Judges Sue Texas Governor Over Limits on Inmate Releases During Outbreak

Sixteen Houston judges and three criminal defense attorneys’ associations sued top Texas officials Wednesday, claiming the governor’s executive order restricting judges’ ability to issue no-fee bonds is unconstitutional and will put inmates and jail staffers at greater risk of contracting the coronavirus.

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Kidnapping and Murder

An appeals court in Texas upheld the convictions of Craig Davison for his role in a “sordid tale of kidnapping and murder” of two men he blamed for burglarizing his house. While another man confessed to kidnapping and murdering the victims, and a woman pleaded guilty to assisting in the crimes, the court properly admitted evidence showing that Davison had abused both when they did not do what he wanted. 

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Texas Oil Groups Launch Effort to Reduce Methane Emissions

A coalition of Texas oil industry trade groups and companies on Tuesday announced a new voluntary effort to reduce climate change-causing methane emissions and oilfield flaring as the industry faces mounting pressure from critics and even some of its own biggest players to limit its environmental footprint.

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Ficheras

An appeals court in Texas upheld a ruling in favor of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission’s decision to cancel a bar’s alcoholic beverage permit based on the presence of “ficheras,” who are women that sit with male customers at bars, get them to buy a drink for an inflated price, and receive a ticket or cash from the bar for each drink they help sell.

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Federal Judge Blocks Texas Ban on Abortions During Outbreak

Texas pushed back Monday against Planned Parenthood’s challenge to an executive order banning unnecessary surgeries during the Covid-19 pandemic, saying surgical abortions are not medically necessary and nonsurgical abortions are also included in the ban as the state tries to conserve medical supplies.

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