After the near-total collapse of the state’s electric grid, many jails and prisons lacked heat and running water.
For more than a week, 60-year-old Willis Darby was pretty sure he had COVID-19: He was congested and suffering from headaches at the Bastrop County Jail where he is incarcerated. Then, Winter Storm Uri hit. The heater broke, he said, … Read More
The administrator responsible for moving hearings online during the COVID-19 pandemic talks about the future of Zoom court.
In a West Texas district court Zoom hearing on Tuesday, an unexpected face joined the meeting: a cat. Or, more accurately, 69-year-old Presidio County Attorney Rod Ponton, trapped in a virtual filter. His face replaced with the countenance of a … Read More
Despite trapping people in a cycle of debt, predatory lenders in the Lone Star State raked in millions meant to help people get their financial footing.
Last spring, Federal Cash Advance of Oklahoma, LLC raked in nearly $1 million in a single transaction. That money came from the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which grants forgivable loans to small businesses to alleviate the financial turmoil wrought … Read More
After years of failed attempts, Texas lawmakers are again trying to curb petty arrests that disproportionately target people of color.
Update: On Monday, Marco Puente agreed to a $200,000 settlement in his lawsuit against two police officers with the City of Keller. On a broiling August day last year, Dillon Puente drove through the Fort Worth suburb of Keller to … Read More
Groping. Catcalling. Crude texts. We spoke to women in the oil industry who say they faced sexual harassment and were punished for speaking out.
With stunning precision, Sara Saidman, an oil field engineer, can still recall the moment that “set the tone for the rest of my employment at Schlumberger,” a Texas-based oil field services company. Saidman took a job at Schlumberger in 2016 … Read More
Democrats have long taken Latino voters for granted, while Republicans have worked to fill that organizing void.
Danny Diaz wasn’t shocked when he heard about the Republican surge along the Texas-Mexico border that confounded so many national pundits last week. The majority Latino region has long been a Democratic stronghold, communities there have been ravaged by COVID-19, … Read More
Every Texas jail death is supposed to be investigated. But a recent case shows how facilities skirt the law and avoid scrutiny.
Early last year, Holly Barlow-Austin cut off her ankle monitor and headed to Dallas. She lived with her husband in Texarkana, a small town on the border of Texas and Arkansas. But despite the restrictions of her probation, she decided … Read More