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    McConnell: 'Remember me? I am the guy that gets us out of shutdowns'

    In his strongest words to date, Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, tried to quash talk that he would allow another government shutdown if he becomes Senate majority leader next year.

    TOP STORIES

    Suspect in custody, 5 kids safe after Amber Alert Video included

    An Amber Alert issued Wednesday evening for five missing children has been canceled.

    Port Arthur auto repair shop owner says city's actions threaten his livelihood Video included

     
    Wednesday morning, code enforcement officers went to Ben's Auto Shop on Bluebonnet Avenue and tagged most of the vehicles there with public nuisance notices, ordering the cars' removal within 10 days.

    Local gun owners stress careful firearm selection for children

    The shooting incident that left an Arizona gun range instructor dead has ignited a passionate national debate. The accidental killer was a 9 year old girl who was taking gun lessons with an uzi. Southeast Texans are also expressing strong feelings about the fatal Arizona shooting. 

    Kelvin Roy guilty of murder in Vidor teen's death Video included

    A jury in Orange County late Wednesday afternoon returned a guilty verdict for a man charged with murder in the death of a Vidor High School student.

    Jury members agreed with prosecutors that there was enough evidence to show that Kelvin Lee Roy, 32, of Beaumont, purposely caused the Feb. 7 collision that killed Alexandria "Lexy" Nicole Bertrand, 16, of Vidor, and that her death was a murder.  Sentencing for Roy will begin Thursday morning.

    Embattled city councilman removed from EDC

    12News has learned that a Kountze City Councilman who served as president of the Kontze Economic Development Cooperation has been removed from from the EDC.

    Kountze Councilman Ira Braneff, who is facing criminal charges amid allegations he stole money paid to him for the purchase of gravestones, was dismissed from his EDC duties because he missed three consecutive session.

    Texas dad David Barajas acquitted of murdering man who killed sons Video included

    A man accused of murdering a drunk driver who killed his two kids has been found not guilty.

    Jurors came back with the verdict this afternoon after closings were presented this morning. David Barajas, 32, had been on trial for the 2012 murder of Joe Banda, 20.

    BISD board of managers adopts a budget and temporarily gives superintendent sole authority to hire teachers Video included

    Tuesday night, the Beaumont Independent School District's board of managers unanimously voted to grant superintendent Vern Butler sole authority to hire teachers, at least for 45 days.

    The temporary  policy change quickens the hiring process at a time when BISD has a shortage of teachers.

    Child firing Uzi at Arizona shooting range accidentally kills instructor, police say Video included

    A 9-year-old girl learning to fire a submachine gun accidentally killed her instructor at a shooting range when the weapon recoiled over her shoulder, according to Arizona authorities.

    Former Beaumont club getting major renovations Video included

    12News has learned exclusively what the future holds for the facility once known as "Whiskey River," then just "The River."

    Concert venue creator and business mogul Jerry Nelson has purchased the facility in Beaumont's Gateway Shopping Center. 

    Peter Theo Curtis returns to U.S. after Syrian captivity

    Journalist Peter Theo Curtis, held captive in Syria for two years, is back on American soil after being freed Sunday.Curtis met his mother, Nancy Curtis, at Logan International Airport in Boston

    Jefferson County public corruption task force question BISD maintenance employees

    The Beaumont Independent School District says it is cooperating with current and past reviews being conducted by the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office.

    BISD experiences a dramatic hike in enrollment on second day of class

    In a surprising turn of events, Beaumont ISD's enrollment increased by 486 students on the second day of class. 

    Downtown development draws strong reaction in Orange

     Orange attorney Lynwood Sanders has been watching development around the city for more than 50 years.
    At the old Orange Café just a couple blocks from the former Southern Printers building at 5th and Front Avenue -- many in the lunch crowd were optimistic about development of the building and the future of downtown. A company called "Brazos Urban" will renovate the building for retail and living spaces in the hopes of coaxing more people downtown

    City of Beaumont to cut $2 million from budget

    Our news partner, the Beaumont Enterprise, reports that the city of Beaumont could eliminate certain jobs as part of $2 million in proposed budget cuts. 

    City Manager Kyle Hayes told the city council during a budget workshop Tuesday that revenue is growing by 1.1%.  

    Apple announces recall on select iPhones

    Apple announced a recall Monday on the iPhones that are not holding a charge. According to the company website "a very small percentage of iPhone 5 devices may suddenly experience shorter battery life or need to be charged more frequently."

    30-year-old man gets 20 years for helping throw body off bridge

    A 30-year-old man was sentenced to 20 years in prison after he admitted in court to helping throw a murder victim's body off of a bridge in 2011.

    Alberto Bacho Solis entered the guilty plea Tuesday before Judge Larry Gist.

