Archive for the ‘Austin’ Category

Personal Crime Blotter Note

Monday, October 10th, 2016

I was awoken this morning by police banging on my door.

I looked out the window to see who it was and determined it probably had something to do with the car that was now parked mostly on my lawn, with the front still hanging off the edge into the street.

Evidently someone had tried to steal my across-the-street neighbor’s car, had put it in neutral, where it had promptly rolled down the driveway, across the street, then up over the curb into my lawn. The perp was then unable to figure out how to get it started and in gear, so he just left it there.

Two lessons:

  1. If you have a garage (my neighbors had converted theirs into an extra room long ago), keep your cars in it, at least the newest and most valuable ones.

  2. If you don’t have a garage, keep your doors locked. You might also consider getting The Club steering wheel lock, which can be had for less than $20.

And keep in mind that I live in a pretty low-crime area of Williamson County.

LinkSwarm for October 7, 2016

Friday, October 7th, 2016

It’s been one of those weeks. Enjoy a Friday LinkSwarm:

  • This just in: The eight years of the Obama Administration have been a miserable failure.
  • Some ObamaCare patients are losing their plans, others are facing huge rate hikes. In Tennessee, they’re getting both. (Hat tip: Jim Geraghty’s Morning Jolt.)
  • More on the same theme:

    ObamaCare’s unraveling shows the danger of a one-size-fits-all federal program. What’s happening in Tennessee is only a nationwide harbinger. Every single neighboring state will have less competition on its ObamaCare exchanges next year. The entire state of Alabama will have only one insurer. Almost all are facing double-digit premium increases: in Mississippi a weighted average of 16%; in Kentucky 25%; in Georgia 33%.

    These problems aren’t confined to the Southeast. ObamaCare exchange buyers will have only one option in nearly a third of American counties, according to an August report from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. That’s a 300% increase in single-option counties from last year. Twenty-five states and the District of Columbia have approved rates leading to average premium increases next year of over 26%.

    (Hat tip: Director Blue.)

  • Indiana police raid offices in nine county voting fraud case. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • And speaking of voting fraud, the 86 non-citizens registered to vote in Philadelphia are just the tip of the iceberg. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • There’s even a huge voting fraud investigation going on in Tarrant County, with “a vote harvesting scheme involving as many as 20,000 ballots.”
  • Michael Moore: “I don’t think people do trust the Democrats.”
  • Even MSNBC panelists nail the media for obvious left-wing bias.
  • Race relations have gotten worse under Obama. That’s what happens when you have George Soros spending millions to poison race relations, and let Social Justice Warriors go rampaging through your institutions…
  • Both Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte and Donald Trump are gaining in New Hampshire. Remember that until very recently New Hampshire was considered a solidly Republican state.
  • Mayor de Blasio is thin-skinned and unable to handle even the slightest criticism.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • NFL ratings are down across the, and one-third of people surveyed says its because of the Black Lives Matter pandering. (Hat tip: Jim Geraghty’s Morning Jolt.)
  • Followup: Dawanna Dukes seeks a plea deal. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • So even Canada has giant brawls in its McDonalds? Bonus: Baby raccoon.
  • Peak Florida? (Hat tip: Bill Crider.)
  • Democratic Rep. Dawnna Dukes To Become More Officially Absent

    Thursday, September 29th, 2016

    Austin Democratic state Rep. Dawnna Dukes announced she’s stepping down from the legislature.

    Her ostensible reason for leaving is health issues, stemming from a serious car crash she suffered in 2013. (“State Rep. Ruth McClendon-Jones, D-San Antonio, said Dukes is resting at home now after being hospitalized for several hours after the incident. She said Dukes’ vehicle was rear-ended by a large truck while stuck in traffic.” While it does sound serious, I do note that “serious injuries” from a car crash usually require more than “a few hours” in the hospital.)

