Docs: Surveillance video assisted in Weslaco burglary-turned-murder investigation

A probable cause affidavit indicates surveillance footage assisted Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office investigators in determining a murder charge against a 41-year-old woman, who reported that she shot a man during a burglary. Sheriff’s deputies initially encountered Emma Linda Gracia on Jan. 18 at 7:34 a.m. at 1318 E. 25th St. in rural Weslaco after responding to a call of burglary of a habitation. Read the full story at

Spirit of volunteerism shines at 2020 Winter Texan Expo and Health Fair

BENJAMIN TREVINO | STAFF WRITER More than 9,000 people attended this year’s Winter Texan Expo and Health Fair held recently at the McAllen Convention Center. The...

RGC city secretary accused of hiding recorder in human resources office

The Starr County Sheriff's Office says Rio Grande City's city secretary was arrested Friday and charged with unlawful interception, use or disclosure of wire, oral or electronic communications. The city has placed its city secretary, Lyzette Peña, on administrative leave after being notified of an investigation. Read the full story at

IBC Bank announces promotions

IBC Bank-Brownsville recently announced the promotions of Lee Reed and Al Villarreal. The promotions were announced during the bank’s annual Bonus Presentation. Read the full story at

Legislature candidates push messages in forum as election season ramps up

Candidates seeking two state representative seats anchored in Hidalgo County displayed their cases on Thursday at the McAllen Chamber of Commerce, where they discussed medical marijuana, health care and transportation issues in the area. Challenging incumbent state Rep. Bobby Guerra, D-McAllen, were Democrat Richard Gonzales, a municipal judge in Edcouch, who is hoping to defeat Guerra in the March 3 primary election. The other candidate, Republican John Guerra, is an OB-GYN. Read the full story at

McAllen honors three legendary businesswomen at luncheon

People who know her are well aware that Dora Jean Sanchez doesn’t doubt herself. Sanchez, of De Sanchez Day Spa & Salon, explained as much Thursday during the All About Women Committee’s Legendary Businesswomen Luncheon at the Radisson Hotel in McAllen, where the McAllen Chamber of Commerce gave voice to three businesswomen and their journey toward becoming industry leaders in their communities. Her quick-witted response received a roar of laughter and applause which set the tone for the event. Read the full story at

Mission bond election pushed to November

The city council is pushing a proposed bond election to November after members expressed a desire for more time reduce the number of propositions they want to place on the ballot and more time to communicate with the public about the need for the projects. The consensus among the council members to delay the bond election until November was reached during a workshop held Wednesday evening during which they also suggested cutting down the number of propositions from the 18 that were initially proposed. Read the full story at

Governor orders flags at half-staff in honor of Villalon

Gov. Greg Abbott has ordered that the State and U.S. flags in Cameron County and surrounding counties be lowered and fly at half-staff in honor of Spc. Miguel A. Villalon, who was killed earlier this month in Afghanistan while conducting operations as part of Freedom’s Sentinel. The order comes from a request by the City of Brownsville that the flags be lowered to honor the 21-year-old Brownsville native. The flags will remain at half-staff until Villalon’s burial, which is Saturday. Read the full story at

Hundreds pay respect to Villalon

Some praying, some crying and some holding American flags, dozens of community members gathered at the Brownsville-South Padre International Airport to witness the arrival of the remains of U.S. Army Spc. Miguel Angel Villalon shortly before 4 p.m. on Thursday. Villalon, 21, a Brownsville native, was killed in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, on Jan. 11 while conducting operations in support of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, part of NATO’s Resolute Support Mission. Read the full story at

Monica Melissa Patterson’s capital murder conviction upheld

She befriended an elderly man in an attempt to steal his fortune. She stood by and watched as a man she hired suffocated the 96-year-old victim to death. And now, nearly four years later, she lost her first appeal. The 13th Court of Appeals affirmed 52-year-old Monica Melissa Patterson’s capital murder and theft convictions, as well as her automatic life sentence in prison for her role in the Jan. 28, 2015, suffocation death of Martin Knell in his McAllen home. The high court also confirmed her convictions for stealing more than $100,000 from Comfort House — a McAllen-based nonprofit that provides hospice care, and where Patterson served as the director at the time — to fund trips to Las Vegas as well as a graduation party for her son that cost more than $20,000, as well as her convictions for attempting to steal more than $200,000 from Knell. Read the full story at