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May 18, 2015

Nine dead after biker gang feud in Texas

Filed under: Archived,Crime and law,Texas,Waco, Texas — admin @ 5:00 am

Nine dead after biker gang feud in Texas

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Monday, May 18, 2015

Texas
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Nine people are dead and eighteen injured after a shootout among alleged rival biker gangs broke out inside a sports bar in Texas yesterday.

The violence erupted at Twin Peaks Sports Bar and Grill inside a shopping mall in Waco. The fight which included up to five biker gangs quickly escalated, resulting in a gunfire battle across two car parks. Waco Sergeant Patrick Swanton said an argument about a parking spot may have sparked the fight.

Restaurant customers said they waited out the fight with staff locked in a freezer room. Swanton said all but one of the deaths occurred at the scene, with the ninth in hospital.

Swanton said, “This is probably one of the most gruesome crime scenes I’ve ever seen in my 34 years of law enforcement”, and, “I was amazed that we didn’t have innocent civilians killed or injured.”

Police officers were present and quick to intervene when the shooting broke out as they knew beforehand of a planned meeting.



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February 16, 2009

US military says \’fireballs\’ spotted over Texas are not related to satellite collision

US military says ‘fireballs’ spotted over Texas are not related to satellite collision

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Monday, February 16, 2009

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The United States military Strategic Command (STRATCOM) has said that the ‘fireballs’ spotted over areas of Texas in the United States on Sunday February 15, are not related to the collision of a U.S. and Russian satellite in space. According to spaceweather.com, NASA says the object was a meteor.

“There is no correlation between the debris from that collision and those reports of re-entry,” said STRATCOM military spokeswoman Major Maj. Regina.

“It’s a natural meteor, definitely,” said Bill Cooke, an astronomer at NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office.

On Tuesday, February 10, the American civilian communications satellite Iridium 33, launched in 1997, and the defunct Russian military communications satellite Kosmos-2251, launched in 1993, collided over Siberia. On Friday February 13, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued an alert for falling debris from the satellites, following reports of “explosions and earthquakes” along with “flashes in the sky” in Jackson and Louisville, Kentucky.

Then again on Sunday, calls to 9-1-1 began to come in to Williamson County, Texas sheriff’s office around 12:30 p.m. (Central time) that burning debris and fireballs were seen falling from the sky onto parts of Austin, Houston, Waco and San Antonio.

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“The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported to local law enforcement on Friday that these events are being caused by falling satellite debris. These pieces of debris have been causing sonic booms, resulting in vibrations felt by some residents, as well as flashes of light across the sky,” said the NOAA on Friday in an public information alert posted on their website. The FAA says the burning material over Texas is not related to this alert.

“We don’t know what it was [over Texas],” said Roland Herwig, a spokesman for the FAA on Monday. The alerts still remain in effect in Kentucky until further notice.

Residents in Texas reported their homes and windows shaking and large explosions on Sunday morning. After a search of several areas, the Williamson county sheriff’s office reported that no debris or impact sites were found. Earlier unconfirmed reports had said the debris could have been the result of a small plane exploding.

There was previous speculation was that the object in Texas could have been a meteor. Doctor Marco Ciocca, a professor at Eastern Kentucky University told WKYT on Sunday that it’s too early for the debris from the satellites to be reentering the planet’s atmosphere. “[It could] be months” before any of the satellite wreckage enters the earth’s atmosphere. “The debris doesn’t simply fall out of its orbit. It will either vaporize or stay in orbit for some time before falling into earth’s atmosphere.”

However, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) said on February 12 that the debris could have taken 10 days or less to reenter over portions of the planet.

“Within 24 hours of the collision, the U.S. space tracking system had identified 600 pieces of debris. This large number suggests that the collision must have been relatively head-on. If the two satellites hit head-on, rather than a glancing blow, the energy of the collision would completely disintegrate both satellites into clouds of debris,” said the UCS in a statement on their website who also added that the collision took place in “the same region of space where China destroyed a defunct Chinese weather satellite with an anti-satellite (ASAT) weapon” in 2007. “That January 2007 test created a massive amount of debris.” There have been at least eight major satellite collisions since 1991.

The satellites, both of which had a mass in excess of 450 kilograms, and were traveling at approximately 17,500 miles per hour (28,150 km/hour), collided 491 miles (790 km) above the earth. Scientists say the explosion caused by the collision was massive. They are still trying to determine just how large the crash was and how the earth will be affected. STRATCOM continues to track the debris. The results of a plotting analysis will be posted to a public website.

