American Scene: 1 dead, 3 hurt in gunfire near Texas courthouse

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BEAUMONT — A man opened fire Wednesday outside a Texas courthouse where he was on trial in a family dispute, killing an elderly woman and wounding three other people, including a daughter he ran over with a pickup truck as he tried to escape, authorities said.

Bartholomew Granger, 41, was being held at a jail without bond after being treated at a hospital following his arrest on a murder charge, police said.

Mr. Granger was outside the Jefferson County Courthouse in Beaumont before the continuation of his trial, grabbed a gun from his truck and began shooting, authorities said.

The woman was fatally struck as she tried to run into the courthouse, while Mr. Granger’s daughter and another bystander fell to the ground. Several law enforcement officers returned fire as the courthouse went into lockdown.

Mr. Granger allegedly was firing from his truck and then ran over his daughter as he drove away. He went about three blocks before abandoning his truck in the middle of the street then taking hostages in a nearby construction business, police said. Once inside, Mr. Granger spoke by phone to police and told them he was wounded. He eventually surrendered and was taken to the hospital.

WEST VIRGINIA

Former guard appeals conviction in 2010 mine explosion

BECKLEY — A former security chief found guilty of lying to investigators about the 2010 explosion that killed 29 West Virginia miners is appealing his conviction.

An attorney for Hughie Elbert Stover says he’s taking the case to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond.

A filing in U.S. District Court in Beckley says Judge Irene Berger wrongly denied a request for certain instructions to the jury, as well as Stover’s request for a new trial. That motion also alleged prosecutorial misconduct.

Stover was convicted in October of ordering a subordinate to destroy security-related documents following the worst U.S. coal mine disaster in four decades.

He was sentenced to three years in prison Feb. 29. It’s one of the stiffest punishments ever issued in a mine safety case.

NEW YORK

New frog species found in city

NEW YORK — Scientists have identified a new species of leopard frog in and around New York City. The frog was found hiding in plain sight on Staten Island.

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