Local News Local News en-us Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Thu, 21 Aug 2014 14:08:00 GMT Synapse CMS 10 144 25 Attorney Accused of Trying To Have Witness Killed Local News Thu, 21 Aug 2014 7:36:14 AM Attorney Accused of Trying To Have Witness Killed

CORPUS CHRISTI - Another local attorney is in more legal trouble.

Police arrested Paul Andrews on suspicion of trying to get a witness killed.

That witness was set to testify against Andrews on felony charges of barratry.

In May, Andrews and his law firm partner were indicted on allegations they illegally solicited clients in connection to a 2011 lawsuit.

Andrews now faces up to 99-years in prison.


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CCPD Looking For Wanted Sex Offender Local News Thu, 21 Aug 2014 3:41:48 AM CCPD Looking For Wanted Sex Offender

CORPUS CHRISTI - Corpus Christi Police Department needs your help to find a wanted sex offender.

Justin Knight, 24 year old, is a registered sex offender and is wanted on a failure to appear on an indecency with a child charge.

Knight is 5'4" and has brown hair and eyes.

If you have seen him or know his whereabouts call Crime Stoppers at 888-TIPS.


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David Bonilla Headed To Prison Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 6:17:37 PM Bart Bedsole - David Bonilla Headed To Prison

CORPUS CHRISTI - Former attorney David Bonilla is now at the McKinzie Jail Annex and will soon head to prison after violating his probation.

Three years ago, Bonilla was convicted of Theft and Misappropriation Of Fiduciary Property, related to withholding money owed to his clients.

He avoided prison at that time, receiving only probation.

He was also disbarred, preventing him from working as an attorney.

But recent complaints to the local bar association lead members of the association to contact the District Attorney, who called on CCPD to investigate the claims.

Detectives found he had violated in probation in two ways.

According to court documents, Bonilla "admitted to a Corpus Christi Police Department detective that he consumed alcohol on June 10, 2014."

The document also states Bonilla "admitted to a Corpus Christi Police Department Detective that he practiced law on October 15, 2013."

Consuming alcohol and holding himself out as an attorney were both restrictions included in his probation terms.

At Thursday's revocation hearing, Bonilla plead true to both allegations, in exchange for three 10-year sentences that will be served concurrently.

Bonilla said nothing at the hearing about how or why he violated his probation, but 319th District Court Judge David Stith addressed him directly before dismissing him.

"We've known each other, I've known your family for a long time," said Stith, "and I don't sentence lightly, for sure, especially in a case like this. I want you to know there has been a lot of phones calls and sentiments from the community, both for and against you, but I've got to handle this case the same as how I handle any case, you understand that?"

Bonilla answered yes.

It's not clear exactly how much time Bonilla will have to serve before he is eligible for parole.

According to a spokesman with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, an inmate only has to serve a fourth of their sentence for these particular crimes.

That would be two and a half years.

However, Bonilla can also reduce his sentence with things like good behavior and working at his correctional facility.

So if he behaves, the total prison time could be between 1-2 years.

In the meantime, he remains at the county jail annex, surrounded by all other offenders in "general population".

He is expected to remain there for a few weeks while his paperwork is finalized, and then transferred to an unspecified correctional facility.

The Bonilla family declined to issue any statement after the hearing.


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Wind Farm at Chapman Ranch Could Pose a Public Safety Hazzard Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 5:39:29 PM Caroline Flores Wind Farm at Chapman Ranch Could Pose a Public Safety Hazzard

CORPUS CHRISTI - The battle over the wind farm in the Chapman Ranch area continues. Now the general manager of a local television station is saying the wind farm poses a public safety issue.

The main public safety issues all broadcast groups in this area are worried about, deals with weather tracking.

The National Weather Service radar is out near the airport. That is where our local meteorologists get their up to date weather readings.

"This proposed wind farm would block about a 30 degree view of their radar to the south. Which is exactly where hurricane Brett came to shore several years ago," said KEDT President and General Manager Don Dunlap.

"Bottom line being is that if there was some storm activity down here to the south of us and it was headed toward the city, we wouldn't be able to get an accurate reading on what those storms were doing. And thus they would pop up over the city before we knew about them," said KRIS 6 Chief Meteorologist Dale Nelson.

The wind farm could also affect how all stations cover the news during a natural disaster. Because of the location of the transmission towers to the wind farm, there is a chance no local news station will be able to have a live report in Flour Bluff and Padre Island.

