Man accused of causing horrific car crash that killed retired Marine already suspected of attempted kidnapping

The man accused of causing a horrific multi-vehicle crash Wednesday in Houston — killing a retired Marine and a woman — was wearing an ankle monitor in connection with a 2017 case in which he allegedly tried to kidnap a woman at a cemetery. Charles Glaze, 54, is alleged to have caused the deadly seven-car crash on … Continue reading “Man accused of causing horrific car crash that killed retired Marine already suspected of attempted kidnapping”

The man accused of causing a horrific multi-vehicle crash Wednesday in Houston — killing a retired Marine and a woman — was wearing an ankle monitor in connection with a 2017 case in which he allegedly tried to kidnap a woman at a cemetery.

Charles Glaze, 54, is alleged to have caused the deadly seven-car crash on the Grand Parkway near Tomball after his truck went across the median and veered into oncoming traffic, FOX26 reported. He was hospitalized after the crash with non-life-threatening injuries.

Charles Glaze is accused of causing a deadly car crash in Houston, Texas, that left two people dead on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. (Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office)

Michael Brown, 78, a retired Marine who served in the Vietnam War, was killed in the crash. His wife, Charlotte, broke her collarbone and was recovering in the hospital, KHOU11 reported. The name of the other person killed in the crash was not released, but the TV station reported the victim was a mother of two.

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Neighbors remembered Brown as a positive influence in his community.

"Sometimes we don’t realize how blessed we are, when we have those people in our lives, until they’re suddenly taken away from us, and it’s those people that have made the difference in our lives while they’re here that are gonna be missed the most," Troy Butler, a neighbor, told FOX26. “And that was the case with Michael Brown. He positively impacted this whole community."

Glaze told investigators he has a history of seizures and did not recall what occurred before the pile-up. It was not immediately clear if he would face charges related to the deadly crash.

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At the time of the incident, investigators said he was found wearing an ankle monitor.

Glaze was accused in a June 2017 attack on a woman at the Klein Memorial Park Cemetery in Magnolia, Texas. The woman was at the cemetery to visit a loved one’s grave when Glaze allegedly used a stun gun on her, gagging her and pointing a gun at her head, the Houston Chronicle reported citing court documents. The woman was able to flee and Glaze was charged with “aggravated assault with a deadly weapon,” FOX26 reported.

Kathleen Joyce is a breaking/trending news producer for FoxNews.com. You can follow her at @Kathleen_Joyce8 on Twitter.

Border agents seize $1.7 million in meth, in second largest drug bust this week

Officials seized nearly $1.3 million worth of meth at the U.S.-Mexico Border in Texas on Thursday, marking the second time this week that agents thwarted a significant narcotics smuggling attempt.

Agents with Customs and Border Protection and the Office of Field Operations were alerted to a 2018 Chevrolet Silverado attempting to enter the U.S. through the Juarez-Lincoln International Bridge.

According to border officials, a canine search of the vehicle revealed that the 27-year-old female driver and her 28-year-old passenger were attempting to smuggle in 94 pounds of alleged methamphetamine, an estimated street value of $1,322,848.

“Our CBP officers’ hard work, perseverance, and utilization of canines and our non-intrusive imaging systems resulted in the interception of this significant load of methamphetamine,” Port Director Albert Flore of Laredo Port of Entry said in a statement.

Thursday’s bust comes just days after agents at the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge cargo facility seized a trailer with an estimated $7 million worth of narcotics.

“Our frontline CBP continues to maintain their vigilance and utilize their inspections skills and experience as pre-Christmas traffic starts to increase,” Flore also said.

The two women from Thursday’s incident were arrested and turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations unit.

Paulina Dedaj is a writer/ reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @PaulinaDedaj.

Serial killer pleads guilty in Texas woman’s 1994 death

DALLAS – A 78-year-old prisoner who says he killed about 90 people over nearly four decades as he moved around the country pleaded guilty to murder Thursday in the 1994 strangulation of a Texas woman.

Samuel Little entered his plea in the West Texas city of Odessa, where the body of Denise Christie Brothers was discovered in a vacant lot about a month after she disappeared. He received another life prison term, Ector County District Attorney Bobby Bland said in a statement.

