Ryan Romo underwent a four-hour polygraph test, during which no “red flags” were raised, a family attorney told reporters Tuesday afternoon. Romo, 19, was arrested in late October for allegedly raping a 16-year-old classmate in the backseat of his Chevy Tahoe following a concert at the Palladium Ballroom. A grand jury declined to indict RomoÂ on sexual assault charges yesterday.
Since the arrest, Romo has been finishing his senior year of Highland Park High School from his house, rarely going outside, said civil attorney Mark Senter. Baseball scholarship offers for Romo dried up following the arrest, Senter said, as did any prospect of Â professional baseball career.
“This is akin to the kids who were seniors in New Orleans when Katrina came through…it’s a horrible setback,” he said.
During the polygraph Romo was asked about his intent, what was said in the backseat of the Tahoe, and what was done. He passed “with flying colors,” Senter said.
When asked whether the alleged victim was lying, Senter responded, “I believe her version of what transpired in the back seat is not accurate.” He would not comment on a possible civil lawsuit by the Romo family, saying only “we have not considered any civil litigation at this point.”
When I suggested on Twitter today that people watch The Revisionaries tonight on KERA at 10, a friend of mine asked why I wanted him to break his TV. Yes, the documentary about the wacky Texas School Board of Education will drive you insane because it’s hard to believe that people who think dinosaurs were on Noah’s Ark actually get to decide what schoolkids learn. I’ll suggest to you what I suggested to him: have your crew lash you to the mainmast like Odysseus did so that when the Sirens tempt you to break your TV, you won’t be able. And lest you think I have strayed from the mission of this blog by bringing up a statewide issue that doesn’t strictly pertain to Dallas, I will point out that the documentary was edited by noted St. Mark’s alum Jawad Metni, who was also on Noah’s Ark.
A Dallas judge has modified Kimberly McCarthy’s execution for 60 days.She will not be executed today. #fb
— Rebecca Lopez (@rlopezwfaa) January 29, 2013
As of yesterday, Kimberly McCarthy – the woman scheduled to be executed for the 1997 robbery and murder of her Lancaster neighbor – was barreling ahead. That’s no longer the case, according to WFAA and the Associated Press. State District Judge Larry Mitchell moved the execution of the 51-year-old McCarthy to April 3.
On Monday, McCarthy’s attorneys at the Capital Punishment Clinic sent the following letter to Governor Perry:
Ty Pickens, grandson of T. Boone Pickens and a junior strategic communication major at TCU, has died, multiple media sources have reported.Â The circumstances of Pickens’ death were not immediately available.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of this member of our community and our hearts and thoughts are with Ty’s family at this time,” Cavins Tull, TCU vice chancellor for student affairs, told TCU’s student newspaper. “Staff members are available if students need to speak with someone about this sad news.”
UPDATE: From NBC-DFW
Sources: Drug overdose eyed in death of T. Boone Pickens’ grandson, 21-year-old Thomas Boone “Ty” Pickens IV. Latest on NBC 5 at 5. @nbcdfw
— ScottGordonNBC5 (@ScottGordonNBC5) January 29, 2013
Private equity firms C. Dean Metropoulos & Co., owner of Pabst Blue Ribbon, and Apollo Global Management are nearing a $400 million deal for Irving-based Hostess Brand’s Twinkies and other cakes,Â the Wall Street JournalÂ reports. The deal could be announced later today, and would serve as an indicator of prices in Hostess’ bankruptcy court asset auction. From the WSJ:
Apollo, the giant buyout shop co-founded by Leon Black, and Metropoulos, owner of the Pabst Blue Ribbon beer brand, have been looking to partner on a deal for some time. They emerged as the front-runners to snap up Hostess’s cake brands and negotiations between them and the company picked up steam in recent days, leading to the expected deal, people familiar with discussions said.
At least one publication is applauding the possible Twinkie/Pabst mash-up. From Esquire’s “Eat Like a Man” blog:
…basically, this could be the deal of the century: A cheap, easy-drinking, red-white-and-blue beer brand and a buying firm of the type which only exist in capitalist countries are about to buy the only thing more American than a cheeseburger and fries. They’re made for each other. Now we just have to start handing our 8-year-olds PBRs when we buy them Twinkies. Because we get it – those Twinkies you buy areÂ totallyÂ just for the kids.
Gotta say I tend to agree.