That's not where the problems end. There's one more that would affect viewers from the Southside of Corpus Christi to Padre Island.

"Would see in their television set uh where the picture freezes and blocks and the audio skips and stops," said Dunlap.

Dunlap and KRIS 6 General Manager, Greg McAlister, have urged county leaders to stop construction of the wind farm.

"We're not against alternative energy, windfarms. But this is just a very poor location for this for public safety reasons," said Dunlap.

Dunlap says all area broadcasters support the city's proposed annexation in the Chapman Ranch area, in an effort to block the wind farm.

No additional comments from APEX officials. In fact, they've told us they have nothing further to say until the issue has resolved.


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KRIS 6 PM Team Takes Ice Bucket Challenge Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 5:36:05 PM Stephania Jimenez - KRIS 6 PM Team Takes Ice Bucket Challenge

CORPUS CHRISTI -Your KRIS 6 evening news team couldn't resist; on Tuesday night, Bart Bedsole, Jennifer Lira, Lee Sausley, Alan Harwell, Dale Nelson and Stephania Jimenez took the Ice Bucket Challenge.

The team did it to raise awareness for the ALS Association, which helps fight Lou Gherig's disease. They invite the community to take the challenge, donate money to the ALS Association, or both!

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6 Investigates Follow-up: County has to Wait Again to Honor Local Family Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 4:54:16 PM Andrew Ellison - 6 Investigates Follow-up: County has to Wait Again to Honor Local Family

CORPUS CHRISTI - The Lopez family was a no-show in Commissioners Court today.

This is the same family the county has been trying to honor for weeks.

They own and operate Majic 104.9, and were supposed to be honored for 25 years of community service in the last Commissioners Court meeting a couple weeks ago.

The decision to honor the family came weeks before a recent KRIS 6 News investigation into decades worth of unpaid property taxes.

As we reported, the county tax assessor discovered the family had 11 delinquent accounts, adding up to nearly $320,000.

Many of the accounts had been past due since the 1990's.

Since then, the family has paid over $99,000 towards the delinquent accounts, and will have 36 months to pay the remaining $219,000.

The Commissioners Court has rescheduled their planned recognition of the Lopez family for their next meeting in a couple weeks.

County Judge Lloyd Neal says he was notified yesterday that the family wouldn't be attending today, but he says he was not given a reason.


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Judge: Lifesaving Law Will Be Put To Use Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 4:14:41 PM Janine Reyes Judge: Lifesaving Law Will Be Put To Use

CORPUS CHRISTI -- Mary's law is supposed to help prevent domestic violence cases from escalating to the level of danger just experienced by Leticia Perales, police say her boyfriend Jacob Salazar shot her four times last night. She's now in intensive care.

But the law, initiated by local leaders, has never been put to use in Nueces county.

We attended the District Judges' meeting today to find out why.

"I try to enforce that stay away order and I'll use GPS if I need to," Judge David Stith told us after the meeting.

He says those stay away orders could make the difference between life and death. That's why he orders GPS monitors to track abusers, but here in Nueces county, those GPS monitors aren't being used the way Mary's law intended. The law requires attackers to be tracked by GPS, but, the difference is if an abuser gets too close to a victim, that victim and authorities are notified by text.

Are there certain cases where you think a potential victim could benefit from having that kind of notice," we asked Stith. "I think its important to do in all the cases and if its not being done, then I'll tell you we're at our judges' meeting and I'll make it an issue on the agenda for our next judges' meeting we'll make that happen," he replied.

If they do make that happen, victims advocates like Susan Holley Lowe, who helped create the law says it will not just save lives, it will also give victims and their families some peace. Just yesterday, she saw a family in need whose youngest children understand the dangers of domestic violence too well.

"One of the children as they entered the shelter and the door closed said, 'oh mommy we have freedom now,'" Lowe said.

Larry Vanderwoude showed those devices and the latest technology to the Council of District Judges today. He says his company has the equipment and technology in Corpus Christi right now. all it takes is an order from a judge.

"It runs anywhere from $7 to $9 a day," Vanderwoude said, "the offender pays for it."

For the victims, though, the freedom of living with less fear is priceless.

"They live with that heightened level of fear all the time, that having to look over your shoulder constantly," said Lowe.

Some experts caution that Mary's Law gives victims a false sense of security, because if an offender cuts off the device, victims could be caught off guard. Judge Stith says it's still worth the effort to get this program going here.

