5 things for Houstonians to know for Friday, Jan. 29

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (left) and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (right).
U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (left) and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (right). (Getty Images)

Here are things to know for Friday, Jan. 29:

1. Gov. Greg Abbott vows to fight Joe Biden’s energy and climate agenda

Gov. Greg Abbott, looking to show an early contrast with President Joe Biden, visited the Permian Basin on Thursday and announced a series of steps the state would be taking to push back against the new Democratic administration when it comes to the oil and gas industry.

During a news conference in Odessa, the Republican governor vowed that Texas would pursue an aggressive legal strategy against the Biden administration much like Abbott, then the attorney general, did against former President Barack Obama. Abbott signed an executive order that he said would “direct every state agency to use all lawful powers and tools to challenge any federal action that threatens the” energy sector in Texas. And he announced his support for legislation that “prohibits cities and counties from banning natural gas appliances,” railing against a similar move last year by San Francisco.

“I am in Midland to make clear that Texas is going to protect the oil and gas industry from any type of hostile attack from Washington, D.C.,” said Abbott, who was actually speaking in the nearby city of Odessa at CUDD Energy Services. “Texas is not going to stand idly by and watch the Biden administration kill jobs in Midland, in Odessa or any other place across the entire region.”

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2. ‘Trying to get me killed’: Ocasio-Cortez tells Cruz to resign over his ‘role’ in Capitol riot

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) told U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Thursday there is “no common ground” to work together legislatively after his “role” in the Capitol riot earlier this month and urged him to resign.

“You almost had me murdered 3 weeks ago so you can sit this one out,” part of a tweet by Ocasio-Cortez read. “Happy to work w/ almost any other GOP that aren’t trying to get me killed. In the meantime if you want to help, you can resign.”

This message came after Cruz responded, “Fully agree,” to a tweet from Ocasio-Cortez, calling for an investigation into Robinhood’s decision to halt the purchase of GameStop stock.

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3. Texas A&M Galveston student missing, another found dead in dorm room, officials say

Two investigations are underway after a student at Texas A&M Galveston was found dead in a dorm room and another was reported missing.

The missing student is a freshman and was last seen Wednesday. When the cadet did not report for formation, officials started to inquire, according to authorities.

Officials said a search and rescue team, including the US Coast Guard, were dispatched to the campus Thursday to looks for the missing student. During the search, authorities said they discovered the body of another student inside one of the dorm rooms.

According to authorities, the student had called asking for a welfare check because he did not feel well. When someone arrived at the room, the student was dead, officials said.

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4. Families of couple killed in Harding Street drug raid sue Houston, police

The families of a couple killed in a 2019 drug raid by Houston police have alleged in newly filed lawsuits that the deaths of their loved ones were the tragic result of a narcotics unit that for years was rife with corruption and no accountability and now has many of its members under indictment.

Relatives of Dennis Tuttle, 59, and his wife, Rhogena Nicholas, 58, said on Thursday that filing the federal civil rights lawsuits is the only way they will get answers from police and city officials about how the couple was killed and will be a way to restore the reputations of their loved ones, who they say were falsely accused of being drug dealers.

At the time of the Jan. 28, 2019 raid, police had accused Tuttle and Nicholas of selling heroin from their home.

But prosecutors have since alleged one of the officers that led the raid, Gerald Goines, lied to obtain the warrant to search the couple’s home by claiming a confidential informant had bought heroin there. Goines later said there was no informant and he had bought the drugs himself, they allege. Police found small amounts of marijuana and cocaine in the house, but no heroin.

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5. Sources: Texans QB Deshaun Watson officially requests trade out of Houston

Sources are saying that Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson has officially requested to be traded out of Houston.

NFL sportswriter Ian Rapoport posted a tweet saying Watson asked for the trade and that he “has a no-trade clause, and by virtue of his contract, would decide what places would be acceptable.”

Rapaport also said if the Texans were to trade Watson, that both sides would have to come to a deal that works for both of them and “Watson would provide written notice that he would allow a trade to that team. Otherwise no deal.”

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