If you missed Governor Rick Perry’s State of the State address this morning, the word cloud above should at least buoy any conversation you may have about it in the next week. Throw out “student” and “taxes” and you should be fine. The full text of the (prepared) speech is here.
Most popular words: Texas (45 times), Texan (19), work (26), student (19), job (16), tax (12). He also threw in eight “togethers,” which is promising. He did not mention abortion or immigration. State Democrats — through the One Texas PAC – responded with a video:
This morning I touched on the WFAA story by Brett Shipp about how much money the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System spends on staff travel. Shipp’s story is titled “Globetrotting Pension Fund Execs Raise Eyebrows.” It drove me nervous because it found that a $3.6 billion operation with investments all over the world spent a whopping $185,000 on travel last year. Yes, technically that means the execs are globetrotters. But come on. Is that travel expense really out of line? Shipp’s story provided no context. Just outrage.
So I was looking forward to reading the version of the story (paywall) published on the front page of the the Dallas Morning News. It runs to 1,500 words, and it took two people to write it (Steve Thompson and Gary Jacobson). And, thankfully, the newspaper story does offer some context. The reporters found that the Dallas Employees’ Retirement Fund, which handles money for civil workers, spent $136,000 on travel in 2011. That year, the DERF had $2.75 billion in assets under management. That means its travel expenses amounted to .0049 percent of its assets. The money spent on travel by the Police and Fire Fund, by comparison, amounts to .0051 percent of its assets. In other words, it’s practically the same ratio. The context provided by the DMN suggests that the Police and Fire Fund spends about what it should on travel — especially when you consider what sorts of investments they make (heavier on the real estate, lighter on the stocks and bonds).
There’s a story here to be told. It’s about how the Police and Fire Fund invests the retirement money of 9,000 cops and firefighters. How much risk has the fund exposed itself to? Is the fund generating returns high enough to justify that risk? The newspaper story does touch on the management fees that the Police and Fire Fund pays. Two sentences. That’s it. The rest of the story, though, appears to be a waste of ink and paper. The TV report was a joke.
When a watchdog barks at every passing car, you learn to ignore it.
If you were thinking about picking up a copy of Jim Schutze’s The Accommodation: The Politics of Race in an American City for your lover for Valentine’s Day, then I hope you’ve been saving your pennies. A new hardback copy will run you $506.62.
I’m not going to claim Brek Shea is gone entirely, because until he slides onto the pitch somewhere in England I just won’t believe it. But FC Dallas released this statement last night:
We have received interest from a number of European clubs regarding Brek Shea. Brek is traveling there this evening and as a result, he will not be in attendance at training tomorrow. Currently, there is no deal in place with any club and we have no further details at this time.
Stoke City made an initial $3 million offer for Shea, which FC Dallas countered with a price of more than $4 million. Stoke was initially hesitant to make a deal without seeing Shea train, but that stipulation fell by the wayside as negotiations went on for more than a week. Ultimately, Stoke City was given assurances of Shea’s health (sources tell SBI that Shea is close to being able to play) and now just a physical stands in the way of Shea completing a move that will likely be in the $3.5 million and $4 million range.
It’s a huge turnaround for a transfer that looked dead last week. After negotiations between Stoke and Major League Soccer fell apart, Potters’ manager Tony Pulis said a deal was unlikely to be worked out until summer. Fans were left wondering where things fell apart and why the two sides couldn’t find a middle ground.
Now that all looks like posturing. According to reports, the final price is in the $3.5-$4 million range, and while offseason foot surgery initially had Stoke wanting Shea to complete a trial before a deal was finalized, now the Potters are willing to buy without the test drive.
Again, I won’t believe this until I see him in one of those barbershop quartet kits.
Hey, DallasÂ is back. And so is the inimitable Terry Linwood, Jeopardy champ and Southfork Ranch enthusiast. Terry writes, “Now that Larry Hagman was successful in his takeover bid of Heaven (R.I.P., cowboy) how can this show possibly go on without the character who has arguably become not only the definition of Dallas–cityÂ andÂ show–but probably of television villainy itself for billions across the world?” I don’t know, but you should read the rest of his recap here.
Meanwhile, if you’re already ready for lunch, the Omni Hotel hosts Soup’s On, the Stewpot Alliance’s annual lunchtime fundraiser. Led by The Grape’s chef-owner Brian Luscher, the event benefits the Stewpot’s regular clientele: homeless and at-risk individuals, in need of care and a good meal. Luscher’s famous (and some might say magic) mushroom soup will be joined by offerings by Randall Copeland of Restaurant Ava, Bruno Davaillon of The Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek, and Jason Maddy of Oak. There’s also an art sale prior to the main event for anyone looking to add to his or her collection. You can still snag the $150 individual ticket online.