    Greyhound passengers call 911 when driver begins acting erratically Video included

    Frantic passengers aboard a South Florida bound Greyhound bus called 911 in Volusia County on Sunday saying the driver was all over the road and falling asleep at the wheel.

    Richard Campbell, 59, was arrested on Interstate 95 near Mims shortly after 8 p.m. and charged with DUI.

    Sheriff's Office Spokesperson: it's imperative that sex offender be found Video included

    A spokesperson for the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office said with the start of the school year it is imperative that deputies find a registered sex offender who has absconded.

    Carl Wade Lowe was convicted in 2004 for Indecency with a Child and was sentenced to 5 years in Texas Department of Criminal Justice. The victim was an 11-year-old female.

    Four reported dead in Ohio plane crash

    A plane crashed on takeoff in northern Ohio Monday, killing four people, police told ABC affiliate WEWS-TV.

    Where have Beaumont ISD students gone? Video included

    The Beaumont Independent School District released its preliminary enrollment report showing a 500 student drop from last year.

    Meanwhile nearby private, charter and public schools reported increases across the board.

    Soldier who apparently shot self, dies, Army says

    A soldier apparently shot herself on Monday at a military post in central Virginia and later died, the Army said.

    Beaumont ISD's attendance drops 500 students Video included

    Preliminary figures released by the Beaumont Independent School District show the embattled district has lost 500 students over the same time last year. According to figures released Friday, 18,393 students were enrolled, compared to 18,897 in the 2013-14 school year.

    A stretch of Highway 365 was closed for about an hour after a major wreck

    A stretch of Highway 365 westbound in front of Central Mall in Port Arthur has re-opened.

    The area between Central Mall Drive and Highway 69 had to be shut down Monday afternoon following a major accident that sent two people to the hospital.

    Off they go! Little ones head to class for first time

    Summer break is officially over! A lot of tears were shed Monday morning as parents sent their kids off to school. Entering each grade is a milestone. But, what may be the biggest turning point is when a parent drops their kid off for the first time ever!

    Some parents were all smiles. Others were teary-eyed and everyone left their child with a hug. A lot of tears were shed Monday morning as parents sent their kids off to school.

    First Day of School 2014

    Send us your first day at school photos.

    Email pics to dingram@kbmt12.com, or post them to our facebook page at  https://www.facebook.com/KBMT12

    California earthquake: Bay Area picks up pieces after strongest quake in 25 years

    In the heart of Northern California's wine country, piles of stemware lay shattered on the ground.

    Building facades in historic downtown Napa crumbled into the streets.

    School zone laws return with the start of a new year Video included

    Whether you're a parent, teacher or just someone who drives by schools on your morning commute, law enforcement officials are reminding everyone to pay attention especially when the school zone lights are flashing.

    Cash raised for Mo. cop surpasses Brown donations

    Online fundraisers for Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson surpassed the amount of money raised for Michael Brown's family as the officer's supporters gathered at an afternoon rally Saturday.

    Students say goodbye to summer

    Students are saying goodbye to summer.

    While students are trying to savor the last hours before school starts Monday, many of their parents have been out shopping for last minute supplies.
    School supplies and reminders that summer is almost over has students looking for the bright side of heading back to class.

    Motorcyclist severely injured in accident while trying to avoid hitting dog

    A motorcyclist is hospitalized with sever injuries following a major accident in Ivanhoe Friday night.

    An official told 12News that the motorcyclist, identified as Larry Lee, was unable to avoid hitting a dog in the road and he lost control of the motorcycle.

    Multi-sports complex proposed next to Ford Arena

    A $700,000 multi-sports facility could be coming to Ford Park. 

    Jefferson County Commissioners will make that call Monday.
    Those behind the proposal say it's a win-win. 
    The cost of the facility would be paid out of pocket and the county would make money off the lease agreement.

    Massage parlors staff busted in prostitution round-up

    Five people, all operators and staff at three Louisiana massage parlors, have been arrested on prostitution-related charges following a 10-month investigation. 

    The Lake Charles facility went by the name, "Asian Massage Parlor."

    Fifth and eighth graders will not have to pass math portion of STAAR this year

    If your son or daughter is going into the fifth or eighth grade next week, this may produce a small sigh of relief for you. 

    Students will not have to pass the math portion of the revised STAAR test in order to move on to the next grade level. 

    Police explain "proper procedure" for stops Video included

    The events in Ferguson have triggered a national discussion on the public's trust of law enforcement that's being echoed in Southeast Texas.

    Jury convicts Nederland man in Orange County drug conspiracy

    A Nederland man has been convicted for drug trafficking.

    Stephen Shane Hall, 40, of Nederland, was convicted in federal court Thursday, according to a news release issued Friday by U.S. Attorney John M. Bales.

