Tarrant for Hillary hosts Ready for Hillary bus and rally

Posted on 18 Dec 2014 at 12:34pm
Tarrant for Hillary, a group of Tarrant County residents urging former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to run for president in 2016, hosted the touring Ready for Hillary bus yesterday (Wednesday, Dec. 17) at Cowtown Diner, 305 Main Street, in Fort Worth. Local elected officials including Rep. Marc Veasey, D-Fort Worth, Justice of the Peace Sergio de Leon, Fort Worth City Councilman Sal Espino and Haltom City Councilwoman Stephanie Davenport, spoke in support of a potential Clinton run.

BREAKING: Suspects arrested in Ashlea Harris murder

0700 flashTwo suspects have been arrested in connection to the murder of Ashlea Harris.

Per the Fort Worth Police Department:

Clarence David Mallory and Carter Carol Cervantez were signed and bond for each was set at $500,000.

On December 5, 2014,Mallory was taken into custody by Amarillo based members of the United States Marshal Service North Texas Fugitive Task Force.  He was apprehended at a private residence without incident.  Mallory was booked into Potter County Jail.  Fort Worth Police Department Fugitive Officers travelled to Amarillo and transported Mallory to the Fort Worth Police Homicide Unit to be interviewed by detectives.  After speaking with detectives, Mallory will be booked into the Fort Worth Jail for Capital Murder and an additional charge of Theft $1500-$20,000 with a bond of $100,000.

On Dec. 6, 2014, Cervantez was taken into custody by Tarrant County Sherriffs and was then transported to the Fort Worth Jail by Fugitive Officers where she was booked in on the Capital Murder warrant with a bond of $500,000 as well as a warrant for Theft $1,500 to $20,000 with a bond of $100,000.

Both Mallory and Cervantez have been arrested in reference to a theft of approximately $18,000 from the American Eagle Outfitters located at the Hulen Mall.  This offense occurred on Aug. 24, 2014 and was reported on Fort Worth Police Department offense #14-81057.  Homicide Detectives took over this investigation on Dec. 1, 2014.

No word on yet motives. More to come as the story develops.

—  James Russell

Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth top Texas cities in HRC Municipal Equality Index

MEI-2014-map-650x375The Human Rights Campaign released its third annual Municipal Equality Index today (Wednesday, Nov. 12) assessing LGBT equality in 353 cities across the nation, including 22 in Texas, according to a press release from HRC.

The MEI, the only nationwide rating system of LGBT inclusion in municipal law and policy, assesses cities on a one to 100 scale.

The average score for the 22 Texas cities is 28 out of 100 points, far below the national average of 59. Only Austin achieved a perfect 100 score. Dallas came in second with 91 points and Fort Worth third with 83 points.

San Antonio, El Paso and Houston earned scores of 72, 52 and 54 respectively, the only other cities to score more than 50 points.

Other surveyed Texas cities included Amarillo: 14,  Brownsville: 20, Corpus Christi: 16, Killeen: 10, Laredo: 2, Lubbock: 0, McAllen: 0, Pasadena: 10, Waco: 24.

The MEI rates cities based on 47 criteria falling under six broad categories: Non-discrimination laws, relationship recognition, employment policies, including transgender-inclusive insurance coverage, contracting non-discrimination requirements, and other policies relating to equal treatment of LGBT city employees, inclusiveness of city services, fair law enforcement practices and leadership on matters of equality.

Check out the full list here and this week’s edition of the Voice for comments from local leaders.

—  James Russell

BREAKING: Fort Worth Police Chief Jeff Halstead to resign

Halstead.JeffFort Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead is expected to step down tomorrow, Tuesday, Nov. 11, after eight years heading the department, according to NBC 5.

His resignation is not effective immediately. He has not yet named an interim replacement.

Check back here with more information.

—  James Russell

Voting early with and nearly falling on Wendy Davis

I nearly fell on Sen. Wendy Davis at a press event this morning (see: second photo, sixth row). I was taking photos for the gallery below of the Democratic gubernatorial candidate, who was in Fort Worth to cast her vote on the first day of early voting. Of all the reporters, photojournalists and broadcast journalists there, clearly the staff writer at the LGBT publication would be the one to cause a scene.

I’d also like to apologize the Fox 4 News cameraman for bumping him multiple times.

Here are some photos of the rally in front of the Griffin Sub-Courthouse in southeast Fort Worth and from the press conference after she voted. Reporters were not allowed into the polling site.

If you see me at your voting location in the next few weeks, beware. I may fall on you.

Photos and text by James Russell.

—  James Russell

Cowtown Pride: Annual TCGPWA Parade held Saturday in downtown Fort Worth

Tarrant County Gay Pride Week Association staged its annual Pride Parade Saturday in downtown Fort Worth, featuring entries ranging from LGBT bars to LGBT churches, LGBT employee affinity groups from major corporations to gay-straight alliances to Metroplex Atheists. The festival followed on Main Street in front of the FW Convention Center.Here are just a few photos from the parade and festival.

Watch for a second slide show of photos from the TCGPWA Picnic, held Sunday at Trinity Park.

