After Texas’ power grid failure, some in Lubbock worry about the city’s plans to join ERCOT
Lubbock officials initially planned to join ERCOT once its 15-year-long contract with Xcel Energy, a member of the Southwestern Public Service Company, expires. Spencer lives in Lubbock, one of the few areas of the state not connected to Texas’ independent power grid. AdThe failures of Texas’ independent power grid have led to some counties mulling a way out. Lubbock officials initially planned to join ERCOT once its 15-year-long contract with Xcel Energy, a member of the Southwestern Public Service Company, expires. Lubbock City Councilperson Jeff Griffith he still feels confident Lubbock will move forward with the plans to join ERCOT.
The Latest: Memphis-Houston men's basketball game postponed
Now their first scheduled game with Houston has been added to the postponement list. ___The Big 12 has announced the reschedule dates for nine women’s basketball games postponed this season because of COVID-19 protocols. ___The Atlantic Coast Conference announced Thursday that Louisville's men's basketball game at Virginia Tech scheduled for Saturday has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns. Ad___Saturday’s men's basketball game between Texas A&M and Florida has been postponed due to COVID-19. It's the third straight Florida men's game affected by the coronavirus.
Rangers probe fatal shooting of Lubbock man by deputies
LUBBOCK, Texas – The Texas Rangers on Sunday continued investigating the fatal shooting by deputies of a man who had been suspected of killing his father in Lubbock County. The Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office said it began looking for 34-year-old Chase Coats after deputies found the body of his father, 56-year-old Russell Coats, at a home at around 9:30 p.m. Friday. Authorities said they tracked down Chase Coats several hours later in Baylor County, located about 160 miles east of Lubbock County. Baylor County deputies attempted to detain Coats but he shot at officers, said Texas Department of Public Safety Sgt. Deputies returned fire, killing Coats, Buesing said.
Seller of gun used in 2019 Texas mass shooting gets 2 years
LUBBOCK, Texas – The man who sold an AR-15-style rifle used in a 2019 mass shooting that killed seven people in West Texas was sentenced Thursday to two years in federal prison, prosecutors said. Braziel admitted selling the rifle that Seth Aaron Ator, of Odessa, used when he killed seven people and wounded 25 others in the Midland-Odessa area. According to court documents, Braziel admitted selling Ator an AR-15-style rifle on Oct. 8, 2016 — nearly three years before the Aug. 31, 2019, shooting rampage. He circumvented that system by buying a gun from Braziel, who did not run background checks on any of his buyers. Although background checks are not required for in-state, private gun sales, Braziel admitted he was “engaged in the business of selling firearms” and should have been licensed and checking his clients’ backgrounds.
Gov. Greg Abbott allows only limited COVID-19 restrictions for Texas’ worst hot spots. Local leaders say it’s not enough.
The Dallas County health department reported 33 available intensive care beds on Sunday for the county’s 2.6 million residents. Jenkins said most Dallas County businesses are likewise adhering to Abbott’s restrictions. But many county officials, including Jenkins, said bars are openly flouting guidelines and the TABC is not enforcing the rules. In most cases, local officials said they focus on educating wrongdoers instead of punishing them. Meanwhile, the city reported 245 people hospitalized with the virus on Sunday, down from a peak of 360 in late November but still enough to concern local health officials.
No. 5 Kansas wins 30th straight league opener at Texas Tech
14 Texas Tech 58-57 on Thursday night, giving the Jayhawks a win in their conference opener for the 30th season in a row. Texas Tech (6-2, 0-1) had one more opportunity, with coach Chris Beard calling a timeout with 6.2 seconds left to set up a final play. Mac McClung led Texas Tech with a season-high 21 points, the third 20-point game this season for the transfer from Georgetown. Texas Tech: The Red Raiders had only seven turnovers and forced 16 Kansas turnovers, and had 16 second-chance points off 13 offensive rebounds. Texas Tech plays at Oklahoma on Tuesday night.
