Dallas Police Raid on Oak Cliff Gambling Room Brings Relief to Worried Neighbors

Categories: Crime

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Antoine Taveneaux
The casino in question probably did not look like this.

Community leaders in Oak Cliff's Elmwood neighborhood are happy that an illegal casino has been crippled by the Dallas Police Department, after they spent months putting up with nuisances and threats from it and its patrons.

Elmwood residents first noticed something out of the ordinary was going on at the property in January. That's when the woman who leads the Elmwood neighborhood association's code compliance committee began hearing about increased activity at what she and her neighbors assumed was a vacant building.

"I received a call from the owner of Your Second Look [a salon located near the casino], and she said that she was doing hair late one afternoon and someone walked into her shop and asked her if it was the game room," said the woman, who asked us not to name her because she feared retaliation.

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Three More Former Employees Sue Boss Accused of Stun-Gunning an Employee in the Junk

Categories: Crime

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Screenshot of the company's website
Christopher Key seems to have set the ball rolling. Last week, his lawyer filed a lawsuit claiming his boss, Neil Chopra, at a Carrollton janitorial services company sexually harassed him by punching him in the testicles and, one time, stun-gunning him in the groin. On Monday, three more employees filed lawsuits against the company and Chopra.

In June 2012, an employee claims she was forced to quit because of how Chopra treated her. She claims he would comment on her breasts and butt, saying she had a "J-Lo ass" and asking, sarcastically, "Can you wear any tighter pants?" One time, while she was washing her hands in the company kitchen, Chopra snuck up behind her and placed his face inches away from her butt, she claims. When she told an administrator about her boss' actions, the administrator said "this is just the way it is" at the company.

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A Mentally Ill Prisoner's Family Is Suing Tarrant County over His Jail-House Murder

Categories: Crime

Brandon Thibodeaux
Jonathan Holden's sister claims mismanagement in a Tarrant County jail lead to his murder.
Jonathan Holden did not meet a good end. He suffered from psychotic episodes, delusions and paranoid schizophrenia. He used meth. About two years ago, because he broke into a car to escape a cold night, he found himself in a high-risk unit of a jail in Fort Worth. One day, while Holden was in his single-man cell, another inmate was outside his.

See also:
Imaginary Monsters Chased Jonny Holden All His Life, Then a Real One Caught Him
A Sister Goes to Meet Her Brother's Killer, and an Inmate Tells of Watching Him Die

Steven Lawayne Nelson was on his one-hour rotation, a time when one inmate is allowed to walk around the jail floor while the others are confined. Authorities say Nelson, who is now on death row for killing a preacher, was violent and often threatened his girlfriend's life. With a broomstick, he prodded Holden through the bars, then told Holden he could help him stage a fake suicide attempt, which would get Holden out of the unit. Holden approached the bars.

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A Carrollton Worker's Boss Punched and Stun-Gunned Him in the Junk, Lawsuit Claims

Categories: Crime

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Screenshot of the company's website
Christopher Key claims his boss hit him in the groinal region for months before he finally quit.
Total Building Maintenance, Inc., in Carrollton, is in the business of cleanliness. For its corporate clients, it cleans carpets and washes windows, among other janitorial duties. But if a new lawsuit filed recently is to be believed, the company, especially its chief operations officer, Neil Chopra, has been engaged in some less-than-clean activities.

In mid-2011, a man named Christopher Key started working for the cleaning company. He moved up its ranks quickly. After only a few months, he was promoted, and Chopra became his immediate supervisor. Around the same time as his promotion, however, Key's boss hit him for the first time, he claims in the lawsuit.


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Suspect Arrested in Sunday Morning Gas Station Killing

Categories: Crime

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Google Street View
The Raceway Gas Station at 303 E. Ledbetter Drive

Ranji Charles, a Dallas man implicated in two early Sunday morning murders in southern Dallas, is in critical condition at Methodist Central Hospital, police say.

