cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
Broken Clouds
H 84° L 65°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    Current Conditions
    Broken Clouds. H 84° L 65°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day Created with Sketch.
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 74° L 61°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    Mostly Cloudy. H 74° L 61°

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00


The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00


The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

‘Katrina Girl’ rescued by Air Force para-rescuer to follow him into military service

‘Katrina Girl’ rescued by Air Force para-rescuer to follow him into military service

‘Katrina Girl’ rescued by Air Force para-rescuer to follow him into military service
Photo Credit: U.S. Air Force Photo/Airman 1st Class Veronica Pierce
Lashay Brown, 3, hugs Air Force Staff Sgt. Mike Maroney, as she is relocated to the New Orleans International Airport on Sept. 7, 2005, after Hurricane Katrina flooded her family's home.

‘Katrina Girl’ rescued by Air Force para-rescuer to follow him into military service

When then-Air Force Staff Sgt. Mike Maroney received a tight hug and brilliant smile from a 3-year-old Hurricane Katrina survivor whom he plucked from a rooftop with her family, he expected that he would never see her again. 

Nearly 12 years after the sweltering September 2005 day that he said goodbye to the grateful child, they have forged a bond so strong that the girl, LaShay Brown, plans to follow Maroney’s footsteps into the military. 

LaShay, 14, of Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, also had Maroney escort her to her JROTC ball Saturday night at Bay High School. 

“It would be nobody else that could bring me here, and it would be more special to him,” LaShay told WLOX in Biloxi

>> Read more trending stories

Maroney credits that long-ago hug from LaShay with “rescuing him.” The para-rescuer, who was battling PTSD at the time, was a week into his rescue mission in New Orleans when he was lowered from a helicopter onto a roof where two parents and five children, including LaShay, had been stranded for days. 

Maroney, now a staff sergeant, recalled the rescue in 2015 for the Air Force Times, which was among dozens of publications that helped him find the little girl whose grin had stayed with him for a decade. The girl, whose name he never got, seemed fearless that day, he told the Times. 

As her mother cried on the helicopter, LaShay rubbed her back to comfort her. 

“It’s OK,” Maroney recalled her telling her mother. “We’re safe. Don’t worry.”

When the helicopter dropped off the family at the airport, which was being used as a staging area for evacuees to be moved out of the broken city, LaShay wrapped her arms around Maroney’s neck and hugged him in a moment captured by an Air Force photographer. 

That photo, which ended up on everything from military coins to Burger King place mats, represented for many the strength and resilience of Katrina survivors. It made its way into Mahoney’s heart, and it accompanied him on subsequent tours of duty to Iraq and Afghanistan, where he said it gave him hope during difficult moments. 

“If not for her hug and smile that day, my life would probably be a lot different,” Mahoney told WLOX

As the 10th anniversary of the deadly storm approached in 2015, Mahoney, who had since become a master sergeant in the Air Force Reserve, began trying to find the little girl. Thanks to a viral campaign people called #FindKatrinaGirl, he and LaShay were reunited on an episode of the television show “The Real.” 

Since then, Mahoney has become close to LaShay and her family. His encouragement led her to join the JROTC at school, so it was natural for her to ask him to escort her to the ball. 

“I’m going because I would do anything to repay the hug to LaShay and her family,” Mahoney told People last week. “They mean as much to me as my own.”

His guidance also led to LaShay’s decision to join the military after graduation. Maroney supports that decision, he told People. 

“I am proud of her no matter what she does and will support her in everything she does,” Maroney said. “I think she understands service, and I believe that she will do great things no matter what she chooses.”

