News Roundup: Exchange Student’s Parents Join Lawsuit Against Alleged Santa Fe Shooter’s Parents

Our daily look at Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelNovember 30, 2018 1:50 pm

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

The parents of a Pakistani exchange student killed during the school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas have joined a lawsuit against the suspected shooter’s parents. The alleged gunman, 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis has been charged with capital murder and aggravated assault on a peace officer.

Houston Public Media’s Laurie Johnson reports.

17-year-old Sabika Sheikh was one of 10 people killed in the shooting at Santa Fe High School on May 18. Now, her parents, Abdul Aziz and Farah Naz Sheikh, have joined a lawsuit previously filed by some of the victims’ family members. The suit alleges the 17-year-old suspect’s parents “negligently and irresponsibly stored their firearms so their son could access them.” It also claims they failed to respond to warning signs their son might be a danger to others.

An attorney for the suspect’s parents denies any liability on their part and says they can’t be held accountable for crimes committed by someone else.

Sabika was in the United States as part of a State Department-sponsored Exchange Program. In Houston, I’m Laurie Johnson.

The Texas General Land Office says a program that provides trailers to people who lost their homes in Hurricane Harvey is getting an extension. Nearly 1,600 households are still in Temporary Housing Units.

Land Commissioner George P. Bush asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide the temporary housing for another six months. The FEMA program was originally set to expire in February because that will mark 18 months since the disaster. Bush also asked for a rent waiver. GLO spokesperson Brittany Eck says that request was denied.

“And the rent is considered minimal,” Eck says. “It will be based on fair market value with consideration for the individual’s income level.”

The temporary housing units will now be available through August 25, 2019. In some areas, people will have the chance to purchase their FEMA trailer.

Friday, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department begins stocking the state’s ponds, lakes and rivers with rainbow trout. More than 170 locations will soon be brimming with the fish.

Aubry Buzek is a spokesperson for the state agency.

“Rainbow trout typically do better in cool weather, so this has become a winter tradition once the temperatures start to drop, we start looking at putting rainbow trout in for kind of a winter fishing option for families and anglers,” Buzek says.

Buzek adds it’s rare for trout to reproduce in Texas, so they’re brought in from out of state.

“So most of our hatchery trout, they actually come from Missouri. They take a pretty long trip down to Texas,” Buzek says.

Texas Parks and Wildlife will be stocking more than 320,000 rainbow trout at all locations through March. And Buzek says this is an especially popular season for fishing.

“Definitely if you want some tips, some insider tips, get their early. If you want to keep any of the rainbow trout, you’re going to want to have some ice with you,” she says. “And if you are going to go fishing at one of our stocking sites make sure you keep a safe and courteous distance from fellow anglers.”

Children under 17 can fish for free, but adults are required to have a fishing license. But, if you’re casting your line in Texas state parks, no license is required.