Domestic violence is a big problem in Corpus Christi. In fact, the Women's Shelter of South Texas has exceeded its capacity of 65 people. There are currently 74 women and children staying at the shelter. Leadership at the shelter tells us they often see a increase in demand for services during summer months.



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One Local Beach is Beautiful as Ever Thanks to Breakwaters Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 12:35:15 PM Rachel Cole - One Local Beach is Beautiful as Ever Thanks to Breakwaters

CORPUS CHRISTI - Some area beaches are in danger of eroding, while others like, "University Beach" near Texas A&M Corpus Christi are maintaining a "healthy" status. Partly because of how the beach was restored in 2001. Plus, scientists with the Conrad Blucher Institute conduct an annual beach profile survey as a check up.

Deidre Williams is a coastal research scientist, who says, beaches naturally erode over time, sending sand out into the gulf. However, one local beach has been flourishing for more than a decade.

"University Beach was designed so that it would capture the eroding sand, it holds the eroding sand within the beach cell," Williams said.

The cell is made up of two rock structures and several "breakwaters" that act as a barrier for beach sand.

"Then we can go out and actually reclaim that sand at a later date," she added.

A team of scientists take to the water to measure sand levels to see how much is being lost and where it's headed.

"The purpose of looking at both the dry beach and the submerged beach is to get a better understanding of where the sand is going to once it's eroded," Williams said.

The recycled sand is used to replenish the beach after natural erosion happens versus bringing in new sand. Which Williams says can be costly.

"We don't have to go to that additional expense that you might have to say at North Beach where you have to bring in new sand and nourish from an outside source," she said.

Over the last 13 years, researchers have noticed that this design has also created a coastal feature known as a tombolo.

"A tombolo is when the shoreline reaches out and touches and offshore structure which is the breakwater," Williams said.

Williams says that "sandbar" is the build up of sand that will be used to touch up the beach when the time comes.

The beach has been recommended to reclaim the sand. However, University Beach has far exceeded it's "healthy status" expectation. Initially, scientists planned on re-nourishment every 5 years. This month, though, marks 13 years since the beach was restored.


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Mom Accused of Throwing Fish Tank at Daughter Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 12:19:44 PM Mom Accused of Throwing Fish Tank at Daughter

CORPUS CHRISTI - A 10 year old girl went looking for help around 2:30 this morning after she says her mother threw a fish tank at her.

The child went to her apartment manager's office and said her mom, 37-year old Stephanie Johnston, had come home drunk started calling her names and then threw that fish tank at her.

Police say Johnston had left her daughter alone from 7:30 last night until 2 o'clock this morning. They also say she had been drinking at her job.

Johnston was arrested for child abandonment, child endangerment and public intoxication. By the way, the young girl cut her finger while picking up broken glass. Police did not say what happened to the pet lizard that was being kept in the aquarium.


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Boyfriend Accused of Shooting Woman Several Times Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 12:11:05 PM Boyfriend Accused of Shooting Woman Several Times

CORPUS CHRISTI - Police found a woman who'd been shot several times last night by a passenger in her car.

Family members have identified the victim as 43-year old Leticia Perales. CCPD says she was sitting in the driver's seat of a pickup at Mcardle and Carroll when she was shot by her boyfriend, 32-year old Jacob Salazar.

The boyfriend allegedly got away from the shooting scene by stealing a car from a nearby apartment. The car was rammed through the apartment complex gate. He was found at his mother's apartment and arrested for aggravated assault and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

The victim's family claims Salazar abused Perales and threatened to kill her and her children on multiple occasions.

"I pray all the time to God to take care of her. And I always tell her look, let him go. I don't want a phone call in the middle of the night...I'm always scared for my phone to ring," the victim's mother told us.

Perales was shot in the neck, side, back and leg. The family says a bullet is lodged near her spine. The removal will require a specialist to handle the risky surgery.

If you, or someone you know, is in an abusive relationship, there is a place that can help. The Women's Shelter of South Texas works to "prevent and ultimately end domestic violence and sexual assault in South Texas."  Contact a counselor at 361-881-8888 or visit

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Disbarred Attorney David Bonilla to Serve 10 Years in Prison Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 11:42:03 AM Disbarred Attorney David Bonilla to Serve 10 Years in Prison

CORPUS CHRISTI - Former attorney David Bonilla will serve 10 years in prison for violating his probation on charges for misuse of fiduciary property and theft.

Five years ago his clients came forward with accusations he had withheld their settlement cash.