Read More

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • The latest on the attack outside Britain's Parliament (all times local): 4:10 a.m. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang says the terrorist attack outside the British Parliament in London was the first subject of discussion when he met with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia on Thursday morning in Canberra. Li says that 'together, we send our condolences to the prime minister of the U.K. and together we condemn terrorism and we stand against all forms of terrorism.' The Chinese leader says that 'there cannot be continued instability in the world,' adding: 'We must cherish peace and stability.' ___ 1:35 a.m. New Zealand's prime minister is condemning the attack outside Britain's Parliament that resulted in five deaths, including the assailant. Prime Minister Bill English told reporters in Rotorua that he has written to British Prime Minister Theresa May to express support for her government and to offer his country's condolences to the victim's families. A knife-wielding man went on the deadly rampage in the heart of Britain's seat of power Wednesday, plowing a car into pedestrians on London's Westminster Bridge before stabbing a police officer to death inside the gates of Parliament. Other officers fatally shot the attacker. In addition to the dead, 40 people have injuries. May has condemned the incident as a 'sick and depraved terrorist attack.' ___ 12:15 a.m. South Korea's Foreign Ministry says five South Koreans in their 50s and 60s were among the 40 people injured in London during the terror attack outside Parliament. The ministry says the five were hurt when they were caught up in a stampede of people trying to escape the attack. It says four of the South Koreans suffered broken bones and other injuries and a woman in her late 60s needed an operation to treat a head injury. ___ 10:30 p.m. British police say five people died in the terror attack outside Parliament. Counter-terrorism chief Mark Rowley said one policeman, three civilians and the attacker died. He said a further 40 people were wounded. The assailant has not been identified. Rowley said police think they know the identity of the man but would not reveal details. He said Islamic extremism is suspected in the attack. He said extra armed police would be on the streets in the coming days to reassure the public, and hundreds of police officers are working on the case. He identified the police officer who died as Keith Palmer, 48. ___ 10:20 p.m. Buckingham Palace officials say Queen Elizabeth II will postpone plans to open the new Scotland Yard headquarters. The palace said Wednesday night that the queen's visit, which had been set for Thursday, will be postponed. The change is due to security concerns raised by the terror attack on Parliament. It is also expected that police will be involved with a major investigation that will occupy many officers. The queen was to have been joined by her husband Prince Philip at the official opening of the new building. ___ 10:15 p.m. Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says the police presence at the Australian Parliament House has been increased in response to the London attacks. 'Australia's heartfelt sympathy and resolute solidarity is with the people of the United Kingdom with whom we stand today as we always have in freedom's cause. Staunch allies in the war against terrorism,' Turnbull told reporters on Thursday. 'The attack on the British Parliament is an attack on parliaments, freedom and democracy everywhere,' he added. ___ 10:05 p.m. The Eiffel Tower is going dark in mourning and solidarity with Britain after an attack around the British Parliament in which four people, including the attacker, were killed. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, whose city has suffered deadly extremist attacks in recent years, announced that the tower is turning off its twinkling lights at midnight (2300 GMT). Three French teenagers on a school trip were among those injured in Wednesday's attack targeting pedestrians on London's Westminster Bridge and a police officer on the nearby Parliament grounds. French President Francois Hollande offered support for Britain and the investigation. ___ 9 p.m. Prime Minister Theresa May has condemned the 'sick and depraved terrorist attack' in London and says the targeting Parliament was no accident. In a late-night statement outside her Downing Street office Wednesday, a defiant May said the nation will not give in to terror and those who targeted the seat of power in Britain. She insisted that 'tomorrow morning Parliament will meet as normal,' and urged the country to move on and behave as normal on Thursday. May says 'we will all move forward together, never giving in to terror and never allowing the voices of hate and evil to drive us apart.' The prime minister confirmed that four people died in the attack and praised the security services who ran toward danger. ___ 8 p.m. A French government plane is set to fly to London Wednesday evening to bring the families of three French students wounded in the attacks at the British Parliament to their loved ones. French President Francois Hollande announced the move in a statement Wednesday night after speaking with British Prime Minister Theresa May. May confirmed to Hollande that three French high school students from France's western Britanny region were wounded in the attacks, the statement said. Hollande offered his condolences to May for those who died in the attacks and expressed France's solidarity with Britain 'in this tragic ordeal.' 