"Due to the efforts of law enforcement agencies from around the country, dozens of victims' families now have answers," Bland said. "Although this is a conviction in Ector County, Texas, I hope it will serve as justice for all those atrocious murders committed across this nation in this unprecedented era of terror and mayhem caused by Samuel Little."

Little was convicted in 2014 of killing three Los Angeles-area women in separate attacks in the late 1980s and was serving life sentences when authorities say he confessed this year to killing dozens more people in 20 states since 1970.

Those confessions, which often included a level of detail and recall that authorities say was uncanny, spurred investigators from Florida to California to review old murder cases. An FBI spokesman said thus far, investigators have concluded that Little was the killer in 36 cases, including the killing of Brothers and the three in the Los Angeles-area that landed him in prison. But Bland said in his statement more than 40 cases have been confirmed. He later explained that he received that number from Texas Rangers, an elite investigative agency that has relayed details of Little's confessions to law officers in other states. Little explained the killings in a series of conversations with Ranger James Holland.

Most recently, police in Tennessee linked Little to the death of Martha Cunningham, a Knoxville woman whose body was found in a wooded area by a road in 1975. Even though Cunningham was bruised and nude from the waist down when her body was found, detectives attributed her death to natural causes, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.

With at least three-dozen confirmed deaths, Little is already among the most prolific known serial killers in American history. Gary Ridgway, the so-called Green River killer who is serving life in prison, pleaded guilty to killing 49 women and girls, making him the deadliest serial killer in terms of confirmed kills, though he has said he likely killed more than 71 people. Ted Bundy confessed to 30 homicides from about 1974 to 1978 and John Wayne Gacy killed at least 33 young men and boys in the 1970s. Both of them were executed.

Little, who is in poor health and relies on a wheelchair, offered his confessions as a bargaining chip to be moved from the Los Angeles County prison where he was being held, the FBI said last month. But Bland said Thursday that Little will return to California to serve his life term.

Little, who also went by the name Samuel McDowell, targeted vulnerable women who were often involved in prostitution and addicted to drugs, authorities have said. Once a competitive boxer, he usually stunned or knocked out his victims with powerful punches before he strangled them while masturbating.

"With no stab marks or bullet wounds, many of these deaths were not classified as homicides but attributed to drug overdoses, accidents, or natural causes," the FBI said.

Texas man who allegedly tried, failed to kidnap teen jogger is arrested

A Texas man was taken into custody on Tuesday for the attempted kidnapping of a 15-year-old girl who managed to escape the ordeal, authorities said.

Law enforcement learned that the teen had been out jogging on Dec. 2 when a person she described as a Hispanic male came near her, the Brazoria County Sheriff’s Office said on Facebook. The individual had been driving a tan, 4-door Chevrolet Silverado truck made in the early 2000s, authorities said.

The girl claimed that the male “stopped and got out of the truck and wrapped his arms around her,” prompting her to yell for help, authorities said. She managed to free herself after the pair crashed to the ground, after which he fled the scene in his vehicle, the sheriff’s office said.

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On Dec. 5 investigators from the sheriff’s office went to the scene of the incident and while they were there, they spotted a vehicle that matched the one that had been described as the suspect’s, authorities said. When the driver – identified as suspect Steven Salazar – noticed the investigators, he allegedly tried to leave the area before being stopped by a sheriff’s office patrol unit, according to the post.

“Salazar fit the description given of the attempted abductor, however, he denied having any contact with the victim or any involvement with the incident,” the sheriff’s office said.

He was then arrested for reckless driving, and would also face a charge of evading arrest in a vehicle, the post said.

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“Investigators were able to positively identify Steven Salazar as being the male that attempted to abduct the 15-year-old victim on Sunday, December 2,” the sheriff’s office said. “Investigators again interviewed Salazar and he gave several inconsistent stories about the incident.”

Salazar was at his home in Alvin, Texas on Dec. 11 when authorities arrived and took him into custody for attempted kidnapping, following which he was booked into the Brazoria County Jail on a $20,000 bond, the sheriff’s office said.