    But her “health-related” retirement “comes as the Travis County District Attorney’s office is conducting a criminal investigation into her alleged misuse of staff and government funds”:

    Former staff members accused Dukes of seeking reimbursement from the state for travel payments she was not entitled to. In February, The Texas Tribune reported that the state auditor’s office was investigating her use of state workers on a personal project Dukes oversaw, the African American Heritage Festival. The auditors referred the case to Travis County prosecutors.

    Then, in April, state officials said the Texas Rangers had joined the Travis County District Attorney’s office criminal probe. A spokesman for the Rangers, Tom Vinger, said Monday their investigation is complete and has been presented to the Travis County District Attorney’s office.

    “In her resignation statement, [Dukes] said she was ‘content that two signature community programs I initiated enriched my beloved District 46 and Austin community.’ It does sound like there was some sort of enrichment going on.

    Chanman’s Musings has some thoughts on her resignation pay bump.

    While Dukes is stepping down and has been absent from the legislature for more than a year, her name will still be on the ballot in November, which means that Gov. Greg Abbott will have to call a special election next year unless Republican challenger Gabriel Nila beats her in November. Which may be difficult, as the district is so heavily Democratic. If he loses, at least three Democrats (Austin Mayor Pro Tem Sheryl Cole, Joe Deshotel (son of state Rep. Joe Deshotel), and Travis County Democratic Party Chairman Vincent Harding) have said they’re considering running.

    LinkSwarm for September 16, 2016

    Friday, September 16th, 2016

    It’s Friday! Something to be thankful for!

    Its 52 days until the election! At least we can be thankful it isn’t more! (Alternate theory: We’ve all died and gone to Hell, and will be watching this Presidential race for the rest of eternity…)

  • Donald Trump widens lead in LA Times poll. “The poll shows Trump leading Clinton, 47%-41%.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)
  • Another poll puts Trump up by eight in Iowa. Downside: Same poll has Trump up by only seven in Texas. There’s no way in Hell or Terlingua that’s happening, but let’s hope Battleground Texas cons some national Democratic donors into throwing more money down that particular rathole based on that poll… (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)
  • Scott Adams on Hillary’s 9/11 collapse: “The optics of a potential commander-in-chief collapsing at that holy place, and on an important anniversary, rendered her unelectable in my opinion.”
  • Hillary Clinton has stage-three Parkinson’s disease and suffers from seizures, according to three sources who have had a personal relationship with the Democratic Party presidential nominee.” Grains of salt, anonymous sources disclaimer, yadda yadda.
  • Did I miss this from 2015? “The charitable foundation run by Hillary Clinton and her family has received as much as $81m from wealthy international donors who were clients of HSBC’s controversial Swiss bank.” Including Frank Giustra. But why would you trust such a notoriously right-wing news outlet as The Guardian? (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • “It Was Easier To Cure Trump Of His Trumpiness Than Hillary of Her Hillaryness.” “For Hillary, the problem runs deeper. People think she’s corrupt and dishonest. That’s because she’s corrupt and dishonest.” (Hat tip: Ed Driscoll at Instapundit.)
  • Email leak exposes Democratic Party Pay-for-Play scheme, despite cleverly hiding their intent by actually using the phrase “pay-for-play.” Just think: This would have been a major story dominating the news for months if it were a Republican Administration. In the age of Obama and Hillary, it’s just another selection on a vast buffet of corruption. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • America’s trust in media hits all time low:

    Well, what did they expect when they went all in for Hillary? And now Trump is climbing in the polls — 6 points up in the new L.A. Times poll — and they’ve already squandered their credibility. They can’t help her now. They tried too hard before. Too bad the Democratic Party didn’t give us a democratic experience this time. They foisted a candidate on us, they rigged it, with the assistance of the media. And now the candidate we didn’t want zombie-walks and stumbles to the finish line, and there is nothing the Party or the media can do to stir up our affection. Meanwhile, the man the media loved to hate is powering through to the Presidency, looking only stronger for all the shots he took.

