Good Morning East Texas Headlines 01-21-10


Coming up on Good Morning East Texas: It will be a day to survey the damage and begin cleaning up for many East Texans, after a line of severe thunderstorms blew through Wednesday night. Several businesses were damaged in Canton and some homes were destroyed. So far, there are no reports of injuries.

A pair of Good Samaritans called 9-1-1 when they saw smoke coming from an East Texas Church. Thanks to their quick action, firefighters were able to put out the blaze before it did too much damage…and investigators may be able to pull a valuable clue from this blaze.

He's looking forward to the chance to join the U.S. Air Force, as well as the chance to find his own "forever family". We'll meet Thomas in today's "Gift of Love". 


After a very stormy evening, a much quieter and nicer day is in store for us today.  Drier air moving in from the west will allow temperatures to warm into the lower 70s this afternoon with mostly sunny skies.  The sunny skies and unseasonably warm temperatures will also continue for Friday as well.


Reports of tornadoes, lots of hail

Calls from East Texans have come in, reporting several sightings of tornadoes on the ground. That said, the tornado service has not yet confirmed any tornadoes.

UPDATE: 7 church fires in 3 weeks being investigated

New Year's Day, the church fires across East Texas began. Now, more than 30 ATF agents are sifting through the churches that have burned, doubling a $5,000 reward to $10,000 for any information leading to an arrest.

The mind of an arsonist

As the number of church fires grow, a big concern with some East Texans is why would someone do this?


KABUL (AP) - NATO is reporting that four militants have been killed in a raid in Afghanistan, but villagers say the dead are civilians. NATO says the raid targeted a Taliban commander. A coalition statement says one of the dead was a young man who grabbed a soldier's weapon.

ISLAMABAD (AP) - Defense Secretary Robert Gates is meeting with Pakistani officials today to explain the U.S. war strategy in Afghanistan. Gates also has an essay published in a Pakistani newspaper. In it, he talks up the need to keep pressure on militants on both sides of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) - In Haiti, workers have been carving out mass graves for earthquake victims on a hillside north of the capital. Elsewhere, medical teams are warning of possible outbreaks of diarrhea and other diseases among the hundreds of thousands of quake survivors living in overcrowded camps.

BOSTON (AP) - Two days after his stunning Senate win, Massachusetts Republican Sen.-elect Scott Brown is heading to Washington. His schedule includes a meeting with his future state partner, Sen. John Kerry. The time of Brown's swearing-in remains a question.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal investigators are wrapping up a 16-month investigation into a deadly 2008 commuter train crash in a Los Angeles suburb. The collision killed 25 people and injured at least 130. The probe found that a train engineer was sending and receiving text messages shortly before the crash.

WACO, Texas (AP) - A jury in Waco has convicted a former Texas minister of killing his wife in 2006. Matt Baker has maintained it was a suicide, but his ex-mistress testified he told her how he drugged and smothered his wife and typed a suicide note. Baker faces up to life in prison.

BELLVILLE, Texas (AP) - A 20-year-old man charged with capital murder in the shooting deaths of five relatives in Bellville is being held on a $1 million bond. Maron Thomas is accused in the deaths of his mother, stepfather, sister, brother and niece, whose bodies were found Sunday.

McALLEN, Texas (AP) - A south Texas grand jury has indicted a 20-year-old man on a murder charge in the death of the executive director of the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art. Ernesto Ivan Martinez is suspected of killing Barry Horn, who was stabbed to death at home in October.

DALLAS (AP) - Thunderstorms and high winds in east Texas have caused widespread damage, but no serious injuries have been reported. A National Weather Service team will be sent to the area today to determine whether there were tornadoes yesterday.