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BROWNSVILLE — Texas space aficionados hope rockets will someday be launched into orbit from a beachside site near the U.S.-Mexico border, but a tight state budget and a previously frustrated attempt to land such a spaceport could complicate efforts. Backers of a proposal to build a launch site at Boca Chica Beach, about 25 miles east of Brownsville, concede finding more money to lure California-based SpaceX to the state's southernmost tip will be a challenge. By Christopher Sherman.
TEXANS OF THE YEAR
DALLAS — The Dallas Morning News Texans of the Year are two men who after being exonerated following years in prison for crimes they did not commit have devoted themselves to exposing and fighting injustice. The News said in an editorial that exonerees Christopher Scott and Michael Morton, who were serving life sentences before being declared innocent, "opted this year to commit their time, fame and money to fixing the flawed justice system that came close to destroying their lives."
CONCORD, N.H. — Nearly a decade after it was first brought, a lawsuit accusing two oil giants of widespread groundwater contamination in New Hampshire is expected to present jurors with the most complex and time-consuming trial in state history. The products liability case against ExxonMobil and Citgo will be tried beginning in mid-January in a federal courtroom — on loan to the state — because it would undermine the rights of criminal defendants to a speedy trial if it tied up one of the three courtrooms in Merrimack Superior Court, officials said. By Lynne Tuohy
MEXICO CITY — Mexican marines have slain four gunmen who apparently were trying to steal the body of a Zetas cartel chieftain killed by the military a day before in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz. The state government said the gunmen evidently wanted to take the body of Angel Enrique Uscanga, nicknamed "The Pokemon," identified as the leader of the brutal gang in that region.
SAN ANTONIO — The state of Texas has told a chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas it can no longer use the Alamo for its private chapter business. The chapter had earlier lost its custodianship of the historic property amid allegations of mismanagement. The San Antonio Express-News reports that the Texas General Land Office had recently told the group's Alamo Mission Chapter to vacate the property.
SAN ANTONIO — The step-mother and father of a 5-year-old San Antonio boy who died have been arrested on charges of felony injury to a child. San Antonio police spokeswoman Sandy Gutierrez told the San Antonio Express-News reports that 27-year-old Crystal Williams and 25-year-old Charleston Williams were arrested without incident Friday afternoon. Gutierrez said the medical examiner found signs of serious abuse, malnutrition and neglect on the body of Josiah Williams, who was found unresponsive at the home on Thursday.
— BUSH HOSPITALIZED — Former President George H.W. Bush remains in intensive care in a Houston hospital recovering from a fever that arose after a long battle with bronchitis.
— AIR JORDANS-VIOLENCE — Two Houston teenagers have been charged with capital murder for fatally shooting a man over his new Air Jordan sneakers.
—SHOOTING-NO CHARGE — A grand jury in Texas has decided charges should not be brought against a woman who fatally shot her boyfriend.
SAN ANTONIO — Texas heads into the Alamo Bowl with Case McCoy and another player sent home amid a police investigation facing an Oregon State team wrapping up a turnaround season. 5:45 p.m. CST. By Paul J. Weber.
AP Photos. With hometown lead on losing team.