The Brazoria County Jail confirmed to Fox News that Salazar remained in custody on Thursday.

Authorities are continuing to investigate the incident, the post said.

Body cam video shows police officers catching boy who jumped from burning apartment

A trio of sure-handed police officers caught an 8-year-old boy who jumped from his burning Texas apartment early Monday morning, stunning body cam footage shows.

Officers Tyler Gross, Corey Jones and David Fields with the Balch Springs Police Department arrived at the apartment complex before firefighters made it to the scene. Body cam footage shows the trio alerting residents and neighbors to the fire roaring nearby — when they suddenly discover a mother and her son trapped in a second-floor unit.

“[We were] scared to death because you know what fire does and how fast it moves,” Fields told WFAA.

Keisha Sowels and her 8-year-old son, Kingston, were trapped inside the apartment, and the only way out was through a window — which she couldn't open, Sowels told FOX4.

The body camera footage shows officers telling Sowels to try to kick out the glass, and when that doesn't work, Jones is seen throwing a baton at the window to smash it.

He and the other officers then encourage Kingston to jump.

“He was just scared,” Jones told FOX4. “I think anybody would be with flames behind them and a jump before him. He knew that we were down there, and we’re going to catch him. He didn’t think twice and jumped out the window.”

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The three officers were able to catch Kingston and, soon after, the fire department arrived and got Sowels to safety using a ladder.

“We’re good, buddy,” Jones can be heard telling the young boy after the leap. “Hey, that was a good jump, man. That was a good jump.”

Police said no one in the apartment complex was seriously hurt in the fire; however, several apartments were damaged by the flames. The fire itself is considered “suspicious” and is under investigation, FOX4 reported.

“I just thank God that they took the time to do what they were called to do as officers and firefighters,” Sowels said. “I really appreciate it. I am totally grateful…Y’all are definitely angels in my eyes, and I really appreciate it and I am grateful for the rest of my life.”

Jones told WFFA he believes any cop would have acted the same way as he and his fellow officers.

“Not wait for fire, not wait for anyone else,” he said. “We’re going to do what we can to help anyone that we can.”

Lucia I. Suarez Sang is a Reporter for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @luciasuarezsang

Large spool in Texas barrels down interstate once again

Texas drivers traveling down Interstate 610 on Friday had to share the road with an unlikely item – a large spool.

The sizeable object had been on board a truck before it spilled on to the road, officials told Fox 13 News. No one was hurt after it fell off, the outlet said.

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The scene as the spool rolled down the freeway was caught on video and nearby vehicles could be seen navigating around it. One individual is heard on the recording urging someone to call 911.

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“Holy cow, what is that thing?” a person said.

This isn’t the first time drivers in the state have had to contend with such an unusual item. In October, a giant industrial spool was also spotted barreling down Interstate 10.

Fox News’ Nicole Darrah contributed to this report.

Massive haul of meth, cocaine, heroin seized at US-Mexico bridge

A drug bust at the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas earlier this week exposed nearly $7 million worth of narcotics at a cargo facility.

Border agents at the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge cargo facility were alerted to a commercial shipment of stone blocks on Monday. Officers with drug-sniffing dogs discovered packages of narcotics hidden within the shipment.

The bridge crosses the Rio Grande, connecting Texas with Mexico.

Officials said they seized 35 packages believed to be methamphetamine weighing 320 pounds, seven packages believed to be cocaine weighing almost 40 pounds and two packages believed to be heroin weighing around seven pounds.

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The total street value is estimated at $6,998,000, border officials said.

The drugs and the trailer they were in were turned over to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the case is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations agents.

Paulina Dedaj is a writer/ reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @PaulinaDedaj.

Julian Castro suggests new guard of Dems has 2020 edge, as he takes big step toward bid

Julian Castro isn’t writing off some of the older potential Democratic presidential contenders, like former Vice President Joe Biden and Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

But the 44-year old former San Antonio, Texas, mayor and Housing and Urban Development secretary under President Obama clearly likes to highlight that Americans are hungering for “a new generation of leadership.”

Castro on Wednesday took a major step toward running for the White House by announcing – through a video on his website – the launch of a presidential exploratory committee.