'The British and French services are in close contact to conduct the investigation,' Hollande added. London is a common destination for French school trips. ___ 7:55 p.m. Romania's foreign ministry says two Romanians were wounded in a deadly attack in London's Westminster that left four dead. The ministry said the two had been taken to a hospital for treatment. There were no further details on the identity of the two or how seriously they were injured. The ministry said it had been informed by authorities in London. A knife-wielding man went on a deadly rampage near the Parliament, mowing down pedestrians on London's Westminster Bridge before stabbing an armed police officer to death inside the gates of Parliament. Four people were killed, including the attacker. About 20 others were injured. ___ 7:20 p.m. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy condemned the deadly attack in London's Westminster on Wednesday and offered condolences to the British people in a telegram sent to his British counterpart Theresa May. 'An execrable terrorist act like the one that took place today is a reminder that we face complex challenges for the security of our societies,' said Rajoy in a transcript of the telegram distributed by Moncloa, the prime minister's palace. 'We must remain united against these type of threats that affect all of us equally and that know no barriers,' Rajoy wrote, offering Spain's support to the UK. Israel, which that has faced a wave of Palestinian car ramming, stabbing and shooting assaults since 2015, also expressed solidarity with the victims of the London attack. Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said in a statement. 'Israel expresses its deep shock at the terror attack in London today and its solidarity with the victims and with the people and government of Great Britain. Terror is terror wherever it occurs and we will fight it relentlessly.' ___ 6:50 p.m. One British lawmaker was hailed by some as a hero in Wednesday's attack on the British Parliament. Conservative parliamentarian and Foreign Office minister Tobias Ellwood, whose brother was killed in the Bali terror attack in 2002, performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on the police officer who was stabbed and later died. About 10 yards away was the attacker who was shot dead by police after scaling the security wall toward Parliament's grounds. Ellwood, who served in the British military, applied pressure to the police officer's multiple lacerations. Photographs showed Ellwood's bloodied hands and face from the police officer's wounds while the alleged attacker was seen nearby. ___ 6:20 p.m. The White House is condemning the attacks in London involving a car rampage and knife attack. President Donald Trump is said to be monitoring developments. Spokesman Sean Spicer said Wednesday Trump spoke with British Prime Minister Theresa May and said that the White House applauds 'the quick response of British police and first responders' and condemns the attacks. A vehicle mowed down pedestrians on a bridge and the attacker then stabbed a police officer outside the British Parliament. At least four people died, including the attacker and a police officer. Spicer says that the city of London and the British government have the 'full support' of the U.S. as they investigate the attack. The U.S. Homeland Security Department says the security posture in the United States has not changed in the wake of the attack. ___ 6:15 p.m. The Italian interior ministry says the nation's top security and intelligence officials will huddle in Rome on Thursday for 'an evaluation of the terrorist threat' after the attacks in London. The ministry said minister Marco Minniti convened the Committee of Strategic Anti-terrorism Analyses following 'the tragic facts in London,' in which a vehicle mowed down pedestrians on a bridge and the attacker then stabbed a police officer outside the British Parliament. At least four people died, including the attacker and a police officer. Italian security was already on high alert for a European Union summit bringing EU nation leaders to Rome Friday for a meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican, and a ceremony in the Italian capital Saturday. Authorities are bracing for possible violence during several marches Saturday, drawing thousands of both pro-and anti-EU participants. ___ 6:05 p.m. The head of counterterrorism at London's Metropolitan Police, says four people have died in the terror incident in London, including an attacker and a police officer. Mark Rowley says some 20 people have been wounded and Parliament was locked down. A search is underway to make certain no other attackers are in the area — though police believe there was only one attacker. Rowley said the dead policeman was one of the armed officers who guard Parliament. The other victims were on Westminster Bridge. Rowley says 'We are satisfied at this stage that it looks like there was only one attacker. But it would be foolish to be overconfident early on.' ___ 5:50 p.m. French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have both expressed their support and solidarity with Britain after the attacks at the British Parliament in London. 'We are all concerned with terrorism,' Hollande told reporters Wednesday during a visit in Villepinte, outside Paris. 'France, which has been struck so hard lately, knows what the British people are suffering today.' Hollande added that countries 'must bring all the conditions to answer these attacks' and that 'it is clear that it is at the European level, and even beyond that, that we must organize ourselves.' French Interior Minister Matthias Fekl said 'it is a high place of democracy that has been attacked' and that France is 'obviously ready to help.' Merkel said in a statement Wednesday that she learned 'with sorrow' of Wednesday's incident and her thoughts were 'with our British friends and all of the people of London,' in particular those who were injured. While the circumstances of the attack were still unclear, 'I want to say for Germany and its citizens: we stand firmly and resolutely by Great Britain's side in the fight against all forms of terrorism,' she said. ___ 5:45 p.m. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has expressed sympathy to those injured and condolences to the relatives of those who died in the incident at Britain's parliament, and has underlined the need for global cooperation in the fight against terrorism. 'We don't split terrorism into categories; we consider it as absolute evil. At this moment, as always, our hearts are together with the British people, we feel their pain and speak again about the need to confront that evil,' she said. ___ 5:40 p.m. British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson was absent from a 'family photo' of officials attending a conference on the Islamic State group in Washington, D.C. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who was also at the meeting, issued a statement offering his condolences to the victims. 'The American people send their thoughts and prayers to the people of the United Kingdom. We condemn these horrific acts of violence, and whether they were carried out by troubled individuals or by terrorists, the victims know no difference,' he said. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the U.S. was ready to assist in any way. 'The safety and security of U.S. citizens overseas is one of our highest priorities. Our embassy in London is monitoring the situation closely,' he added. ___ 5:30 p.m. Three students on a school trip from Saint-Joseph high school in the Brittany town of Concarneau were among the injured, according to the French foreign ministry. The ministry said it is in contact with British authorities. ___ 5:25 p.m. French Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve says that French high school students are among the wounded in the attack in London. In a tweet Wednesday, Cazeneuve offered support to the British as well as to 'the French students wounded, their families and their schoolmates.' London is a common destination for French school trips. ___ 5:15 p.m. British port officials say they pulled a woman from the Thames River following the incident on Westminster Bridge. The Port of London Authority says a female member of the public was recovered from the river, injured but alive. The authority says it has closed the river between Vauxhall Bridge and Embankment while a major security operation is under way after a suspected terror attack at the Houses of Parliament in London. ___ 5:10 p.m. Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May will chair a meeting of the government emergency committee to discuss the response to the terror incident in London. The emergency committee known as Cobra coordinates the high-level response to serious incidents. It brings together government ministers with senior officials of the emergency services and security and intelligence agencies. Such meetings are held after serious incidents such at the July 7, 2005, attack on London transport services. The Wednesday meeting is held in the briefing room of the Cabinet Office on Whitehall. ___ 5 p.m. The London Ambulance Service says it has treated at least 10 injured people on Westminster Bridge after a vehicle hit pedestrians. It says the first ambulance arrived within six minutes of the first call at 2:40 p.m. (1440GMT). Ambulances, an air ambulance and a Hazardous Area Response Team were all sent to the scene. One woman has been confirmed dead, and a body was seen lying in the yard of Parliament, where a knifeman stabbed a police officer and was shot by police. People began leaving the Houses of Parliament about two hours after the incident. ___ 4:50 p.m. A senior police commander says the attack at London's Parliament has been declared a terrorist incident and 'a full counterterrorism investigation is underway.' Commander B.J. Harrington says 'a number' of people have been injured, including police officers. He says additional police officers, armed and unarmed, will be deployed across London during the evening rush hour as part of efforts to keep people safe. ___ 4:35 p.m. The Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh suspended its debate on a second independence referendum after the incident outside the British Parliament in London. Scottish lawmakers had been planning to vote after two days of debate on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's call for another referendum on leaving the United Kingdom. The debate was suspended after some members said it should be halted out of respect after a policeman was stabbed and his attacker shot in London. Sturgeon tweeted that her thoughts were with everyone in Westminster 'caught up in this dreadful incident.' ___ 4:30 p.m. A doctor says a woman has died and about a dozen people are hurt, some with 'catastrophic' injuries, after a vehicle apparently hit pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, near Parliament. Colleen Anderson of St Thomas' Hospital says a female pedestrian has died. Anderson said: 'There were people across the bridge. There were some with minor injuries, some catastrophic. Some had injuries they could walk away from or who have life-changing injuries.' She said there might be a dozen injured in all. ___ 4:20 p.m. Poland's former foreign minister, Radek Sikorski, says he was in a taxi leaving Westminster and was checking his email when he heard something like a car crash, 'something like a car hitting metal sheet.' 'I look up and I see that a person is lying on the pavement. I started my camera and I saw more people lying on the street and on the pavement,' Sikorski said on Poland's TVN24. 'People started running up to them. I saw one person who gave no sign of life, another man was bleeding from his head. In all, I saw five people who were at least seriously injured,' he said. 'The taxi driver immediately called the emergency number. I heard ambulances within two or three minutes, so the rescue action was really very quick. There is a hospital near there.' 