Charles is alleged to have been riding in a car with two men -- Corey Shannon and Elliot Byes -- when the trio pulled into the Raceway gas station near the intersection of Interstate 35 and Ledbetter Drive in a gray Ford Taurus.

At the station, surveillance video shows Charles getting out of the car and popping the trunk and grabbing something, before heading to the passenger side window to talk to Shannon.


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David Brown Is Making Dallas Safer Through Smart Policing, but Not without Controversy

Categories: Crime

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Can Turkyilmaz
In this week's Dallas Observer we profile 20 of the metro area's most interesting characters, with new portraits of each from local photographer Can Turkyilmaz. See the entire Dallas Observer People Issue here.

Dallas Police Chief David Brown didn't need to be told there was unrest. The barest recitation of facts -- 31-year-old male, unarmed, dead from a cop's bullet in Dixon Circle -- was enough. He knew the South Dallas neighborhood as a powder keg, just as it had been when his SWAT team was called there 20 years earlier to check the seething outrage that followed the Rodney King case. One spark could set it off, and James Harper's July 2012 death threatened to become a flamethrower.

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Arlington Man Who Developed Ingenious Process for Counterfeiting $100 Bills Sentenced

Categories: Crime

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Revisorweb
Not one of Knight's.

Cloyd Ray Knight III had a great run.

He began to perfect a process to make phony $100 bills in 2004, operating what amounted to a small print shop out of his Arlington home.

Knight began by applying a layer of acrylic paint to newspaper print paper. Then he would print a simulated watermark on the paper and add his own security stripe before printing front and rear images on the bills with one of the 38 printers the feds would eventually seize. To finish his handiwork, Knight would apply a dulling agent to the bills to give them the consistency of legitimate currency.

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The T-Shirt Bandit Bank Robber Couldn't Stay Away, So He's Going Away (Again)

Categories: Crime

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Steven Depolo
The bandit made off with more than $6,000 at four banks.
Back in 2006, William Clark Perschman robbed 18 banks in Dallas. He would put a T-shirt over his head to conceal his identity, and it earned him the less-than-stellar nickname of "T-Shirt Bandit."

He was caught and went to federal prison. Five years later, he was released on a supervised release program. He would have been free of the program in February of this year, but it appears he just couldn't help himself.

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Lured to Dallas and Forced into Prostitution, a Victim Finally Finds (Some) Justice

Categories: Crime

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Pete
The victim was forced to perform in front of a web cam to prove her love.
Back in 2005, a woman, living on disability in Chicago, was contacted online by a man, he apparently as lonely as she. He promised to marry her, said he could cure her health woes, according to the case laid out by prosecutors. Before they could be together, though, he told her she had to prove her love to him. She set up a web cam, and the man tuned in. He instructed her to "mutilate" herself, although exactly what that means is unclear. It is clear, though, that she did whatever he said.

The man's name is Duc Luu, a middle-aged naturalized U.S. citizen. He was born in Vietnam and has a second-grade education. His promises of marriage and relief from her medical issues was enough to make the woman move from the wintry north to Dallas. Once here, Luu groomed her to be a prostitute.

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A&E's The First 48 May Have Helped a Dallas Murder Suspect Avoid Conviction -- For Now

Categories: Crime

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Dallas County
Daniel Brooks and his lawyer didn't allow After The First 48, a spinoff of The First 48, to film Brooks' trial.
The camera guy was already there when Detective Scott Sayers pulled up to the 79-year-old victim's Earlywood Drive home in March of last year, ready to gather footage for A&E's true-crime reality show, The First 48. There was a phone number detectives could call to notify a camera crew that they were dispatched to a homicide. This time, the crew beat the detective.

Sayers entered the house and found the victim on the dining room floor. Someone had hit her with a stool and strangled her. The cameras soaked the scene in, footage that would later be used in the 13th season's 22nd episode, which aired in early October 2013. The footage would also play a role in foiling prosecutors' case, at least for the moment.

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