    Boyett remains in jail, new mugshot released amid three counts of manslaughter, one count of aggravated assault with deadly weapon

    A woman accused of causing an accident that killed a pregnant woman and her sister has turned herself in at the Hardin County Sheriff's Office.

    Crystal Boyett was indicted on three counts of manslaughter and one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

    Woman from Orange, man from Louisiana arrested on drug charges

    A spokesperson for the Orange County Sheriff's Office Friday said a man and woman were arrested after officers found 36 grams of Methamphetamine.

    Orange County Sheriff's Deputies and Vidor Police Officers obtained a warrant for a search at a house in the 4500 block of Caribou Road in Orange County. During the search, deputies say they found the 36 grams of meth.

    Radio station causes a stir, gives free gas to 100 people

    A local radio station caused a stir this morning in Beaumont by giving away free gas to the first 100 people to show up at the pump.

    The promotion, started at 7:15 a.m. at the Shell Station located at Interstate 10 at Washington Blvd.

    Four KY firefighters injured, one critically, while helping students with ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

    Four Campbellsville, KY firefighters received a severe shock while helping the Campbellsville University marching band with an ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. 

    BISD won't have enough teachers to start the school year Video included

    The Beaumont Independent School District will not have enough teachers for the start of the school year. Superintendent Vern Butler confirmed that to the media after a budget workshop Thursday afternoon.

    The lack of teachers is based on a risk the board of managers took last week not to fill 53 teacher vacancies, for budgetary reasons.

    Bring Your Own Device set to start at Central Middle School in Nederland

    As technology evolves, those picking up on the advances seem to be getting younger and younger. 

    Even children use internet connected devices for gaming or social media sites.

    Students at Central Middle school in Nederland can now bring electronic devices to class. 

    While technology in the classroom isn't a foreign concept, CMS now has increased capabilities.

    Vigil held for victims of "police injustice" Video included

    Members of the Port Arthur community are taking a stand against racial profiling nearly two weeks after the shooting death of Ferguson Missouri teen Michael Brown.

    An awareness rally and community vigil took place Thursday night at Gillham Circle in memory of Brown and other victims of what organizers call "police injustice" across the country.

    Kirbyville woman indicted on four counts in connection with crash that killed three

    A Jasper County woman was indicted Thursday on three counts of manslaughter and one count of aggravated assault with deadly weapon for her role in a February accident that killed a pregnant woman, her sister and her unborn child.

    New Orleans duo arrested for Orange County drugs

    A traffic stop led to a drug bust in Orange County Thursday morning night. A deputy stopped a car on Interstate 10 east around 12:15 and noticed the driver was nervous.

    Abuse of ducks reported at Doornbos Park Video included

    Doornbos Park in Nederland is known for the numerous ducks that waddle around the pond. Most people feed them and, now, there are reports of people abusing them.

    Buckets of ice being poured over Southeast Texas Video included

    Ice cold water is being dumped all over Southeast Texas. The popular "Ice Bucket Challenge" is taking the nation and the Golden Triangle by storm.

    Turmoil surrounding Labelle-Fannett Volunteer Fire Dept funding Video included

    There seems to be turmoil between the Labelle-Fannett Volunteer Fire Department and the board of the Jefferson County Emergency Services District #4.

    The Labelle-Fannett fire chief, Charles Sonnier, said he's unhappy with the way the JCESD is managing its budget.

    Back to school sparks new stress

    Back to school.

    Those three words can instantaneously agitate your child. 
    Saying goodbye to summer and getting back to the books can be a tough transition time for students. 
    The toll is often displayed in your child's emotions.

    Nederland Police tackle moving day

    Amid heat indexes of 109, Nederland police officers began tackling the tedious task of moving into a freshly renovated station Wednesday.

    The police department has called 1400 Boston Avenue home since 1977, but everyone packed up and moved down the street 13 months ago so construction crews could remodel the station.

    City of Port Arthur postpones audit

    The city of Port Arthur postponed a move to hire a firm to conduct a forensic audit of all city departments. 

    The measure, presented by Councilman Willie 'Bae' Lewis, would take a closer look at all financial information within the city. 

    BISD police investigating one of their own after complaint

    The Beaumont Independent School District spokesman tells us the district has been made aware of an incident that occurred involving a BISD police officer. 

    A source tells 12News that the BISD police department is investigating a complaint that the officer sent inappropriate pictures to someone. 

    BISD announces new leader for Human Resources Department

    A spokesperson for the Beaumont Independent School District Wednesday announced a new head of the district's Human Resources Department. 

    Holder visits Ferguson amid federal probe into Michael Brown death Video included

    A grand jury in St. Louis County will hear evidence Wednesday in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, county Prosecutor Bob McCulloch told reporters.

