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Donna, TX is the site of a military encampment for troops supporting the Border Patrol. 11/10/18
Carson Frame / Texas Public Radio

Updated 5:25 p.m.

A U.S. Border Patrol agent who confessed to shooting four women in the head and leaving their bodies on rural Texas roadsides now faces the death penalty, a prosecutor said Wednesday.


Former President George H.W. Bush is being honored with funeral services at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. The 41st president will be eulogized by his son, former President George W. Bush, as well as a former U.S. senator and a former Canadian prime minister. Dozens of U.S. and world leaders are expected to attend the service.

State Executes Fourth Member Of 'Texas 7' Prison Escapees

Dec 5, 2018
Jack Morgan / Texas Public Radio

Joseph Garcia was four years into a 50-year sentence for a 1996 Bexar County murder when he joined six other inmates who escaped prison, went on the run and killed Irving Police officer Aubrey Hawkins in a Christmas Eve robbery.

Texas executed the 47-year-old Garcia on Tuesday, almost 18 years after he and the other inmates known as the "Texas Seven" construed a detailed plan to break out of the Connally Unit in Karnes County. On the afternoon of Dec. 13, 2000, the seven men overpowered prison workers, took their uniforms, stole 14 handguns, a shotgun, an AR-15 rifle and more than 100 rounds of ammunition before fleeing north in a prison truck.

Nov. 28, 2018 Huntsville
Jack Morgan / Texas Public Radio

There are two big letters “D" and "R” on the back of Joseph Garcia’s white prison uniform — they stand for Death Row. Underneath, he’s wearing a burnt orange sweatshirt. The San Antonio native is a fan of the University of Texas Longhorns. Recently, Garcia has been having a tough time sleeping because his death day is coming up.

Jack Morgan / Texas Public Radio

A San Antonio man is set to die by lethal injection on Tuesday for a murder he didn’t actually commit. As part of the notorious “Texas 7” escape, Joseph Garcia was convicted and sentenced to die under a controversial law some say is unconstitutional.


Jack Morgan / Texas Public Radio

Joseph Garcia sits on Texas' death row after he was convicted of the murder of Irving Police Officer Aubrey Hawkins.

On this episode of "Texas Matters," we talk to Garcia at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice in Livingston, just outside of Huntsville, where he is scheduled to be executed on Dec. 4. We also talk to Jeff Spivey, chief of the Irving Police Department, in remembrance of Hawkins.

More than 771 million people passed through airport security across the country last year. And mixed in among the liquids and wrapped presents, Transportation Security Administration agents are finding something else in passengers’ carry-ons: thousands of loaded guns.

Texans in the rural counties that make up the vast majority of the state’s geography are overwhelmingly happy with their quality of life, about their public schools and the quality of the natural environment around them, according to the 2018 Future of Rural Texas Poll released this week in connection with The Future of Rural Texas: A Texas Tribune Symposium held in College Station.

Dimmit County is in Southwest Texas, on the border with Mexico. It was once occupied by the Comanche until they were driven out by the Texas Rangers. The county was created by Texas in 1858 by taking pieces of Bexar, Webb, Maverick and Uvalde counties and named it after the Texas revolutionary Phil Dimitt – but the law misspelled his name.

The land is mostly flat with lots of brush, sandy loam soil.  It’s called the Wild Horse Desert. Today Dimmit county has a population of just over two thousand .

Virginia Finster / Contributed Photo

It has been one year since a gunman killed more than two dozen people during a Sunday service at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs.

On Sunday, people in Sutherland Springs gathered at the church to remember their friends and family. The temporary sanctuary was full and people in an overflow tent watched and prayed along as the sermon was delivered.