Around East Texas 05/25/07

Runaway Mom

A Lufkin woman arrested nearly three years ago on robbery charges is now headed to jail. Shameki Maxie, also know as Shameki White, pleaded guilty to felony robbery charges in a Beaumont courtroom. In September of 2004, Maxie was accused of stealing items from the Lufkin Mall. When police tried to apprehend her, she ran off and left her five year old daughter behind. She was eventually arrested in Beaumont. She's been sentenced to four years behind bars.

Overnight Stabbing

An East Texas woman is in a local hospital today after she was stabbed. It happened near the Smith-Gregg county line on Goforth road just before midnight last night. Family members told us the victim was stabbed multiple times and hit with a skillet. They say the victim was rushed to a local hospital and is in critical condition. Gregg county official did not comment on the investigation at the scene, but they say they will have more information today.

Fugitive Search

Tyler police and the United State Marshall service need you help finding 40-year old Douglass Scott Acree. Police say Acree is wanted on an outstanding warrant for aggravated sexual assault of a child. Police say he could be with his girlfriend, who drives a 1988 brown Chevy van with Texas plates 8-3-Y-T-M-2. Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of one thousand dollars. If you have any information, contact your local police.

Gas Pump Accuracy

The state of Texas is cracking down on gasoline stations that have inaccurate gas pumps. Penalties will not be quadrupled for any gas pumps that do not meet state standards for accuracy. About 96 percent of the gas pumps tested around the state turn out to be accurate. But with gas prices so high consumer complaints have more than doubled. Many consumers we talked with are glad to hear the state is trying to make sure they are getting the amount of gas they are paying for.

Triple-A Gas Prices

Triple-A Texas says tight supplies, surging demand and stressed refiners continue to fuel retail gasoline price increases statewide that have carried prices to record highs. The auto club's weekly gas price survey released today finds regular-grade rose 13 cents this week to an average of $3.08 per gallon. The most expensive gas is in Amarillo and El Paso, where it averages $3.38 per gallon. The cheapest is in San Antonio, averaging $2.99. In East Texas, the price for regular unleaded on average is about $3.09 per gallon.

Bio-energy Bill

A bio-energy bill needed to help fund a proposed bio-mass power plant in Nacogdoches county has died without making it to the legislative floor. The bill was one of seven reset for Thursday after lawmakers recessed late Wednesday night. Temple Inland has been fighting the subsidies the bill would generate. We'll have reaction from Austin, as well as, hear from local proponents about what happens now.

SFA Nursing Bill

Another bill important to Nacogdoches is one that secures funding for the SFA nursing program. Thirteen million dollars worth of revenue bonds are needed to renovate a donated building. If the funding does not come through, the University loses the donation. The legislation was approved in both the House and Senate. Pending the Governor's signature, the big question is whether it will be included in the final budget.

Redland Intersection Project

The Texas Department of Transportation has come up with a plan designed to make the intersection at Highway 59 and FM 2021 in Redland safer. It would mean building an underpass beneath FM 2021 to allow Highway 59 traffic to flow underneath. "We're proposing a gate separation where U-S 59 will go under FM 2021 and it'll be a diamond interchange with ramps on all four corners," says David Collmorgen with TXDOT. The location has been the sight of many accidents. In order to complete the project, roads will have to be widened leaving at least one local business with a little less property. A price the business owner says he's willing to pay. If the proposed plan gets approved, construction is expected to start in 2011.

Weekend Salute to Fallen Officer

This weekend you can help honor a fallen East Texas officer. Constable Dale Geddie, you may remember, was killed last June while responding to a domestic disturbance call. On Sunday, the first annual Dale Geddie Memorial race will be held at Texas Dirt Motorplex in Winona. East Texas law enforcement agencies will make a lap around the track in honor of Geddie as well as other officers killed in the line of duty. All peace officers get in free. The race starts at 7 p.m.