Back in May 2011, Bonilla was placed on 10 years probation after he pleaded guilty to six counts of misuse of fiduciary property and one count of theft.

Prosecutors say he pocketed money that had been awarded to his clients. Bonilla was also ordered to pay half a million dollars in restitution.




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Passenger Shoots Driver, Jumps Out Of Vehicle Local News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 5:16:45 AM Miranda Leah - @MirandaLeahTV Passenger Shoots Driver, Jumps Out Of Vehicle

CORPUS CHRISTI - A man is facing charges after a late-night shooting that put a woman in the hospital.

Police said the man was riding in the passenger seat with a woman on Carroll Lane when he suddenly shot her multiple times, jumped out of the truck, and then took off on foot.

"We have witnesses who saw the vehicle driving erratically," said CCPD Lt. James Gray. "Then saw the vehicle stop, and heard shots."

The 34-year-old woman is currently in Memorial Hospital. Although she has multiple gun wounds, polices said her injuries are not life threatening.

After the shooting, police claim the man stole a car from a nearby apartment, rammed through the apartment complex gate, and sped off. He then abandoned that car and ran to his mother's apartment around the corner. Police found him there and arrested him.

The 34-year-old man is facing multiple charges, including aggravated assault and unauthorized use of a vehicle.


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Local Woman Diagnosed With ALS Overjoyed With Ice Bucket Challenge Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 3:30:21 PM Sara Donchey Local Woman Diagnosed With ALS Overjoyed With Ice Bucket Challenge

CORPUS CHRISTI - Kelly Rhodes knew something was wrong when she had 42 serious falls in a year and a half.

So in 2011, she went in to the doctor for a battery of tests. She was prodded and poked like a pincushion.

"I'm not getting a tattoo," Rhodes joked. "If i do, it'll say, 'Poke here.'"

Doctors initially diagnosed Rhodes with Stiff Person Syndrome, a rare neurologic disorder that makes the body feel rigid and stiff.

But after two years of treatment, Rhodes wasn't getting better.

That's when she traveled to the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston to get another opinion.

"The doctor had already gotten the results and he said, ''s ALS.'"

Rhodes was shocked.

ALS, often referred to as Lou Gehrig's Disease, is a disease that affects the nerves and brain and often leaves people unable to move or talk.

"I have arthritis and atrophy in my hands, and they're pretty shaky right now," Rhodes looked down to her hands as they trembled in her lap. "There are things you have to re-train yourself how to do. It's a big deal to go and tie a bow in a dress."

She can't drive, or work as a pre-school assistant teacher anymore. But Rhodes' struggles haven't gotten her down.

"There's hope. There is hope. We all have our good days and our yuck days..all of us do! And I'm no exception."

The recent explosion in popularity of the online "Ice Bucket Challenge" has been delightful for Rhodes.

As of Tuesday, it had already raised $22.9 million dollars for the ALS Association.

Rhodes calls fad "crazy awesome." In fact, she says she's up for the challenge herself.


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Jackknifed Truck Blocks Both Directions of Interstate Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 1:40:16 PM Jackknifed Truck Blocks Both Directions of Interstate

CORPUS CHRISTI - A flatbed truck drove over the center median of I-37 near Rand Morgan road, forcing police to close down most lanes of traffic.

The driver of the MG Building Materials truck appears to have lost control and gone into the opposite lanes of traffic. The truck was stuck on the center median.

He was taken to the hospital with a bump to the head. Several other drivers avoided the crash by swerving off the road.

As of 2:25pm, all southbound lanes of traffic have reopened.

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Police: 5 Guns Found in Intoxicated Man's Truck Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 12:48:43 PM Police: 5 Guns Found in Intoxicated Man's Truck

CORPUS CHRISTI - A man accused of being under the influence outside a convenience store is in a lot more trouble as an officer found several guns in his truck. His biggest problem? One of the guns was reported stolen.

It started when someone waved down a police officer on North Beach around midnight Monday to report seeing a guy who appeared drunk and ready to drive away.

Andrew Lonnon, age 26, was in the driver's seat of the parked truck. He was placed under arrest for public intoxication.

The officer noticed an AK-47 style rifle on the back seat of the truck, plus a shotgun and three pistols in the cab. As stated earlier, one of the pistols came back as being reported stolen.

Lonnon's charged with unlawfully carrying a weapon (Class A misdemeanor), theft of a firearm (state felony) and public intoxication (Class C misdemeanor).