This evening, Lady Gaga brings us her Born This Way Ball. I can’t tell if she’s been more off the rails than usual lately, or if it’s still just Gaga being gaga. But I do know that some local fans are already camped out, vying for the best general admission “monster pit” seats. You can’t have those, anyway, since they’re sold out. But there are upper level tickets still available.Â Madeon and Lady Starlight support. In addition, her Born Brave bus will be parked outside the AAC from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. It’s a pre-concert thing, but it really serves more like a rolling community center for young people under 25 who could use some help, or just like-minded people to talk to. Pretty cool.
For more to do tonight, go here.
I thank Donnie and Dallas for the consideration and while I think the D-League is a great opportunity, it is not the route for me.
— Allen Iverson (@alleniverson) January 29, 2013
I realize my actions contributed to my early departure from the NBA, should God provide me another opportunity I will give it my all
— Allen Iverson (@alleniverson) January 29, 2013
Mosley, Crain, and I had some very interesting fan fiction plans for Iverson's life in Frisco, so this is obviously disheartening.
Governor Rick Perry is expected today to call for amending the Texas Constitution to allow the state to return tax money it collects but doesn’t spend back to its citizens, the Associated Press reports.
The move – which Perry isÂ scheduledÂ to announce during his State of the State address at 11 a.m. – will support that idea that he “never bought into the notion that if you collect more, you need to spend more.”
“Today, I’m calling for a mechanism to be put in place so when we do bring in more than we need, we’ll have the option of returning tax money directly to the people who paid it,” the governor plans to say. “Currently, that’s not something our constitution allows. We need to fix that.”
Proposing a constitutional amendment requires two-thirds support of both the House and Senate, and it then must be approved by a majority of Texas voters. The Texas Tribune will live-stream the speech, starting at 11 a.m.
A Highland Park High School student accused of raping a fellow student following a concert in October will not be charged with the assault, after a Dallas County grand jury refused to indict the 19-year-old Monday.
A 16-year-old girl had told police that Ryan Romo, who no longer attends the school, had raped her in his Chevy Tahoe following a show at the Palladium Ballroom on Oct. 27.Â A rape exam indicated the girl had suffered a tear and abrasions, but Romo’s attorney, Reed Prospere, told the Morning NewsÂ that the grand jury heardÂ evidence from a polygraph in which Romo said the two had consensual sex.
The girl’s stepfather told the paper that the family “was extremely disheartened and dismayed”; additional charges will only come if more evidence is presented.
Bruiser is a black Labrador retriever, a breed I’ve heard of many times before. Cayden is a Vizsla, a breed I’d never heard of before this contest. According to my thorough research, Vizsla originated in Hungary. I studied abroad in Budapest and have great affection for the place after my time there, so I’m afraid I’m slightly biased towards Cayden as a result.
But go make up your own mind about this and the other three contests in our Adorable 8. Then vote here.
A report by the Miami New TimesÂ today indicates that Texas Rangers slugger Nelson Cruz may have received steroids or human growthÂ hormones from a Â Miami clinic that also catered toÂ San Francisco Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera, Oakland A’s pitcher Bartolo ColÃ³n, Cuban boxer Yuriorkis Gamboa, and even Alex Rodriguez.
The clinic in question isÂ Biogenesis, an “anti-aging” clinic that abruptly closed shop last month. A former employee gave the company’s customer spreadsheets to the New Times. As for Cruz’s alleged participation:
But there are also several prominent professionals in Bosch’s records who have never before been linked to steroid use. According to his July 2012 client sheet, Bosch sold $4,000 of product to Nelson Cruz, whom he nicknames “Mohamad.” Cruz, the power-hitting Dominican outfielder for the Texas Rangers, has whacked 130 bombs in his eight-year career without any links to performance-enhancing drugs. Until now. Bosch writes in his 2012 book: “Need to call him, go Thur to Texas, take meds from April 5-May 5, will owe him troches and… and will infuse them in May.”
The Rangers, according to DMN reporter Evan Grant, said only that the team was contacted by theÂ Miami New Times and that it then contacted MLB. The team had no further comment.