  • More Americans murdered in Chicago since 2001 than U.S. casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.
  • The European Dream gives way to nightmare:

    Viktor Orbán, together with the prime ministers of the Visegrad countries and the Ukrainian prime minister, took part in a discussion where he highlighted: a whole generation of European politicians had a “secret dream”, that they can use the EU to achieve the weakening of the member states’ national, religious, and historic identities, and that all this would be replaced by a new European identity. But we found out there is no such identity that could replace the old ones, he said. He added: now it is proven that the only successful countries are the ones with strong identities.

    (Hat tip Director Blue.)

  • Someone is learning how to take down the Internet.

    Someone is extensively testing the core defensive capabilities of the companies that provide critical Internet services. Who would do this? It doesn’t seem like something an activist, criminal, or researcher would do. Profiling core infrastructure is common practice in espionage and intelligence gathering. It’s not normal for companies to do that. Furthermore, the size and scale of these probes — and especially their persistence — points to state actors. It feels like a nation’s military cybercommand trying to calibrate its weaponry in the case of cyberwar… The data I see suggests China.

  • Former Ohio mayor arrested for raping a 4-year old. Guess which party they were a member of, and guess how deeply the Washington Post buried that information.
  • Have an Android? Enjoy your Big Brother inside.
  • Happy Land Social Club arsonist dies in prison. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • The end of the Euro?
  • Austin to hire an official Social justice Warrior.
  • Local Texas school districts try to reduce or repeal Local Option Homestead Exemptions, get smacked down by Texas Attorney general Ken Paxton.
  • LinkSwarm for September 2, 2016

    Friday, September 2nd, 2016

    Happy Labor Day Weekend, everyone!

  • Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are in a statistical tie.
  • Ditto Rasmussen: Trump 40%, Clinton 39%. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • 538: Don’t Assume The Electoral College Will Save Clinton.
  • Let us celebrate the fall of Alan Grayson with a look back at his greatest hits.
  • Huge food stamp fraud bust in Baltimore. More than half those arrested have names like “Mulazam Hussain.”
  • How the New York Times lies about red state vs. blue state prosperity.
  • Milo Yiannopoulos decries the Islamicization of London and declares he’s leaving.
  • “After a lengthy period of deliberation, the Brazilian parliament has formally removed from office President Dilma Rousseff, the corrupt left-wing populist who has been trying to do for Brazil what Hugo Chávez and his epigones did for Venezuela.” This is at NRO, which has recently installed an AdBlocker blocker, so good luck reading it. If it’s a choice between turning off my AdBlocker or giving up on reading NRO, I’ll give up on reading NRO, even though I subscribe to NRODT. Though I am still trying to figure out which combination of RefControl, GreaseMonkey and cookie deletion that will block the AdBlocker blocker…
  • Would you bite the hand that feeds you? (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Is this Indonesian man really 145 years old? He does sort of look it…
  • Lefty science fiction writer John Shirley (who I workshopped with at a Turkey City many moons ago) has penned a piece on why science fiction needs conservatives at Tangent Online. And I’m accurately quoted. The big caveat is that Shirley doesn’t understand modern conservatism at all, doesn’t know what they’re trying to conserve, and doesn’t make mention of constitutional rights or limited government. But at least he’s recognized how Social Justice Warriors are poisoning the field.
  • “Alabama ACLU sues government, claiming pro-Muslim discrimination.” (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Are Austin’s red light cameras illegal?
  • The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire.
  • Newly hired woman explains how she got screwed out of her paycheck by a Silicon Valley startup. She also ignored several early warning signs…
  • Great story from Charles James II on how he made the Texans. “If you need a story to give you hope, I want you to lean on mine. As long as your most valuable measurable is your work ethic, there’s no reason you can’t be successful at whatever you wish to do.”
  • “Everyone was loving Montreal’s family-friendly puppet festival until the prison rape part.” (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Looks like your creepy Halloween stories are starting a little early this year: “At the edge of dark, dark woods in South Carolina, children have been telling adults that a group of clowns have been trying to lure them into the cluster of trees. They say the clowns live deep in the woods, near a house by a pond.” (Hat tip: Althouse.)
  • Workers tear up sidewalk to free a dog. With heart-tugging photo.
  • Federal Judge to Gun-Banning UT Professors: REJECTED

    Monday, August 29th, 2016

    In case you missed it, a lawsuit attempting to block the implementation of campus carry has been rejected by a federal judge:

    A federal judge has denied three University of Texas at Austin professors’ initial attempt to keep guns out of their classrooms under the state’s campus carry law.