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  • Space Weather (Article in relation to fireball on front page. Retrieved: February 16, 2009 at 9:06 a.m. EST.
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February 15, 2009

Burning debris from satellites spotted over several US cities

Burning debris from satellites spotted over several US cities

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Science and technology
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On Tuesday, February 10, the American civilian communications satellite Iridium 33, launched in 1997, and the defunct Russian military communications satellite Kosmos-2251, launched in 1993, collided over Siberia. Five days after the collision, reports have surfaced that burning debris from the collision has been spotted over several U.S. cities from New Mexico to Kentucky.

Calls to 9-1-1 began to come in to Williamson County, Texas sheriff’s office around 12:30 p.m. (CT) that burning debris and fireballs were seen falling from the sky onto parts of Austin, Houston, Waco and San Antonio. Residents reported their homes and windows shaking and large explosions. After a search of several areas, the Williamson county sheriff’s office reported that no debris or impact sites were found. Earlier unconfirmed reports had said the debris could have been the result of a small plane exploding.

Iridium satellite.
Image: ideonexus.

Steve Thornton, a resident in Austin told KEYE-TV that he “saw something burn up in the atmosphere going east to west at 40 degrees in the horizon looking north” which was “about the size of a half moon and as bright as a welders torch”. Other residents reported to KEYE-TV that they saw an “egg-shape with an orange center and bluish outer aura; a silvery-white tail.” Some report the incident lasting about 10 minutes.

On February 13, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued an alert following reports of “explosions and earthquakes” along with “flashes in the sky” in Jackson and Louisville, Kentucky. There were no injures and authorities could not locate any damage.

“The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported to local law enforcement on Friday that these events are being caused by falling satellite debris. These pieces of debris have been causing sonic booms, resulting in vibrations felt by some residents, as well as flashes of light across the sky,” said the NOAA in a public information statement on February 13. The FAA also warns that the debris could cause damage to aircraft in areas reporting falling debris.

“Aircraft are advised that a potential hazard may occur due to reentry of satellite debris into the Earth’s atmosphere. It is critical that all pilots/crew members report any observed falling space debris,” said the FAA on February 13. Both the NOAA and FAA alerts are in place until further notice and cover an area from New Mexico to Kentucky.

However, Dr. Marco Ciocca, a professor at Eastern Kentucky University told WKYT in Kentucky it would “be months” before any of the satellite wreckage enters the Earth’s atmosphere. “The debris doesn’t simply fall out of its orbit. It will either vaporize or stay in orbit for some time before falling into Earth’s atmosphere.”

The satellites, both of which weighed in excess of 1,000 pounds, and traveling at approximately 17,500 miles per hour, collided 491 miles above the Earth. Scientists say the explosion caused by the collision was massive. They are still trying to determine just how large the crash was and how the Earth will be affected. The United States Strategic Command of the U.S. Department of Defense office is tracking the debris. The result of plotting analysis will be posted to a public website.


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  • “Russian and US satellites collide” — Wikinews, February 13, 2009

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November 24, 2008

SpaceX successfully test fires Falcon 9 rocket in Texas

SpaceX successfully test fires Falcon 9 rocket in Texas

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Monday, November 24, 2008

A Merlin rocket engine. Each Falcon 9 rocket uses 9 Merlin engines
Image: SpaceX.

A computer simulation of a Falcon 9 launch
Image: NASA.

At 10:30pm on November 23, 2008, near the airport in McGregor, Texas, Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) tested their new Falcon 9 rocket at full thrust for nearly 3 minutes (160 seconds). The engineers then shut down two of the nine engines — in order to limit potential damage to the launch pad — and continued the test for 18 more seconds before finally shutting the rocket down. “We ran the engines just like they would run during flight, but instead of being up in the air, they were held down. They weren’t moving,” said Lauren Dreyer, SpaceX’s manager for business development. This was the Falcon 9’s first major test firing, and it marks a milestone for the company in its plans to capture a section of the commercial launch market.

The test reportedly shook the windows of houses 5 miles away, causing agitation among residents who felt that they had not received adequate warning. “I appreciate the fact that the company notified [the City of] McGregor, but did they not think the test would affect the surrounding communities?” asked commenter Lorena Resident on the website for the Waco Tribune-Herald. Waco lies just east of McGregor.