Fleeing the state's strict restrictions on sports, New Mexico basketball teams seek refuge in two of Texas' worst hot spots
Facing restrictive policies prohibiting team sports, the University of New Mexico’s basketball teams have fled their home state, seeking refuge in Lubbock and Amarillo — two of the hardest hit coronavirus hot spots in Texas. The men’s team will reside in Lubbock temporarily, though UNM is still finalizing where the team will practice and play games. At West Texas A&M University, where the UNM women’s team will play, an official said the school is “pleased to host” the Lobos. According to Santa Fe New Mexican, Eddie Nuñez, UNM’s athletic director, chose West Texas because it was close to Albuquerque after considering a number of locations. Disclosure: Texas A&M University, University of Houston and West Texas A&M University have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors.
WATCH: Gov. Abbott announces distribution details of COVID-19 antibody therapy in Texas
Greg Abbott on Thursday will hold a news conference to discuss the distribution of bamlanivimab, the first antibody drug to help the immune system fight COVID-19, in Texas. The governor is expected to speak at 1 p.m. in Lubbock, alongside Texas Department of State Health Services Commissioner John Hellerstedt, Texas Division of Emergency Management Chief Nim Kidd, and University of Texas System Executive Vice Chancellor of Health Affairs John Zerwas. A study of it in hospitalized patients was stopped when independent monitors saw the drug did not seem to be helping in that situation. Government treatment guidelines also back using dexamethasone and other steroids for certain severely ill, hospitalized patients. Abbott’s update comes as Texas accelerates toward 8,000 hospitalized COVID-19 patients, which hasn’t been seen since the summer outbreak.
Funeral homes and hospitals in parts of Texas brace for new wave of coronavirus infections and deaths
The number of coronavirus patients in Texas hospitals has nearly doubled since October, and average infections are at their highest point in almost three months — leaving health officials and funeral homes bracing for a potential crush of hospitalizations going into the holidays. Local funeral homes are readying extra refrigerated storage space, as the number of hospitalized coronavirus patients in the far West Texas city has shot up nearly tenfold since the start of September. The fatigue comes as hospitals in El Paso and parts of West Texas have filled with coronavirus patients, and as other regions have seen steady increases in infections that could presage their own wave of hospitalizations. The Lubbock and El Paso regions have hospitalization rates respectively near 22% and 40%. Multiple floors have been converted to house coronavirus patients, and they have leased space from a children’s hospital to treat adults who are not infected with COVID-19.
Supreme Court changes fuel moves to protect abortion access
A vast swath of West Texas has been without an abortion clinic for more than six years. That law led to the closure of more than half the state’s 41 abortion clinics before the Supreme Court struck down key provisions in 2016. Women in Lubbock faced a 310-mile (500-kilometer) drive to the nearest abortion clinic in Fort Worth. Texas is one of several red states where Planned Parenthood has sought to expand abortion access. Missouri, for example, bars the use of telemedicine for abortion services, a policy that has sharply limited the number of medication abortions.
Texas' new coronavirus surge is leaving critically sick patients stranded in rural areas, hospitals say
Texas is experiencing a second surge of coronavirus hospitalizations, up more than 75% since the beginning of October. On Oct. 28, there were more than 5,600 people with COVID-19 in Texas hospitals, a patient volume not seen since August, when the state experienced a crush of patients that pushed some South Texas hospitals to their limit. But the consequences of Texas’ burgeoning “fall wave” of the coronavirus pandemic extend hundreds of miles beyond those far-flung cities. Fewer than half of the state’s rural hospitals perform surgeries or deliver babies, said John Henderson, chief executive of the Texas Organization of Rural and Community Hospitals. The 18-bed hospital is grappling with its own influx of COVID-19 patients.
Coronavirus hospitalizations are up in Texas as some fear the state is headed toward another surge
Credit: Emily Kinskey for The Texas TribuneNeed to stay updated on coronavirus news in Texas? Hospitals in some parts of the state are filling with coronavirus patients, alarming health officials who say Texas could be on the brink of another surge after a relative plateau in September. A wave of infections and hospitalizations swept Texas this summer, overwhelming hospitals along the U.S.-Mexico border. Not all parts of the state are seeing an increase in hospitalized coronavirus patients. North-central Texas has seen coronavirus hospitalizations increase by about 30% since September, said Stephen Love, president of the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council.
