Hunt County – Brian Patrick today waived his right to a jury trial and pled guilty to the murder of James Prothro of Commerce, according to a news release by Hunt County District Attorney F. Duncan Thomas. Thomas said it was an open plea with no agreement as to punishment. The judge will decide punishment on February 28th after hearing evidence in the case.
Commerce – Jury selection is set to begin today in the murder trial of Brian Patrick, accused of killing a Commerce man last June. The 25-year-old is charged with murder and one count of felon in possession of a firearm in connection with the shooting death of 26-year-old James Prothro of Commerce. Patrick has entered a plea of not guilty to both charges.
Prothro was shot in the 600 block of Fourth Street in Commerce June 30th and was later pronounced dead after being transported by helicopter to Parkland Hospital in Dallas.
Fannin County – Quick response and cooperation helped to quickly contain a grass fire in Fannin County yesterday. A cigarette butt is suspected to be the cause of a fire that started along FM 2815. Quick response by the Randolph and Bailey volunteer fire departments and emergency personnel from the U.S. Forest Service helped contain the blaze that scorched 5 acres, ignited hay bales, and threatened two homes.
Commerce – The Commerce Police Department has a new officer. Rocco, the department's new drug dog, has joined the force. Rocco is the culmination of an agreement between the City of Commerce and Commerce ISD in a joint effort to pay for and care for the dog. CISD paid up-front costs to secure the dog, but will see a significant discount for drug dog services on campus.
Greenville – A donation of 30 acres of land, including frontage on Interstate 30, has been made to the Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum. The tract of land was donated by the estate of Charles and Mauricia Fugitt, whose dairy farm once encompassed 70 acres, including the current grounds of the museum. The donation was made with the understanding the land would be used for a nature trail, wildlife habitat, or a similar public purpose.
Las Vegas – The A&M-Commerce women's basketball team went 1-1 on the road in Vegas, downing one nationally ranked team. The Lions defeated 18th ranked Central Missouri 66-59 in the Southwest Regional Challenge Tuesday, led by Piggy Mosley and Kanani Marshal who put up 15 points each.