'It all happened so fast that there was no time to get scared,' said Sikorski who posted his video on Twitter. ___ 4:05 p.m. The U.S. State Department says it is closely monitoring the incident outside London's Parliament and urged Americans in London to avoid the area. Spokesman Mark Toner said Wednesday: 'We stand ready to assist in any way the U.K. authorities would find helpful.' He added that the U.S. Embassy in London is closely following the news and stands ready to help any affected Americans. He said: 'Our hearts go out to those affected.' ___ 3:50 p.m. Witness Rick Longley told the Press Association that he saw a man stab a policeman outside Britain's Parliament. 'We were just walking up to the station and there was a loud bang and a guy, someone, crashed a car and took some pedestrians out,' he said. 'They were just laying there and then the whole crowd just surged around the corner by the gates just opposite Big Ben. 'A guy came past my right shoulder with a big knife and just started plunging it into the policeman. 'I have never seen anything like that. I just can't believe what I just saw.' Lawmaker Adam Holloway told the AP he saw people running and immediately ran into his offices in Parliament to be with his staff. 'A lot of us are locked in with our staff at the moment,' he said. ___ 3:50 p.m. The White House says U.S. President Donald Trump has been briefed on a gun and knife incident at Britain's Parliament in London. Trump himself said during a brief appearance Wednesday before reporters at the White House that he was just getting the news. He called it 'big news.' Trump's spokesman, Sean Spicer, says the U.S. will continue to monitor the situation and update the president. Britain's Parliament was on lockdown after — according to officials — an assailant stabbed an officer then was shot by police. London Police also said officers were called to an incident on nearby Westminster Bridge ___ 3:40 p.m. British lawmaker Grant Shapps said on Twitter that he was walking through the cloisters of the House of Commons to vote when he heard four gunshots. Police told lawmakers to get down on the ground and crawl to cover. 'Police response instant. Heard commotion, looked round. Police weapons drawn, 4 shots, police ordered us to hit ground & get back, get back,' he said. ___ 3:40 p.m. The former Polish foreign minister Radek Sikorski posted a video on Twitter that seems to show people lying injured in the road on Westminster Bridge. Sikorski, a senior fellow at the Harvard Centre for European Studies, says he saw at least five people lying on the ground after being 'mown down' by a car. Sikorski told the BBC he 'heard what I thought what I thought was just a collision and then I looked through the window of the taxi and someone down, obviously in great distress. 'Then I saw a second person down, and I started filming, then I saw three more people down, one of them bleeding profusely.' ___ 3:35 p.m. London police say they are treating a gun and knife incident at Britain's Parliament 'as a terrorist incident until we know otherwise.' The Metropolitan Police says in a statement that the incident is ongoing. It is urging people to stay away from the area. Officials say a man with a knife attacked a police officer at Parliament and was shot by officers. There are also reports of a vehicle hitting pedestrians on nearby Westminster Bridge. ___ 3:25 p.m. A European security official says there was increased chatter on jihadi networks Tuesday following the UK's adoption of an electronics ban aboard flights from certain mostly Muslim countries. He said, however, there was no information that the incident was terror-related. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak about ongoing security operations. —By Paisley Dodds. ___ 3:15 p.m. The leader of Britain's House of Commons says a man attacked a police officer at Parliament and has been shot by police. David Lidington says the Parliament complex is in lockdown. He says there are reports of further violent incidents neaby, and police say they have been called to a firearms incident on nearby Westminster Bridge. Witnesses said a vehicle struck several people on the bridge, and photos showed a car plowed into railings. ___ 3:05 p.m. The leader of Britain's House of Commons says a man has been shot by police at Parliament. David Lidington also said there were 'reports of further violent incidents in the vicinity.' London's police said officers had been called to a firearms incident on Westminster Bridge, near the parliament. A session of Parliament was suspended after the incident. Britain's MI5 says it is too early to say if the incident is terror-related. ___ 2:55 p.m. A session of Britain's House of Commons has been suspended as witnesses reported hearing sounds like gunfire nearby. The Commons' speaker suspended the session as police responded to an incident. Journalists at the Parliament building said they were told to stay in their offices. The Press Association news agency reported that two people were seen lying within the grounds of Parliament. Police had no immediate confirmation.