Seller of gun used in West Texas mass shooting pleads guilty
LUBBOCK, Texas – The man who sold an AR-15-style rifle used in a last year's mass shooting that killed seven people in West Texas pleaded guilty Wednesday to unlicensed firearms dealing. Braziel admitted selling the rifle that Seth Aaron Ator, 36, of Odessa, used when he killed seven people and wounded 25 others in the Midland-Odessa area. According to court documents, Braziel admitted selling Ator an AR-15-style rifle on Oct. 8, 2016 — nearly three years before the Aug. 31, 2019, shooting rampage. He circumvented that system by buying a gun from Braziel, who did not run background checks on any of his buyers. Although background checks are not required for in-state, private gun sales, Braziel admitted he was “engaged in the business of selling firearms” and should have been licensed and checking his clients' backgrounds.
No. 8 Texas rallies to beat Texas Tech 63-56 in overtime
Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger scores a touchdown during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Texas Tech, Saturday Sept. 26, 2020, in Lubbock, Texas. (AP Photo/Mark Rogers)LUBBOCK, Texas – Sam Ehlinger threw a 12-yard touchdown pass to Joshua Moore in overtime, sending No. 8 Texas to a wild 63-56 victory over Texas Tech on Saturday that saw the Longhorns rally with two touchdowns in the final 3 minutes of regulation. Texas Tech: The Red Raiders were on the brink of delivering second-year coach Matt Wells a signature win over a Top 10 team and big rival. The first two set up Texas touchdowns in the first half before the last one ended the game.
As Texas college towns emerge as coronavirus hot spots, universities try to keep students from infecting locals
Fans walk toward the stadium for the first home football game of the season at the University of Texas at Austin. That’s compared to 23% in counties with a smaller proportion of students, including larger metropolitan areas like Houston and Dallas that also house universities. The Texas counties where university students make up the biggest share of the population are home to Texas State University, Texas Tech University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Sul Ross State University, Sam Houston State University, and several A&M campuses, including the flagship in College Station, Tarleton State University, Prairie View A&M University, Texas A&M University-Kingsville and Texas A&M University-Commerce. “It’s not about me,” Cook said, in a mantra he has repeated to college students. Disclosure: Prairie View A&M University, Sam Houston State University, Sul Ross State University, Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University, Texas A&M University System, University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas System, University of Texas at El Paso and University of Houston have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors.
Second team of Lubbock firefighters deployed to fight California wildfires
LUBBOCK, Texas – More Lubbock firefighters are being deployed to California to help fight the devastating wildfires on the West Coast. This second group of firefighters will relieve the first group that was sent over last month, according to the fire department. They were first deployed to California on Aug. 21., according to the fire department. More Lubbock firefighters are flying out of Amarillo to California today to relieve the first group that deployed in... Posted by Lubbock Fire Department on Sunday, September 13, 2020These teams of Texas firefighters are among several others and emergency personnel that were called on by Gov. RELATED: Texas firefighters, support personnel deployed to California to fight wildfiresThe governor issued the order Friday, deploying approximately 190 firefighters, 50 fire trucks, and 10 command vehicles from 56 Texas fire departments.
Jailed man charged in woman’s 2003 strangling in West Texas
AUSTIN, Texas – A man has been charged in the 2003 strangling of a woman whose body was found on a rural road in West Texas, authorities said Friday. A recent alert from a DNA database led the Texas Rangers and Lubbock County sheriff's office to focus their attention on Castillo, the DPS said. Palacio's partially clothed body was found in July 2003 in southeastern Lubbock County. Carbajal was found strangled and with blunt force injuries on a rural road in northern Lubbock County. Castillo was being held Friday in McLennan County Jail on more than $1 million in bond.
