Vanessa Guillen’s family seeks $35 million in the Army specialist’s 2020 wrongful death at Fort Hood
Armed with a new federal court ruling that allows a former Army colonel to pursue a sexual assault lawsuit, the family of Vanessa Guillén has filed a wrongful death and assault case against the federal government.
Texas state police can keep Uvalde records secret for now, judge rules
The ruling sidestepped the question of whether the state police can withhold records concerning their response to the May 24 massacre at Robb Elementary School. The judge concluded that state Sen. Roland Gutierrez had not properly filed his request under Texas’ public records law.
Texas cities say streaming giants Disney, Hulu and Netflix owe them millions of dollars in unpaid fees
As people have cut cable subscriptions in favor of streaming services over the years, Texas cities say they have lost out on revenue from franchise fees they claim are owed by streaming giants like Disney, Hulu and Netflix.
Parents of Sandy Hook shooting victim call for accountability in Alex Jones’ defamation trial
The parents of 6-year-old Jesse Lewis are suing Jones for falsely claiming that the 2012 mass school shooting was a hoax meant to take away Americans’ guns. The trial is the first of three to determine monetary penalties against the Texas-based conspiracy theorist for his lies about the tragedy.
Alex Jones’ company files for bankruptcy midway through Sandy Hook damages trial
Free Speech Systems submitted the filing during a two-week trial to determine how much the Texas-based conspiracy theorist will award the parents of a victim in the 2012 school shooting, prompting speculation about the company’s effort to avoid bankruptcy oversight as a small business.
Texas suing USDA over requirement to add LGBTQ protections to nutrition programs’ nondiscrimination policies
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service announced in May that it would expand its definition of sexual discrimination to include gender identity and sexual orientation. Paxton and other attorneys general are suing in response.
Texas sues after Biden administration issues guidance saying doctors can perform abortions in emergencies
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton argues the Biden administration is violating the state’s “sovereign interest” by reassuring the nation’s doctors they can perform abortions in medical emergencies.
Linda Coffee argued Roe v. Wade. Now, she’s watching its demise.
Coffee was just 30 when the U.S. Supreme Court agreed with her argument that the constitutional right to privacy extended to abortion: “I thought, OK, well this is done now. I was thinking the [abortion] question was settled for as long as the country lasted.”
Volkswagen argues that Greg Abbott’s choice of judges in lawsuit could tilt emissions case in Texas’ favor
Because the state is a party in Attorney General Ken Paxton’s cases against the companies, Volkswagen lawyers have argued that allowing the Texas governor to appoint justices to a case for which the state stands to win a substantial amount of money would give “the impression that the State has had undue influence.”
U.S. Supreme Court ruling limits EPA’s authority in regulating greenhouse gases
The high court said a cap on power plants’ carbon dioxide emissions that forces a transition to other fuels may be a “sensible” solution to the climate crisis, but that Congress did not give the Environmental Protection Agency the broad authority to make such requirements. Texas was one of 17 states that joined in the suit.
Supreme Court rules Biden administration can end “remain in Mexico” policy, sending case back to a Texas court
The Trump administration created the Migrant Protection Protocols, also called “remain in Mexico,” in 2019 before the Biden administration canceled it in 2021. The ruling sends the case back to a Texas federal court.
Abortions up to six weeks of pregnancy can temporarily resume in Texas, judge rules
A ban in effect before Roe v. Wade cannot be used, as threatened last week by Attorney General Ken Paxton, according to a judge’s ruling Tuesday. However, the stopgap measure will, at most, extend abortion access in the state for two months.
Wendy Davis and Donna Howard, defenders of abortion access, worry the worst is yet to come after Roe decision
In interviews, the two women expressed a sense of sorrow over the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to allow states to ban abortions, adding even more enormous obstacles to what was already an uphill battle to protect reproductive rights in Texas.
In Roe decision, Justice Clarence Thomas invites new legal challenges to contraception and same-sex marriage rights
Experts told The Texas Tribune that Thomas’ opinion signals an openness from the court to reconsidering other settled legal precedents related to rights the court has ruled are protected by the constitution.
A Texas abortion clinic survived decades of restrictions. The Supreme Court may finally put it out of business.
Abortion clinics, and the patients they serve, have always had to adapt to changing laws and tightening restrictions. But the Supreme Court seems poised to deliver the fatal blow they’ve been dodging for decades.
Judge temporarily blocks some Texas investigations into gender-affirming care for trans kids
The state has been investigating whether parents who provide access to gender-affirming health care are committing child abuse. The temporary restraining order is part of a lawsuit filed on behalf of three families and members of PFLAG, an LGBTQ advocacy group.
Judge plans to levy “substantial fines” after Texas failed to comply with court-ordered fixes to its foster care system
The judge in the 11-year federal lawsuit against Texas said the state has not properly punished or shut down unsafe child care placement facilities or curbed the rate of children who are sexually victimized while in the state’s care.
Texas AG Ken Paxton to investigate whether Twitter is understating the number of fake accounts on the platform
Twitter has said bots and fake users represent less than 5% of its accounts, but Paxton says the percentage may be higher. The inquiry comes as Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who is in negotiations to buy Twitter, is also raising questions about the number of fake accounts on the platform.
Austin police officers who were indicted over actions during George Floyd protests sue the city
Several demonstrators who participated in the protests in response to George Floyd’s murder were seriously injured when they were struck by police with “less than lethal” beanbag rounds. The officers’ suit says they did not receive training on how to use this type of ammunition.
Cash is piling up in Kinney County from bonds posted to free migrants arrested under Texas border crackdown
Friends, families and attorneys have posted more than $2 million to get migrants out of prison. Defense attorneys say the rural county is erecting barriers that will keep many from recovering the money when they’re entitled to it.
Texas law prohibiting social media companies from banning users over their viewpoints reinstated by appeals court
The court did not evaluate the law on its constitutionality but will allow it to go back into effect while a legal case plays out. Texas lawmakers passed the law, saying social media platforms have an anti-conservative bias.
Crystal Mason’s contentious illegal voting conviction must be reconsidered, criminal appeals court says
Mason said she didn’t know she was ineligible to vote when she cast a provisional ballot in 2016, but she was sentenced to five years in prison. Now, the Court of Criminal Appeals says an appellate court that affirmed her conviction must look again at the evidence of Mason’s intent.
A minor trespassing case gives Gov. Greg Abbott’s border initiative its first courtroom win
The trial included four prosecutors, and so many potential jurors were summoned the town sandwich shop was shorthanded for lunch. But a Kinney County jury Monday convicted a Honduran national in the first jury trial for trespassing under Gov. Greg Abbott’s Operation Lone Star.
Judges, attorneys seek ways to alleviate court system back-up
HOUSTON The Texas Supreme Court recently ordered no jury trials or jury selections are to take place before Aug. 1, unless a plan is submitted and approved by the Office of Court Administration. Both prosecutors and defense attorneys agree the system cant handle much more of a back-up and they have got to find a way to get things moving. Thiessen said only 10 people are allowed in a courtroom at a time and that includes court staff. Thiessen and Musick both were quick to say the idea of trial participants wearing masks wont work. The back-up in the courts is also leading to an increase in the population at the Harris County jail.