Killeen Roads

Workers complete temporary fixes on Elms Road in Killeen.

4 shot in Heights

Four people were shot in Harker Heights on March 28, all with non-life threatening injuries.

The first incident happened at approximately 2:19 a.m. at the 700 block of South Amy Lane. After officers arrived on scene, it was discovered three vehicles were damaged by gun fire and shell casings were found, said Harker Heights Police Department, which is investigating the incident. At approximately 2:37 a.m., officers were dispatched to Seton Medical Center related to a gunshot victim.

In a separate incident at approximately 4:13 a.m., officers were dispatched to the 200 block of West Veterans Memorial Boulevard for reports of shots fired at Club Krush. Upon arriving at the club, officers discovered two victims of apparent gunshot wounds. Victims told police that they were shot inside of the establishment.

While at the scene, officers were dispatched to Seton Medical Center related to another gunshot victim. Upon arrival at the hospital, officers discovered that the victim was shot inside Club Krush.

Police have not released anymore information.

KISD special education department has ‘grown’, director says

The Killeen Independent School District’s head of special education said the program has “grown” in recent years during the school board meeting Tuesday evening.

Special Education Executive Director Jan Peronto said the district had over 5,000 students when she joined the department in 2016.

According to the district, KISD provides special education services to 6,527 students.

Peronto talked about an autism-focused program called “Castle” aimed to help students with “communication and social skills” and provide additional support.

KISD’s transition services program, Peronto said, is an area that has grown the most in recent years.

In past years, KISD has struggled to meet special education evaluation and testing timelines in agreement with federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) regulations.

A 2016 in-house audit found multiple deficiencies in the department.

Students with disabilities, ages 3 to 21, are entitled to a free, appropriate public education (FAPE), under federal law, that provides special education and related services designed to meet students’ unique needs, and prepare for further education, employment, and independent living. Read more about FAPE here: https://bit.ly/3sub22E.

Lawyers for Killeen family also representing George Floyd’s family

Some of the attorneys for the family of former Killeen resident Javier Ambler II are no strangers to cases of Black men who have died in police custody.

Ambler, who was raised in Killeen and went to Ellison High School, died in police custody on March 28, 2019, after a vehicle pursuit by the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office.

The Ambler family is represented by the Edwards Law Group, based in Austin, Ben Crump Law, which has offices across the country, and Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, based in Chicago.

Ben Crump and Antonio Romanucci of Romanucci & Blandin, LLC are working together with other law firms to represent the family of George Floyd who died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020. The murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin — who was shown in a video with his knee on Floyd’s neck — began this week.

In the Ambler case, former Williamson County Deputies James Johnson, 36, and Zachary Camden, 26, were indicted on charges of second-degree manslaughter on Monday.

Fort Hood brigade commander under investigation, accused of ‘toxic’ leadership

A 1st Cavalry Division brigade commander is under investigation after allegations of toxic leadership and violating coronavirus quarantines.

Col. Michael Schoenfeldt is the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team commander. The Fort Hood brigade deployed in November to Europe for Operation Atlantic Resolve, but Schoenfeldt departed Germany for Texas in February because of unspecified health reasons, division officials said.

The division has initiated investigations into various alleged concerns of counter-productive leadership and violations of COVID mitigation policy while in Europe, a division spokesman said.

The death of Spc. Vanessa Guillen last year sparked an independent investigation that found a pervasive climate of abuse and sexual harassment at Fort Hood, leading to the relief or suspension of at least 14 leaders by December. Soldiers in the brigade told the Stars and Stripes that the toxic climate in their unit continued well after the findings of widespread dysfunction were reported to Congress.

Killeen workers continue patchwork road repair

Killeen city workers are continuing efforts to repair damaged roads caused by widespread ice in February.

Roads throughout the city were damaged as water froze, thawed and then froze again during frigid temperatures between Feb. 12 and 19.

The temporary fixes are attempting to bridge the gap to a more significant repair plan. The city council recently approved $4.25 million in additional road maintenance funding to assist the fixes, according to a post on the city of Killeen Facebook page.

At a March 2 Killeen City Council workshop, City Manager Kent Cagle estimated that the city will need an additional $40 million to repair the damage from the recent winter weather system which crippled much of Texas, resulting in loss of power and water service to many homes and covering the Killeen area in ice. This is on top of around $120 million in needed road repairs the city has talked about in the past.

Former KISD bus driver arrested on child porn possession, parents in the dark

Some parents are saying they are upset after not being informed by school officials that a former Killeen ISD bus driver was arrested in the fall on child pornography charges, according to a local TV station.

Robert Speed’s final day as a KISD bus driver was Sept. 29, 2020, which is the same day his home in Copperas Cove was raided, according to a report by KWTX.

Many KISD parents were not notified by the district about the arrest, according to the local CBS affiliate.

The Texas attorney general’s Texas Child Exploitation Unit raided Speed’s home after a tip came into the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children CyberTipline that child pornography videos were being uploaded to a Google account, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by KWTX. The videos reportedly showed children between the ages of 2 and 10 forced to perform sexual acts.

Speed, 45, is in the Milam County Jail with a bond set at $150,000.

Compiled by Thaddeus Imerman. For more on these and other stories, go to www.kdhnews.com.

Here is a list of the Top 10 most-read stories on kdhnews.com last week:

1) “New Dutch Bros opens in Killeen; long line reported” — http://bit.ly/WIRDutchBros

2) “Man arrested after allegedly hitting child in Killeen parking lot” — http://bit.ly/WIRarrest

3) “Poor Practice: KISD training may have led to bus accident, drivers say” — http://bit.ly/WIRbuses

4) “Body found during welfare check in East Texas” — http://bit.ly/WIRwelfarecheck

5) “Fort Hood brigade commander under investigation, accused of ‘toxic’ leadership” — http://bit.ly/WIRcommander

6) “Naked woman arrested after trespassing in Killeen” — http://bit.ly/WIRtrespass

7) “Killeen man accused of stalking woman, and then crashing into her” — http://bit.ly/WIRstalking

8) “Walls have gone up at new restaurant in Killeen” — http://bit.ly/WIRwalls

9) “Family of slain former Fort Hood soldier says Army should have intervened” — http://bit.ly/WIRintervene

10) “Killeen woman gets probation for threatening to kill police officer” — http://bit.ly/WIRprobation

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