Texas hospitalizations below 7,000 for first time in weeks
AUSTIN, Texas Texas reported fewer than 7,000 hospitalized coronavirus patients for the first time in six weeks Thursday, but that encouraging sign was clouded by questions over testing as schools reopen and college football teams push ahead with playing this fall. Demand has curtailed to the point that in Austin and Dallas, health officials have expanded eligibility for testing, including those who are asymptomatic. Were not having enough people step forward to be tested as we did before.Numbers from Texas health officials this week, however, offered a hazy picture of how much testing has fallen. On Wednesday, the seven-day infection rate average in Texas hit a record 24%, suggesting that roughly one in every four coronavirus tests in Texas was coming back positive. Falling testing demand is also a factor, said Lara Anton, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of State Health Services.
WATCH: Gov. Greg Abbott to give COVID-19 update as Texas surpasses 9,000 confirmed deaths
Abbott first spoke in Lubbock and addressed the decrease in COVID-19 testing across the state, even as students head back to school. He said the demand has dropped off in recent weeks and the state has coordinated fewer surge testing sites. He said he expects the number of tests to increase in the coming days as a surge testing site will return to Houston. The state is working on strategies to increase testing in education settings, he added. Greg Abbott discusses bars, college football in latest COVID-19 updateOn Wednesday, Texas surpassed 9,000 confirmed coronavirus deaths as testing for COVID-19 dropped to the lowest levels since June.
Watch Gov. Greg Abbott deliver the latest on the coronavirus pandemic from Lubbock at 11:45 Central Time
Greg Abbott will be in Lubbock and El Paso on Thursday to meet with local officials and provide an update on the state's response to the coronavirus pandemic. He'll speak in Lubbock first at Citizens Tower around 11:45 a.m. Central Time. His El Paso press conference at the El Paso Regional Communications Center is scheduled for 2 p.m. Mountain Time, or 3 p.m. Central Time. Abbott gave updates in Beaumont and Victoria earlier this week, urging Texans to remain vigilant even as hospitalizations for the coronavirus have decreased in recent weeks. Watch live feeds of both Abbott press conferences here, courtesy of NBC DFW.
UFCs Mike Perry accused of hitting man, using racial slurs at Lubbock restaurant
LUBBOCK, Texas Welterweight UFC fighter Mike Perry was involved in an altercation at a Texas restaurant this week, according to a police report, and video of the incident appears to show Perry using racial slurs and hitting an older man. Perry told officers these people were putting hands on me as I was trying to leave the building, referring to three victims listed in the report. The incident report further reveals that Perry punched a third victim who appeared to be unconscious when police arrived at the restaurant. ]Perry said the man grabbed his face and shirt so he hit the man. The security guard and the first victim told police they witnessed Perry hitting the man and the first victim said he heard the mans head hit the concrete.
Warning of "COVID slide," Texas Education Agency reports 1 in 10 students have disengaged during the pandemic
Texas collected the data from school districts in early May, and districts have until July 16 to update their numbers. And about 15.5% of economically disadvantaged students were not fully engaged during school closures, compared with less than 5% of higher-income students. The majority of Texas public school students are Hispanic and low-income. This year, Texas fully funded them as long as they promised they were teaching students remotely while their buildings were closed. School districts will continue to receive funding for students they teach virtually in the upcoming school year, state officials announced last week.
F-16 flyovers in 3 Texas cities to take place Monday
The Air National Guard’s 149th Fighter Wing will fly over hospitals and medical support facilities in parts of Corpus Christi, Laredo and Lubbock Monday as a way to honor frontline healthcare workers amid the coronavirus pandemic. “We wanted to show our appreciation to all the frontline responders who are out there every day combating this virus,” said Col. Raul Rosario, 149th Fighter Wing commander. These flyovers are part of Operation American Resolve. They will fly southwest to northeast over Covenant Health Center, just north of Maxey Park between 22nd and 24th Street, and between Quaker Avenue and Nashville, then southwest to northeast over UMC (Texas Tech Health Center), north of 10th, south of 5th, between Texas Tech Parkway and Joliet Avenue before returning to base. The four jets will then continue flying to CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital in Corpus Christi between 1:40 to 1:50 p.m. and west to east over CHRISTUS Spohn between Buford Street and Hospital Street, and between 25th Street and South 19th Street.