Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Friday, Dec. 16, 2022. Check back later today for updated story links and audio.
State lawmakers expected a report from the state’s Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Review Committee to be published months ago. Now that it’s here, it shows childbirth in Texas has gotten more dangerous – and the danger is inequitable. Joining us to tell us more is Eleanor Klibanoff, women’s health reporter for the Texas Tribune.
El Paso officials expect upwards of 5,000 migrants a day at the border if Title 42 is lifted, as expected. But many asylum-seekers are not waiting for the pandemic health order to expire in five days. What El Paso is experiencing could be a preview of what to expect along other stretches of the Texas-Mexico border. El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego joins us to talk about how El Paso is coping now and preparing for next week.
Decision on death row retrial coming soon
The state’s highest criminal court will decide if a Texas death row inmate will get a new trial. As KERA’s Pablo Arauz Peña reports, a Dallas judge recommended Randy Halperin should be given a retrial after finding bias in the original judge’s sentence:
As Texas enters winter’s coldest months, memories of 2021’s winter blackout are fresh for many. Hundreds lost their lives, and thousands more have looked into preparing for similar disasters. Monty Dozier, director of the Disaster Assessment and Recovery Program at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, joins us with some winter preparedness tips.
The Louisiana Department of Health says over 40 people got sick after eating raw oysters in Louisiana restaurants. But Louisiana oysters weren’t to blame; Texas oysters were. They all came out of a particular part of Galveston Bay, where wild oysters and farmed oysters are harvested. Jason Heid recently took a deep dive into the state oyster business for Texas Monthly, and he joins us with an overview.
Over the course of a few decades, a patch of land near I-45 outside of Houston was the site of a series of grisly discoveries. Dubbed “the Texas Killing Fields,” the bodies of dozens of murdered women and girls were found there, dating back to the early 1970s. And while several suspects have been put forward over the years, many of the murders remain unsolved. Now, the Netflix docuseries “Crime Scene” turns a spotlight on four of the murder victims, and their families’ pursuit to find justice. Documentary photojournalist and filmmaker Jessica Dimmock joins us today.
The gang delivers another custom poem. Get in touch with your own topic suggestions!
The week in Texas politics
The Texas Tribune’s James Barragán offers up a political recap, including Gov. Greg Abbott’s push for increased penalties for human smugglers, Texas Republicans calling for a new national chair, and Attorney General Ken Paxton’s latest suit against the federal government.
All this, plus the Texas Newsroom’s state roundup and Wells Dunbar with the Talk of Texas.