Carrying a firearm out of plain sight in your vehicle is not illegal. Unless the owner is committing a crime classified higher than a Class C misdemeanor. The theft of a firearm charge qualifies.

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Witnesses Report Little Red Wagon Loaded with Loot Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 12:21:38 PM Witnesses Report Little Red Wagon Loaded with Loot

CORPUS CHRISTI - A man charged with burglarizing a home probably wishes he had a faster getaway vehicle.

This man, 21-year-old Sergio Franco, is accused of entering a home by removing its window air conditioner and stealing items.

Witnesses spotted him leaving the scene with the stolen loot in a little red wagon.

Police were able to track him down quickly to a home nearby where they also found the stolen property.

When officers were taking him to the police car, Franco tried to escape, so he's also charged with resisting arrest.


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Public Hearing on Annexation of Land Eyed by Wind Turbine Firm Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 10:40:30 AM Public Hearing on Annexation of Land Eyed by Wind Turbine Firm

CORPUS CHRISTI - There's a public hearing being held today to discuss the future of a proposed wind farm in the Chapman Ranch area.

Apex Clean Energy of Virginia wants to build 175 wind turbines in the area just south of Corpus Christi.

The city is against the idea saying it could hurt growth in that part of town. Today, the city council will hold its first public discussion on a plan to annex some of the land where apex wants to build the wind turbines.

If that land is annexed it could give the city the authority to control what's built on there.


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Husband Stabbed in Both Knees, Wife Drives Away in Terror Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 10:36:20 AM Ben Lloyd Husband Stabbed in Both Knees, Wife Drives Away in Terror

CORPUS CHRISTI - Late Monday night medics and police were called to help out a man with multiple stab wounds to both of his knees. He blamed his 25-year-old wife for the injuries.

Police went out looking for the woman her three kids who left the home in a truck. They were found not too far away on Sam Rankin.

The woman has cuts to a leg, bruises on her face and cuts on her left hand. It sounds like she defended herself and escaped a dangerous situation in the home.

As of this morning, CCPD believes the husband started attacking his wife inside the home. During the fight a table was broken and he allegedly used a leg of that table to hit the wife in the face.

She managed to grab a knife and stab him several times, according to police. Once he was down, she grabbed her kids - ages 11 months to 8 years old - and piled into the family truck. But police were told the husband came outside for more.

The truck had a broken driver's side window and the back window was busted out as well. The wife says he jumped into the back of the truck and smashed the window right behind the kids. She also says he jumped on the hood and demanded she get out of the truck.

But at that point his mother got involved and the wife was able to drive away. None of the children were injured.

CCPD has not identified the husband yet because charges of aggravated assault are still pending. First, he needs to recover from surgery for his slashed up knees.

The wife was taken to the hospital for treatment. Officers turned the children over to a family member.

If you, or someone you know, is in an abusive relationship, there is a place that can help. The Women's Shelter of South Texas works to "prevent and ultimately end domestic violence and sexual assault in South Texas."  

Contact a counselor at 361-881-8888 or visit

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6 Investigates: Officer Double-Dipping Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 10:05:55 AM Andrew Ellison - 6 Investigates: Officer Double-Dipping

ROBSTOWN - He was getting paid with taxpayer dollars when he wasn't at work. That's why a Robstown police officer was fired last month.

As our Andrew Ellison found out in a KRIS6 News investigation, the officer's actions could have put young children at risk.


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Early Morning Arson Fires On Kostoryz Local News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 5:35:49 AM Miranda Leah - @MirandaLeahTV Early Morning Arson Fires On Kostoryz

CORPUS CHRISTI - Two fires on Kostoryz appear to be caused by an arsonist, according to investigators.

The first fire happened at a home on Kostoryz and Mansheim around 2 a.m. this morning.

A neighbor ran to warn the family after he saw the flames climbing up the side of their home. At the same time, another fire was burning at trailer only a couple blocks away. Thankfully, no one was hurt in either incident, but officials said the two seem connected.

"It appears that the two were probably related," said CCFD Captain James Brown. "And intentionally set."

The fire department did stop both fires from spreading before they caused any significant damage.

Captain James Brown said these are just two of a handful of arson fires that have been started in this area within the past month. He warns that the best way to prevent things like this from happening is to report anything suspicious.

"Just keep an eye on your neighborhood," he said. "If you see anything strange or suspicious, call 911 and report it."

The fire department is asking anyone who knows anything about these fires to call Crimestoppers at 888-TIPS.


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