Julian Castro at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics last February. (Fox News)

Asked about potential candidates in their 70s or late 60s, such as Biden, Sanders and Warren, Castro said they “bring a lot to the table” and are “very talented, very accomplished, very important voices in the party. I hope they run.”

“I would never say somebody shouldn’t be in a position just because they’ve been around for 'x' number of years,” Castro explained in an interview with Fox News and a couple of local New Hampshire news outlets.

But, he emphasized: “I think you always need a mix of folks who have a lot of experience and then also folks who are bringing a fresh perspective. And I’m going to try and bring a fresh perspective.”

Castro grabbed headlines with his announcement – which he said would be followed by an official decision on Jan. 12.

Julian Castro during a visit to Nashua, N.H. (Fox News)

But the news came as fellow Texas Democrat Beto O’Rourke’s been enjoying plenty of buzz and lots of national media attention in recent weeks. The outgoing congressman who came close to defeating Republican Sen. Ted Cruz in last month’s midterm elections has excited activists and donors across the country as he mulls his own presidential bid.

“I’ve always assumed that this is going to be a crowded field,” Castro acknowledged.

“I think you have a lot of talented people who are thinking about it, including Beto,” he added diplomatically.

O’Rourke returned the compliment, telling Fox News: “Secretary Castro is an amazing person, did an amazing job as mayor of San Antonio as secretary of HUD in the Obama administration, I think he’s going to be a great candidate.”

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O’Rourke added that Castro’s move “doesn’t change anything that I’m doing because we just haven’t made a decision about anything.”

He explained he’s been focused on finishing his remaining weeks in Congress during the lame-duck session before spending “time with family and hopefully it becomes obvious to us what’s in the best interest of our family and country and pursue it.”

In his interview, Castro clearly took aim at President Donald Trump even without naming him, highlighting that Americans are “ready for leadership in Washington that is trying to unite us instead of divide us, that insists on opportunity for everybody instead of just opportunity for some people, that has integrity and character instead of what we’ve seen recently.”

Castro’s announcement – which allows him to raise money legally for a presidential bid – did not come as a surprise.

He’s been signaling that a White House run has been in the cards, telling reporters in recent weeks he was likely to launch a campaign. His trips this year to the early voting states in the presidential primary and caucus calendar – including three stops in New Hampshire – also were a calling card regarding his 2020 intentions.

Castro’s move puts him ahead of most potential rivals for the nomination. Only outgoing three-term Rep. John Delaney of Maryland – who announced his run for president in July of last year – has tossed his hat officially into the ring.

Many others are expected to follow soon.

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Looking ahead to the possibility of a field of up to 20 candidates or more, Castro said: “That’s going to be fantastic for Democrats because you’re going to get to hear from any number of people with different perspectives and everybody’s going to have their voice heard and I think that’s going to be cathartic in fact for the party, after some of the bitterness of 2016.”

But, he said his move wasn’t an attempt to beat other White House hopefuls to the punch.

“For me, I’m going on my own timeline,” he explained. “I’m going to get out there and talk to folks in New Hampshire and across the country regardless of what other people are doing.”

Before heading out on the campaign trail, Castro and his twin brother, Rep. Joaquín Castro of Texas, will be in New York on Thursday evening, for some national exposure. Both Castors are scheduled to sit down with Stephen Colbert on "The Late Show" on CBS.

Fox News’ Peter Doocy contributed to this report.

Paul Steinhauser is a politics reporter based in New Hampshire.

Former Baylor frat president accused of rape avoids prison in plea deal

HOUSTON – In a case with echoes of the furor involving a Stanford University swimmer two years ago, advocates for sex-crime victims say the plea bargain that enabled a former Baylor University fraternity president to stay out of jail is another failure by the legal system.

"What's similar is that violence against women is not taken seriously by the legal system," said Michele Dauber, a Stanford law professor who led the successful campaign to recall the judge in the swimmer's case. "The handling of sexual assault in the criminal justice system has been inappropriate, and sort of shockingly so, for a really long time."

In the Texas case, Jacob Walter Anderson, 23, had been charged with sexually assaulting a 19-year-old fellow Baylor student outside a 2016 fraternity party. The woman told police she was given punch and became disoriented. She said Anderson led her behind a tent and raped her while choking her.