  • Why did a Texas teacher accused of having an improper relationship with a student smile in her mugshot? Her lawyer has offered an explanation. According to Dallas-Fort Worth's KXAS, Jason Nassour, attorney for Lockhart High School anatomy teacher Sarah Fowlkes, said she was grinning because she's innocent. >> PREVIOUS STORY: Teacher accused of improper relationship with student smiles in mugshot  'This isn't a guilty person sitting there like they just got caught,' Nassour told KXAS. 'When everything's fleshed out, it won't be as it appears.' Lockhart police began investigating the incident March 10 after a school administrator reported that 'an educator at the school may be having an inappropriate relationship with a currently enrolled student,' according to the arrest affidavit. A 17-year-old student claimed that Fowlkes, 27, touched his genitals and that he 'made contact with the defendant's breasts,' the affidavit said. >> See the affidavit here Fowlkes was arrested on a charge of 'improper relationship between educator and student,' police said. The school district also suspended Fowlkes, The Austin American-Statesman reported. 'Lockhart parents entrust their children to us every day, and it is something we do not take lightly,' Lockhart Superintendent Susan Bohn said in a statement, the American-Statesman reported. 'The district does not and will not tolerate any improper communication or contact between a teacher and child.' Bohn also alerted parents about the arrest and suspension in an email, the American-Statesman reported. >> On Statesman.com: Lockhart High teacher accused of improper relationship with student Nassour told KXAS that Fowlkes 'was arrested on the statement of a 17-year-old kid with no corroborating evidence.' >> Read more trending news According to the American-Statesman, Fowlkes, who taught anatomy and physiology and environmental systems at Lockhart High, previously taught science and social studies at Plum Creek Elementary School. The Houston Chronicle, citing Fowlkes' social media accounts, reported that she has been married since 2013.
  • Two shoppers claimed they received fake currency when they requested cash back from a Florida Walmart, a police report said.  On March 18, deputies from the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office were dispatched to the Walmart on 103rd Street, where two Jacksonville residents – Taijahn Robinson and Tometta Lattella – said they received fake bills as cash back during purchases made on March 17.  Walmart said Wednesday it is investigating to confirm the claims. The victims told JSO that they didn't know the bills were fake until the day after they shopped at Walmart.  >> Read more trending news “We take these situations seriously and are currently working both internally and with local law enforcement to confirm the claims,' Walmart said in a statement.  Robinson and Lattella do not know each other, JSO said in the report. Lattella's son obtained $100 as cash back from a purchase made at 10:30 p.m., police said. The bill obtained was smaller than a typical $100 bill, JSO said, and didn't have proper security markings.  Earlier, about 9 p.m., Robinson said she obtained $100 as cash back from the same register. Robinson received three fake $20 bills with the same serial number, JSO said.  The fake money was confiscated by authorities.  Walmart didn't reimburse the shoppers. The manager on duty told Robinson and Lattella that they would need to file a formal complaint with Walmart's corporate office. 
  • A 27-year-old science teacher at a Texas high school has been arrested after being accused of having an improper relationship with a student, the Lockhart school district announced Monday. >> UPDATE: Teacher accused of improper relationship smiled because she is innocent, lawyer says Lockhart High School teacher Sarah Fowlkes, a school district employee since October 2014, also was suspended from her job. The district said it was alerting the State Board for Educator Certification about the case. The district said it first received a report about the relationship on March 10, before the start of spring break, and alerted Lockhart police and Child Protective Services. Police said the student was 17 years old. >> Read more trending news “Lockhart parents entrust their children to us every day, and it is something we do not take lightly,” Superintendent Susan Bohn said in a statement. “The district does not and will not tolerate any improper communication or contact between a teacher and child.” Bohn emailed Lockhart High parents on Monday to notify them of the arrest and Fowlkes’ suspension. The superintendent also asked parents to speak with their children about what happened. “If any student or parent has information about this situation, please contact the Lockhart Police Department at 512-398-4401,” Bohn wrote. Counselors also would be available at the high school for support, she said. Fowlkes, who grew up in Dripping Springs, taught anatomy and physiology and environmental systems, according to a cached webpage that has since been deleted from the district’s website. According to the webpage, Fowlkes earned a Bachelor of Science in biology from St. Edwards University and went through the UTeach program at the University of Texas before earning an alternative teaching certification. She previously was a third- and fifth-grade science and social studies teacher at Plum Creek Elementary in the district.
  • A Seminole County Clerk of Courts employee who was placed on administrative leave earlier this week has resigned following social media comments related to State Attorney Aramis Ayala.    Stan McCullars had been on paid administrative leave following the post, “Maybe SHE should get the death penalty,” over Ayala's stance on the death penalty. The post also called for Ayala to be tarred and feathered over her decision not to seek the death penalty in any case her office prosecutes, including the case against Loyd.    Ayala’s office filed a formal complaint against McCullars after the posts came to light.    Seminole County Clerk and Comptroller Grant Maloy called for McCullars resignation Wednesday and he agreed to step down. McCullars worked as a finance assistant in the office for about one year.    “Let me emphasize again that the Clerk of the Court and Comptroller, our management team and employees do not tolerate or condone discriminatory behavior toward our customers, coworkers or the public, and we stand by our office’s continuing commitment to diversity and inclusion,” Maloy said