The Falcon 9 rocket, and its smaller sibling the Falcon 1, are the first rockets capable of entering Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to have their design be privately funded in its entirety. According to SpaceX the Falcon 9 can generate 4 times the maximum thrust of a Boeing 747 while firing in a vacuum, and will eventually be able to perform interplanetary missions in addition to its initial role as an orbital launch vehicle. SpaceX is also designing a crew and cargo capsule for the Falcon 9, which it has named the “Dragon“.

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SpaceX is a contender for future commercial contracts from various government run space agencies, with NASA expressing particular interest. NASA will be retiring their fleet of Columbia Class Space Shuttles in 2010, but will not have the Shuttles’ replacements (the Ares I and Ares V rockets) ready until at least 2014. NASA hopes to fill some of this gap using commercial launches from companies such as SpaceX. SpaceX has already reached an agreement with NASA to conduct three test flights of the Dragon capsule in conjunction with the Falcon 9. The first of these flights is expected in 2009.

Elon Musk, CEO and CTO of SpaceX, said, “The full mission-length test firing clears the highest hurdle for the Falcon 9 first stage before launch. In the next few months, we will have the first Falcon 9 flight vehicle on its launch pad at Cape Canaveral, preparing for lift-off in 2009.”

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May 6, 2006

Tornadoes cause millions in damages in Waco, Texas

Tornadoes cause millions in damages in Waco, Texas

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Saturday, May 6, 2006

Early Saturday morning winds up to 90 miles per hour struck Waco, Texas and central McLennan County, United States, causing widespread damage and leaving many households without electricity.

No deaths or serious injuries have been reported; however, there is a tremendous amount of damage in 15 areas of the city, leading Mayor Virgina DuPuy to declare the city a disaster area.

The hardest hit area was Franklin Avenue, where the Coca-Cola bottling plant’s roof was peeled open as if by a giant can-opener. There were Sprite bottles spread out onto the street. The nearby Furniture Row shopping center was also hit hard. Some furniture was found as far as three-quarters of a mile away. Other hard-hit areas were Robinson, Hewitt, Woodway, and Speegleville. Densely populated Inner Waco was spared of any catastrophic damage, though hundreds, and possibly thousands, of trees have fallen, and roofs destroyed.

The main concern is restoring power to over 23,000 households and businesses. Many gas stations and grocery stores in the disaster areas were closed until power is restored. Those that remained open have had to throw out all perishable items. Also of concern is getting electricity to those with medical needs. The city has provided help to those without power at the Dewey Recreation Center.

The storm is the hardest to hit the area since the tornado that struck on May 11, 1953, which tore through downtown and killed 114 people.

Waco has seen more than its share of tornadoes recently. Only a week ago, an F1 tornado damaged many houses along Orchid and Kendall Lanes. No people were injured, though two horses were killed when their stable collapsed.

The National Weather Service confirmed this morning’s winds were a F2 tornado, where wind speeds may have reached 115 miles per hour in some locations.

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November 23, 2005

Anti-war protesters defy new Texas laws

Anti-war protesters defy new Texas laws – Wikinews, the free news source

Anti-war protesters defy new Texas laws

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Wednesday, November 23, 2005

“Give me liberty or give me a ditch” was the sign being held by one protester in Crawford, Texas. A dozen war protesters were arrested Wednesday for camping near President Bush’s ranch in defiance of new local bans on roadside camping and parking. The protests have been planned during President Bush’s six day Thanksgiving visit to his ranch.

The protest was an act of civil disobedience, said Hadi Jawad, co-founder of the Crawford Peace House, “We want to challenge the encroachment of our civil rights”. It was aimed to contest new regulations established by McLennan County commissioners banning parking and camping around the roads leading to President George W Bush’s ranch. The constitutionality of these regulations, effected by a 3-2 vote in September, have been challenged in court by the Texas Civil Rights Project, and the U.S District for Waco refused their motion for a temporary restraining order over the enforcement of these new regulations while the case is heard. The new rules were established following the much larger protests led by Cindy Sheenan earlier this year.

Among the protestors were Daniel Ellsberg, a former military analyst and political activist, whose exposure of the Pentagon Papers brought to light the Nixon administration’s attempt to “spin” the Vietnam War; Ann Wright, a senior US diplomat who resigned her post over the decision to invade Iraq; and an Iraq war veteran. Ellsberg was among those arrested.

The White House has refused to comment on the return of the protestors.

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