Prosecutors offered him a deal in which he pleaded no contest in October to unlawful restraint. State District Judge Ralph Strother sentenced him under the terms of the deal Monday to probation, counseling and a $400 fine. He will not have to register as a sex offender.

The woman's lawyer, Vic Feazell, said she and her family found out about the plea bargain from reading the newspaper.

"He stole my body, virginity and power over my body," the woman said in a statement she read in court Monday. She said the outcome shows that the justice system in McLennan County, where Baylor is located, is "severely broken."

Toni Van Pelt, president of the National Organization for Women, said Anderson should have been sent to jail and required to register as a sex offender.

"File that under men protecting men instead of victims and women," she said.

The judge, Anderson's lawyers and prosecutors did not return calls for comment. But District Attorney Abel Reyna defended the plea bargain back in October, saying prosecutors "achieved the best result possible with the evidence at hand." He said the evidence did not support the allegation that the victim may have been drugged.

Many were particularly outraged by the judge's grant of probation to at least two other men accused of sexually assaulting Baylor students, as well as an email one of the prosecutors sent the woman's lawyer in which she suggested jurors would take Anderson's side because there was just one alleged victim.

"It's my opinion that our jurors aren't ready to blame rapists and not victims when there isn't concrete proof of more than one victim," prosecutor Hilary LaBorde wrote in her email, which was obtained by the Waco Tribune-Herald.

LaBorde has been recognized by Texas prosecutors for her expertise in sex-crime cases. As Baylor was embroiled in a scandal a few years ago that led to the football coach's firing and the president's removal, she won convictions against two football players for sexual assault.

Stanford's Dauber said the judge should have rejected the plea agreement. The defendant could have gotten up to 20 years in prison if convicted of sexual assault.

Instead, Dauber said, "the crimes are systematically minimized, the harm is minimized. The message is somehow sent that this is not that serious."

Anderson was expelled from Baylor after a university investigation.

In the Stanford case, college athlete Brock Turner was convicted of sexual assault, and California Judge Aaron Persky sentenced him to six months in jail, which was widely criticized as too lenient. Voters eventually removed the judge from the bench after a campaign that raised more than $2 million in contributions nationwide.

Texas does not have recall elections for judges, but Strother's term expires in 2020. Dauber said it was too soon to decide whether her political action committee will try to unseat him. Van Pelt said she expects NOW's state affiliate to work against him.

"If we don't get him removed, when the next one comes along, we'll work on the next one," she said. "We're not going to stop until this culture changes."

Houston shooting suspect dead after 5-hour standoff with police, 3 officers injured, officials say

A man accused of shooting three Texas officers has died from an apparent “self-inflicted gunshot wound” after a standoff that lasted over five hours, law-enforcement officials announced Tuesday.

Five agents with the Fugitive Apprehension Unit — part of the state attorney general's office — and two investigators with the sheriff’s office were attempting to serve a felony warrant to 25-year-old Daniel Trevino at approximately 12:50 p.m. local time, Chief Deputy Edison Toquica with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said.

While at the door of the home, Trevino fired at officers who then returned fire, Toquica said during a news briefing earlier.

One deputy and two AG's officers were injured during the shootout.

Trevino barricaded himself inside the home for over five hours, police said.

During that time law enforcement was able to establish multiple lines of communication with Trevino.

Toquica said the suspect agreed to come out but instead fired at officers three more times.

He said at approximately 6:15 p.m., police discovered that Trevino died from a “self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.”

“We work hard every day to be sure that these type of situations end in a peaceful manner,” Toquica said at a later news conference. “Today was an exception to that.”

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He extended his “thoughts and prayers” to the injured officers who are expected to survive, adding that they are facing a “long recovery.”

One officer with the AG’s office was shot in the torso and leg while the other was shot in the foot, The Houston Chronicle reported. The deputy was struck in the hand and likely will lose a finger as a result of his injury, the news report said.

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The attorney general’s office released a statement confirming the injuries but declined to give further information.

Paulina Dedaj is a writer/ reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @PaulinaDedaj.