Parade photos by Tammye Nash

—  Tammye Nash

Openly partnered priest is new rector at FW Episcopal Church

Karen-CalafatThe Rev. Karen Calafat is the new rector of St. Luke’s in the Meadow Episcopal Church in Fort Worth. She begins Oct. 5.

Patti Callahan, a senior warden for the church, wrote in a statement that the church has been without a rector for the past nine months. “We are eager for Mother Karen to begin her part-time parish ministry here.”

Calafat has served in a variety of ministerial roles, including as a hospice chaplain, for two parishes in Southern California and a supply priest in the Diocese of Fort Worth for the past six years. She will continue her role as a chaplain with the Visiting Nurses Association.

She lives in Grand Prairie with her daughter. Her partner, Karen, also resides in Grand Prairie.

The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is “a welcoming and affirming group of local Christian communities in and around the Fort Worth area who are united with The Episcopal Church, a province of the worldwide Anglican Communion, and a part of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church.”

—  James Russell

FWPD Chief Halstead gains council support despite friction

Halstead.JeffThe Fort Worth City Council expressed confidence in Police Chief Jeff Halstead following the council’s executive session on Tuesday, Sept. 9, reaffirming that the LGBT ally isn’t going anywhere.

The Black Law Enforcement Officers’ Association recently called for Halstead’s resignation after an independent review detailed incidents of harassment and hostility within the police department. The report suggested some instances of racial bias and race-related harassment. A copy of the report is here.

After the session, Mayor Betsy Price, City Manager David Cooke and Halstead issued the 3-E Action Plan, guaranteeing “equity and equality for everyone.” The plan includes ongoing outreach efforts to minority communities and six annual meetings with both the African-American and Hispanic associations.

Cooke said his office will “be directly involved in monitoring [its] progress.”

Cooke also signaled the council’s support in a statement: “This department will see in our actions that diversity is valued; that any disparate treatment not related to merit will not be tolerated; and that any incidents of a hostile work environment will be handled quickly and appropriately.”

Check out this week’s Dallas Voice for the full story.

 

 

—  James Russell

Tarrant County Pride Week grand marshals announced

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Tarrant County Gay Pride Week Association officials have announced that Sharon Herrera, Allan Gould and Tori Van Fleet-Kujala have been chosen as grand marshals of the 2014 Tarrant County Pride Parade.

They also announced that Todd Cooper (aka Scarlett Rayne), DeeJay Johannasen, David Mack Henderson and the Rev. Ken Ehrke have been nominated for the 2014 Raina Lea Award.

Honorary Grand Marshals are Chris McNoksy and Sven Stricker.

Tarrant County Gay Pride Week 2014 will be Oct. 2-12, beginning with a Pride Kick-Off Show on Oct. 2. The website doesn’t have details on the show posted yet, but keep watching. I am sure the info will be there soon.

The Pride Parade and Street Festival will be Saturday, Oct. 4, from noon-6 p.m., and is once again being held in downtown Fort Worth. The parade begins on Weatherford Street on the north side of downtown, and ends further south on Houston Street. The Pride Street Festival — with live entertainment, vendors and food and beverage booths — will be set up at the intersection of Houston and 9th Streets.

TCGPWA’s popular Pride Picnic at Trinity Park will be held from noon-6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5, and will feature a DJ, live entertainment, group activities, friendly competitions and a free Pride Kids Zone. Community organizations and vendors will have booths set up, and there will be beer, other beverages and food available, too.

Pride Week continues with the 15th annual Q-Cinema Film Festival at Rose Marine Theatre. See details here.

—  Tammye Nash

Rodeo coming back to Cowtown

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Polish up your cowboy boots and get those Wranglers starched: The International Gay Rodeo Association is once again bringing its Finals Rodeo to Fort Worth, Oct. 16-19 in the John Justin Arena, 3401 W. Lancaster Ave. in Fort Worth’s Cultural District. Bud Light is once again the signature sponsor for the rodeo.

The rodeo will include competition in calf roping, team roping, bull riding and other traditional rodeo events, along with other events unique to gay rodeo, like goat dressing and the wild drag race. Both men and women compete in each category, and cowboys and cowgirls have  been competing in rodeos around the U.S. and Canada all year to pile up enough points to earn a spot in the finals. Only the top 20 point-winners in each of the 13 events win a spot at the Finals Rodeo to compete for the titles of WGRF Champion and All-Around Champion.

The four-day Finals Rodeo also includes the culmination of the Mr., Ms. MsTer and Miss IGRA 2015 competition, beginning Thursday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in the Rose Room at S4, 3911 Cedar Springs Road in Dallas, and continuing Friday and Saturday, Oct. 17-18, at the Hilton Arlington, 2401 E. Lamar Blvd. in Arlington. The new titleholders will be crowned Saturday night, with the ceremony folled by a “Hoe Down Party” with live music and dancing. Royalty contests and the hoe-down are free and open to the public.

The four-day event will also include food and merchandise booths and entertainment. Competition in the 13 events will take place Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 18-19. Doors open each day at 9 a.m. Admission is $15 a day or $20 for a weekend pass. Proceeds will benefit IGRA’s two charities for 2014: the National LGBT Cancer Network and the Gay and Lesbian Rodeo Heritage Foundation

 

—  Tammye Nash