    U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel ruled that the professors, who had sought a preliminary injunction to block implementation of the law, had failed to establish their likelihood for success. UT students resume classes on Wednesday, and the professors’ case will continue to work its way through the court while the law remains in effect.

    The professors, Jennifer Lynn Glass, Lisa Moore and Mia Carter, filed their lawsuit against the university and the attorney general’s office. In the suit, the professors said the possibility of guns on campus could stifle class discussion in their courses, which touch on emotional issues like gay rights and abortion. They argued that was a violation of students’ First Amendment right to free speech.

    From the text of the decision:

    The court concludes at this stage in the proceedings that requiring public universities to allow licensed individuals to carry concealed handguns is a basis for the Campus Carry Law that bears a debatably rational relationship to the conceivable legitimate governmental end of enabling individuals to defend themselves.


    It appears to the court that neither the Texas Legislature nor the Board of Regents has overstepped its legitimate power to determine where a licensed individual may carry a concealed handgun in an academic setting. The court concludes that Plaintiffs have failed to establish a substantial likelihood of success on their equal-protection claim under the Fourteenth Amendment.

    Because Plaintiffs at this time have failed to establish a substantial likelihood of ultimate success on the merits of their asserted claims, their request for immediate relief must fail. The court therefore need not and does not reach the remaining requirements for granting a preliminary injunction. Bluefleld, 577 F.3d at 253 (“[A] preliminary injunction is an extraordinary remedy which should not be granted unless the party seeking it has ‘clearly carried the burden of persuasion’ on all four requirements.”). Accordingly,

    IT IS ORDERED that Plaintiffs’ Application for Preliminary Injunction (Clerk’s Doc. No. 20) is DENIED.

    Score one for civil rights and the rule of law over irrational hopolophobia.

    Austin’s Murder Rate Up 80%

    Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

    Well, this is not good news:

    Three homicides in the past 10 days. According to data from the Austin Police Department, the city’s murder rate is up nearly 80 percent from the same time last year.

    The Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday believes this upward trend is something the department needs to tackle immediately.

    “All you have to do is turn on the news. It seems like every night for the past several weeks its led off with shootings in north and east Austin,” said Casaday of the deadly shootings. “It reminds me of, back in the 80s and 90s, when we had a huge crime wave here in Austin.”

    Of the 23 murders so far in 2016, five are unsolved.

    Let’s take a look at the individual homicides this year (at least those up on the website), starting with the most recent:

