crime | Texas Public Radio


PEARLAND, Texas — A Pearland woman has been arrested in the drowning deaths of her 15-month-old twin daughters. The Pearland Police Department announced that a 21-year-old woman was arrested Sunday on two counts of manslaughter. Authorities say the suspect found her daughters unresponsive in the bathtub of their home on Feb. 17 and called police.

The twins were taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital, and one died later that day. The other died Feb. 22 after being taken off life support. The Harris County Medical Examiner ruled the deaths were homicides.

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — A College Station man has been charged in the shooting death of a Blinn College student and the wounding of two other people attending a graduation party.

Ronald Wayne McNeil was being held Thursday on charges of murder, two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and deadly conduct in the discharge of a firearm. Online jail records don’t list an attorney for the 39-year-old McNeil. Bond was $500,000.


SAN ANTONIO — A San Antonio man who ran law firms in Texas, Arkansas and New Mexico has been accused of stealing settlement money and identity theft.

Elpidio “Pete” Gongora remains in custody following his April arrest at San Antonio International Airport.

A 16-count federal indictment returned Tuesday charges Gongora with tax evasion, mail fraud, bankruptcy fraud and aggravated identity theft.

Defense attorney Scott McCrum told a judge that the 46-year-old Gongora wasn’t a flight risk, but the suspect was ordered held without bond.


The Bexar County Sheriff’s office is investigating what could be a widespread operation to scam fans of the San Antonio Spurs and other NBA teams with expensive counterfeit tickets being sold on Craigslist.

Investigators believe the counterfeiters may be ripping off Houston and Dallas fans with the same bogus tickets that they tricked fans into buying for Spurs games. 

AUSTIN — A proposal to change the state’s definition of who is considered an adult in the criminal justice system is on its way to the Texas House.

The bill to classify 17-year-olds as juveniles, could yet be stymied by Democratic Sen. John Whitmire. He oversees criminal justice issues in the Senate, and has said he's opposed to raising the age.

But many others support raising it to 18.

GREENVILLE, Texas — A Texas deputy shown in a video apparently striking a pregnant woman may have used force to prevent her from taking his firearm, a law enforcement official said Wednesday.

Hunt County Sheriff Randy Meeks acknowledged at a news conference that he’s not certain Deanna Robinson reached for the weapon. But he said the deputy told investigators that she loosened his ammunition belt in the struggle.

CORPUS CHRISTI — Corpus Christi police have arrested a woman accused of making 35 bogus calls to 911 in one day from a motel when she did not need help.

Nueces County jail records show 57-year-old Christina Turnbull was being held Wednesday on a charge of abuse of 911 service. Dispatchers on Monday received the numerous calls from a woman requesting police and ambulance service to her motel room.

Officers contacted Turnbull several times during the day, found nothing wrong and eventually arrested her on the misdemeanor abuse charge.

In a complex crime that relied on a descent down an elevator shaft and on heavy cutting equipment, thieves made away with up to $300 million in gems and other valuables stolen from a secure facility where jewelry stores often stow their holdings. It could go down as the richest heist in Britain's history.

Caroline Culler

A new study of five years worth of network and cable news broadcasts shows skewed reporting when it comes to minority groups in the U.S.

While finding a lack of coverage when it came to African Americans and crime--both as victims and as perpetrators--the study saw Muslim groups represented as terrorists 81 percent of the time despite only 6 percent of FBI listed terror suspects in the U.S. being Muslim.

SAN ANTONIO — A man has been sentenced to just over five years in prison after admitting in federal court in San Antonio to spending most of the almost $2 million embezzled from his employer on strippers, luxury vehicles and gambling.

Prosecutors say 41-year-old Michael Dennehy was sentenced Monday to five years and three months in prison. He was also ordered to pay restitution of about $1.9 million to his employer.