    Beaumont Civic Center packed to raise money for feeding hungry people Video included

    Just $10 bought many Southeast Texans a ticket Tuesday night to good eats and good music; all for a good cause.

    The 12th annual tasting for Some Other Place proved to be a big hit as it drew a large crowd to the Beaumont Civic Center. More than 55 booths lined the building and were staffed with members of local restaurants, churches and civic groups. The volunteers offered up a tasty bite to satisfy just about any palette.

    Lightning causes tree to fall on house Video included

    The heavy rains that swept Southeast Texas caused some headaches for some in the area, especially for a family on Beaumont's north end.

    Neighbors called Beaumont Fire Department around 4 p.m. Tuesday to report a tree that had smashed into a home on Ironton and they say lightning is to blame.


    Defiant Rick Perry at courthouse: 'We will prevail'

    Updated:

    A defiant Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, was booked on Tuesday on two felony charges related to his handling of a local political controversy.

    Perry voluntarily appeared at the Travis County Court to be fingerprinted and to have his mug shot taken.

    Rescue crews respond to Phoenix flash floods

    As many as 4 inches of rain fell near Phoenix on Tuesday, sending flash floodwater through areas of Arizona already saturated from recent rains.

    8/19/2014 Viewer weather photos

    8/19/2014 Viewer weather photos. 

    Send your weather photos to dingram@kbmt12.com.

    Port Arthur Police find remains of two puppies after report of baby being buried in backyard

    Port Arthur Police have found the remains of two puppies as they were investigating a report of an infant child being buried in the backyard of a home on 19th Street.

    Police got a call at about 10:26 Monday night saying someone had buried an infant in the backyard of a home. Officers and crime lab specialists spent several hours on the scene investigating.

    Kevin Steele takes the ice bucket challenge Video included

    The ice bucket challenge is sweeping the country, even right here in Southeast Texas. 

    12News anchor Kevin Steele was challenged to dump a bucket of ice water on his head within 24 hours or make a donation to the ALS association. 

    Exclusive: Father of Ferguson officer lives in SETX Video included

    Ferguson Missouri police officer Darren Wilson is under fire and under wraps since it was revealed that he was the policeman involved in the shooting death of an unarmed teenager.

    A photo posted to Facebook six months ago, shows the 28-year-old officer who shot Michael Brown setting off a series of protests that have at times turned violent.

    More BISD employees expected to lose their jobs Video included

    More Beaumont Independent School District employees could be losing their jobs soon.

    The job cuts were proposed Monday night at a meeting of the Board of Managers. Interim Chief Financial Officer Leroy Saleme made the recommendations that would affect athletics, the BISD police force and transportation.

    Jury convicts Jasper man on charges of solicitation and attempted sexual assault of a child

     A jury has found a Jasper man guilty of solicitation and attempted sexual assault of a child.

    The sentencing phase of 44-year-old Bobby Ray Houston's trial will start Tuesday.

    Gov. Perry does not have to surrender before criminal case can proceed

    No arrest warrant was issued for Governor Rick Perry after a Travis County grand jury indicted him on two felony charges of coercion and abuse of official capacity. Instead the judge issued a summons, which means the governor does not have to surrender to be fingerprinted and photographed before his criminal case can proceed.

    UPDATE: Man in custody may be behind string of pizza delivery driver robberies

    Police in Orange have a man in custody they believe robbed a pizza delivery driver on Aug. 2, and is also responsible for other robberies in the city.

    On Thursday, Detectives got an arrest warrant for Devin R. Strong, 24, of Orange, charging him with the Aug. 2 robbery of a Papa John's pizza delivery person.  He was taken into custody late Friday afternoon.

    Not guilty verdict returned in intoxication manslaughter case

     A woman accused of intoxication assault in the 2011 death of a bicyclist has been found not guilty.

    Gift of sports wheelchair helps young athlete make his moves on basketball court Video included

    Last year 12News introduced you to Aaron Cater who devised his own way to play soccer, and he stole our hearts.  But we were not the only ones.

    A Cater family friend is a member of Quota International of Southeast Texas.  When she told her club about Aaron, that got the ball bouncing for a special gift that will help Aaron in his athletic endeavors.

    Port Neches house fire started by teen who had a candle on a bed

    A Port Neches Fire Department spokesperson said a fire that damaged a residential duplex Friday morning appears to have been started accidentally by a 15-year-old who had a candle on a bed.

    Mosquito in Jefferson County tests positive for St. Louis Encephalitis

    A spokesperson for Jefferson County Mosquito Control told 12News Thursday morning that the county has its first positive test for St. Louis Encephalitis in mosquitoes.

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