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Two arrested in armed robbery of Woodville home

by Emily Waldrep

Two Port Author men were arrested after entering a Tyler County home, holding the residents at gunpoint, and stealing a large sum of money.

According to the Tyler County Sheriff's Department, a call came into dispatch on January 17 at approximately 9:46 a.m advising that two black males had entered a home in Woodville on Private Road 7505 and had pointed a pistol at various residents demanding money.

"The two assailants left in a tan sedan with a large amount of cash and were traveling south on Highway 69," Tyler County Sheriff Brian Weatherford said. "Sheriff's office deputies along with Officers from the Woodville Police department conducted a traffic stop about 9 miles south of Woodville on highway 69 on a vehicle matching the description given by the victim."

The two men in the vehicle matched the description given by the victims and were taken into custody without incident. Thanks to an eye witness, the pistol and cash were located and recovered by Deputies.

Upon further investigation, Tyler County Sheriff's Department discovered that the guns used in the crime were stolen from the city of Nederland.

The two men were identified as Daniel Keith Francis, age 31 of Houston and Jeremy O'Brian James, age 29, of Port Arthur.

Francis was charged with Aggravated Robbery, Tamper/Fabricate Physical Evidence with Intent to Impair, and Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Felon. Francis is still being held in the Tyler County Jail under a $140,000 bond.

James was charged with Aggravated Robbery and was released from jail under a $50,000 bond.

Chester residents find artificial hip parts while digging in yard

by Emily Waldrep

Tyler County Sheriff's Office and Woodville Police Department along with Constable Fuller (Precinct 2), TDCJ, the Texas Rangers and the FBI investigated a call from a Chester resident who had discovered what they thought to be an artificial hip joint in their yard on Saturday, January 19.

According to Phil Ryan and the Tyler County Sheriff's Department, the Chester residents had been digging in their backyard earlier in the summer when they found what they thought was a brake or clutch handle from a bike. When a second object was uncovered, they realized that it was an artificial hip and contacted Constable John Fuller.

Fuller then contacted the Tyler County Sheriffs department, who came out and cornered off the area and began an investigation.

"We made a few phone calls to try and investigate the serial number on the part," said officer Phil Ryan of the Tyler County Sheriffs Department. "No one had that part number in their databases. The Texas Rangers were then called out to assist since it would be such a large-scale area to try and recover any evidence from."

No other evidence has surfaced in the case, but the county will continue to contact databases to discover how the artificial hip parts ended up a backyard.

Sheriff Brian Weatherford want to thank the City of Woodville, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the Texas Rangers, the FBI and all other local agencies for their involvement in the investigation.

"This is just a sign of things to come here in Tyler County," Weatherford said. "I'm going to make sure we have a great working relationship with everybody involved and that state, local and federal agencies will work closely together to protect and serve the citizens of Tyler County."

Updates will be published as information is gathered.

Tyler County celebrates Martin Luther King Day

MLK-Day edit"Darkness Cannot Drive Out Darkness, Only Light Can Do That..."—The annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. day celebration was held in Woodville Monday, January 21. A parade through town was followed by an inspirational program at Kirby High Gym.

Silsbee man arrested for assault of family member

by Emily Waldrep

A Silsbee man was arrested on January 9 in Fred after Tyler County Sheriff's deputies received a call from his girlfriend who claimed that he had assaulted her.

Larry Crain, age 47, of Silsbee had gotten into an altercation with his girlfriend at her residence in Fred at approximately 3:30 a.m. Reports state that Crain tried to choke his girlfriend, and as she made an escape he grabbed onto her hair.

When Deputy Seale and Deputy Laurent of the Tyler County Sheriff's Department arrived on the scene, Crain was found lying on the couch with some of his girlfriend's hair still in his hand.

The victim did not receive any formal medical care, and Crain was issued a criminal trespass warning for the residence.

Crain was arrested and charged with assault of family/household member impeding breath/circulation.

Crain was booked into the Tyler County Jail and released under a bond of $25,000.

Dennis gets eight years for wire, firearms theft

by Emily Waldrep

Granville Owen Dennis Jr. will be serving 8 years in a state jail after he pled guilty to three counts of theft of wire or cable and one count of theft of a firearm.

Dennis pled guilty to the charges on January 10 in district court.

Dennis received 2 years in jail for every charge he pled guilty to, and a total of four charges will send him to jail for up to 8 years.

In addition to jail time, Dennis will also owe $3,000 in fines, $1,512 in court costs, and about $6,200 in restitution.

A report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau states that Texas generates over 2,000 claims of cable theft per year and has the second highest cable theft rate in the country.

You can report suspected wire and cable theft to the Sheriff's office by calling 283- 2172.