  • Unidentified female. “Suspects in this case have not yet been identified but are described as: One Black male, mid to late 20s, approximately 6’1” and 180-190 lbs. One Black female, late 20s to early 30s, approximately 5’9” and 220 – 240 lbs.”
  • Teqnika Moultrie, Black female (D.O.B. 11-23-85). Suspect: “Endicott McCray, a black male, 24 years of age.” (Since arrested in Atlanta.)
  • Felipe Leija, Hispanic male, D.O.B. 12-18-82. No suspects.
  • Felix Serrano, Hispanic male, (D.O.B. 11-20-50). “The only suspect description available is a Hispanic male who is thought to have been on foot around the noon hour.”
  • Alfred Matthews, black male, D.O.B. 2-24-88. “Murder charges are pending on Zachary Daniel Payne” who was apprehended, and appears to be a black male.
  • Sankirth Gundam, Asian male, (D.O.B. 5-11-92) “The suspect has been identified as 27-year-old Sai Sandeep Goud Kurremula, Asian male.” The apartment complex he was killed in is right next to the HEB I shop at.
  • Brandon D. Grant, Black male (D.O.B. 12/1/1985). “The suspect has not yet been identified.”
  • Joseph Anthony Lapaso, Hispanic male, D.O.B. 3-4-91. “APD charged Steven Johns with Murder and bond was set at $500,000.” Johns appears to be a black male.
  • Jose Angel Moreno, Hispanic male (D.O.B. 6-14-91). Though the does not mention it, the suspect appears to be Bradford Gunn (a Hispanic male) and his girlfriend Brandi Nicole Harris (no description or mug shot available, mainly because the Statesman‘s booking photo gallery page is profoundly broken).
  • Gerald Leron Williams, Black male, D.O.B. 8-29-1992 (aka Ron Ron). “The assailant was described as a dark-skinned Black male, mid-20s, approximately 6 feet tall with medium build. The subject was wearing a black t-shirt and long denim shorts.”
  • Maria Ferrer-Mena, Hispanic Female (D.O.B. 10-26-1977). “The suspect is described as a Hispanic male with a light complexion, 5’8” to 6’0”, skinny build, and last seen wearing a grey hoodie sweatshirt and black basketball shorts.”
  • Russell Fulghum Jr., White male (D.O.B. 6-15-78), described as a homeless man. John Fredrick Mouton (a 22-year old black male) was charged with murder.
  • “Murder 8”: “You are not authorized to access this page.” Hmmmm. I’m guessing this was the murder of Haruka Weiser, the freshman dance major at UT, which was a national story. “Meechaiel Criner, 17, was charged with murder.” Criner is a black male.
  • Juan Jose Casimiro-Paxtor, Hispanic Male (D.O.B. 02-08-1990). “The suspect has been identified as Mario Garcia-Faustino, Hispanic male (26 years of age).”
  • Rigoberto Jose, Hispanic male (D.O.B. 02/08/1977). “The suspect has been identified as Osiel Benitez Benitez, Hispanic male, 42 years of age.” There were also two other people shot in the same incident.
  • Ishmael Mohammed, Other male (D.O.B. 12-02-1955). “Nikolas Ray Eller, White male, 38 years of age…has been charged with Aggravated Assault Felony 2.” (More info here.)
  • Jerry Don Summers, White male, (D.O.B. 06-30-61). “Suspect: Spencer Frank Carlton, White male, 52 years of age.” Also this: “The assault took place after Summers inappropriately groped Carlton’s wife while inside the Dogwood Bar located at 715 W. 6th St.” after which Carlton shoved Summers to the ground. Sounds like something that’s likely to get plead down to manslaughter, if that.
  • Carlos Swist, Black male, born 01/03/1973. “Arrested: Dedric Darnell Dixon, Black male, 44 years of age.”
  • David Loera, Hispanic Male (D.O.B. 07/31/1972). “The suspect was described as a White male, in his twenties, 5’11” – 6’0”, having a slightly muscular build, last seen wearing a camo hat, brown vest, dark long sleeved undershirt, and dark pants. The suspect vehicle was described as a newer model, dark, Chevrolet 4-door truck, possibly a 4×4.”
  • So what is the cause of Austin’s rising murder rate? Possibly just random statistical variation. Possibly the result of understaffing the police department. I considered the possibility that a “Black Lives Matter” reduction in policing and/or a refusal to deport illegal alien offenders might be factors, it’s hard to see that from the data. (And I haven’t delved into last year’s murder stats for comparison yet.)

    The city’s overall demographics are 47.1% white, 7.0% black, 36.5% Hispanic, and 6.8% Other. As elsewhere in the nation, crime victims and perpetrators of same are disproportionately black, with Hispanics slightly over-represented as both victim and perpetrator, and whites somewhat underrepresented for same.

    LinkSwarm for August 5, 2016

    Friday, August 5th, 2016

    Enjoy a Friday LinkSwarm! A lot of plane and weird news links this time around:

  • Aetna is losing $300 million a year on ObamaCare. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Air Force Declares F-35 ready for combat. (Hat tip: Borepatch, who is more than a little skeptical…)
  • Islamic State Sinai leader Abu Dua al-Ansari killed in Egyptian air strike.
  • Is there any greater bastion of 1%er elitism than New York Times wedding announcements?

    How is it actually acceptable for an ostensibly liberal newspaper to conclude that wealthy, well-educated people’s lives are more interesting and worth more attention than non-wealthy, less-educated people? Everyone laughs about the Weddings section, even the Times itself. But joking aside, isn’t it morally indefensible to treat people as newsworthy in accordance with their elite social status… a paper run by liberals, who would profess themselves averse to inequality, openly treats most of the population as insignificant.

    (Hat tip: Dwight.)

  • Cahnman’s Musings has a really solid review of Jane Jacobs’ classic The Death and Life of Great American Cities and how central planning screwed everything up.
  • Clint Eastwood on various liberal whining over Trump: “Just fucking get over it.”
  • Frau Merkel ist nicht sehr beliebt.
  • Austin’s toy trains are a monument to government waste. (Hat tip: Push Junction.)
  • What Pokémon Go Teaches Us About Capitalism.
  • #BlackLivesMatters is all in against Israel. So what do George Soros and Tom Steyer have against Israel? (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • “A point of view should be based on its own merit, not dismissed by a lazy appeal to privilege.”
  • Funny or die mostly does the latter. (Funny or Die still has 95 staffers? Really? It takes that many people to produce mediocre comedy?)
  • Things you never knew about the World’s Strongest Man competition.
  • An Exciting History of Drywall.” (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Who would have won the battle between a Bismarck-class battleship and an Iowa class battleship? (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Butthurt level: Epic.
  • Airplane trick.
  • Feel good dog story of the day.
  • Behold the legendary crime spree of Dickface Johnson.
  • “Oh no! Not the bees!
  • Horrific Bloodbath Follows Campus Carry

    Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

    Austin, Texas, August 1: Police at the University of Texas were stunned by horrific violence unlashed by the first day of the new concealed carry law taking effect.

    A grand total of 537 fatal shootings occurred across the UT campus as minor disputes turned into deadly gun-battles, drenching the campus in a veritable river of blood. Another 932 students were suffering from wounds ranging from minor to life-threatening.

    “I knew this would happen!” said University of Texas at Austin Anthropology professor Pauline Strong, surveying the carnage. “Putting guns in the hands of lawful 21-year old American citizens immediately turns them into crazed killers!”

    With the smaller summer class size, UT police estimated that over 1,000 fatalities would occur on August 24, the first day of the fall semester.

    “When will the madness end?” asked Strong. “Oh, the humanity!”

    (Filed Under: Things That Never Happened)

    Texas Attorney General Sues Austin for Breaking the Law

    Sunday, July 31st, 2016

    Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is so unreasonable as to expect that the City of Austin actually obey the law, and is now suing them for failing to do so:

    Section 411.209 prohibits state agencies and political subdivisions from wrongfully excluding handgun license holders from property owned or leased by the government. The law prohibits the City from providing not ice by a communication described in Texas Penal Code § 30.06, or by any sign expressly referring to that law or to a concealed handgun license, that a license holder carrying a handgun is prohibited from entering or remaining on a premises or other place owned or leased by the governmental entity unless the license holder is prohibited from carrying a handgun on the premises or other place by Texas Penal Code §§ 46.03 or 46.035. Id. § 411.209(a).


    On or about April 4, 2016, the Attorney General received a citizen complaint that the City was in violation of §411.209 based on: (a) the display of a permanent etched glass “no guns” sign; and (b) oral warnings prohibiting the carrying of handguns on the premises of Austin City Hall, a building that does not fall within any exception under Texas Penal Code §§ 46.03, .035.

    (Wonky spacing via PDF.)

    And this is already after they had taken down one (illegal) sign due to an earlier citizen complaint.

    Paxton is asking for $1,500 a day in fines, plus fees.

    Austin’s city government evidently feels that they have no need to comply with state law, Because Liberalism. I expect that they’re about to find that the Texas judicial system feels otherwise.

    (Hat tip: Stuff From Hsoi.)