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(UPDATE) 4 shot, 1 dead in residence shooting

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Jared HopeCOURTESY PHOTO Jared William Hope

 2 suspects on the run, 1 in custody

From Staff Reports

LIVINGSTON — One man is dead after a shooting that took place at a residence on the 200 block of Maple Lane in Livingston Wednesday evening.

Ashton Allen Smith, 22, was found deceased after he received multiple gunshot wounds. Three other people were shot at the residence as well.

At approximately 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, the Livingston Police Department responded to the residence, located at 201 Maple Lane, after receiving two 911 calls in regard to gunshots fired inside the residence and several occupants of the residence had been struck. The officers arrived on scene and found multiple gunshot victims and one white male laying on the floor of the residence.

Shooting 2JASON CHLAPEK I PCE Livingston Police Department, Polk County Sheriff’s Office and Texas Rangers investigate a shooting that took place at a residence on the 200 block of Maple Lane Wednesday night in Livingston. Four people were shot and one died from gunshot wounds.

After securing the scene, EMS was summoned to the scene to treat the wounded, which included a 3-year-old female. During the investigation, witnesses were able to positively identify two of the alleged three suspects who all fled the scene after making forcible entry into the residence.

The suspects have been identified as Cole Byron Tucker, 20, and Jared William Hope, 22, both from Livingston. The third suspect has not yet been identified.

According to witnesses, Tucker began firing his weapon upon making forcible entry into the residence and a male inside returned fire with his weapon. The investigation continued and the male inside the residence was later identified as Smith, who was deceased at the scene from multiple gunshot wounds.

The other occupants inside the residence were identified as Jimmy Douglas, Vickie Douglas and Erin Pasket. All the victims except for Jimmy Douglas sustained gunshot wounds and are being treated for their injuries, including the child.

The LPD is continuing with the investigation and arrest warrants have been issued for Tucker and Hope for the felony offense of Murder. The LPD has received several tips in regard to the locations of the alleged suspects and Tucker was arrested in Houston.

Tucker went to Memorial Hermann in downtown Houston to be treated for gunshot wounds. He was arrested at 12:20 a.m. Thursday by an LPD detective and a Texas Ranger.

Hope was taken into custody by the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office at approximately 11:30 a.m. Thursday. The investigation is continuing by the LPD and are being assisted by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the Texas Rangers.

Anyone with information on this crime and the whereabouts of Jared William Hope, you are asked to contact Detective Leon Middleton at the Livingston Police Department 936-327-3117 or Crime Stoppers at 936-327-STOP (7867). Callers will remain anonymous and may be eligible to receive a cash reward of up to $1,000 if the information provided leads to an arrest or grand jury indictment of a felony offender.

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Alleged shooting in Livingston

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4987COURTESY PHOTO Livingston Police and the Polk County Sheriff's Department responding to a residence in Livingston on Wednesday January 6, 2021.

PCE Staff

The Polk County Enterprise has received reports of multiple shooting victims in Livingston Wednesday night.

Sources have told the Enterprise that four people have been shot and one is dead after an alleged incident some time after 6 p.m.

Livingston Police and the Polk County Sheriff's Department responded to a residence off Liberty Avenue near Maple Lane Wednesday.

The condition of the other three victims, as well as the suspect, are unknown at this time. Stay connected to www.easttexasnews.com for breaking information.

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Rotary Club Makes annual Christmas deliveries

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                               JASON CHLAPEK I PCE Rotary Club of Livingston delivered gifts and meals to 10 families last Thursday as part of the club’s Empty Stocking program.

By Jason Chlapek

As long as Janet Wiggins can remember, the Empty Stocking program has been a Rotary Club of Livingston tradition.

“I’ve been in Rotary since 1992 and we’ve had it since then,” she said. “We go through the Empty Stocking program, which is headed up by Angela Figgs, and she gives us the names of needy families.”

While Wiggins has been with Rotary since 1992, she’s not certain when the club began its participation in the Empty Stocking program. Rotarians made their annual deliveries of gifts and food to 10 families last Thursday.

“I love seeing the faces of the children when the gifts are delivered,” Wiggins said. “It’s such a reward to be able to help someone who may be in need. It’s always been a reward for me.”

Beginning in October, Rotary Club of Livingston starts collecting funds for the Empty Stocking program. Two weeks prior to delivery day, Rotarians split into groups and buy gifts for the children in the family of which their group was assigned.

On delivery day, club members gather at Brookshire Bros. to pick up a box of food for their assigned family. In year’s past, 20 families were selected by Rotary Club of Livingston.

But with Covid-19, only 10 families were chosen. The club also has seen a decline in attendance and service project participation since the pandemic, which meant less volunteers to deliver to families.

Wiggins also is the director of the Polk County Chamber of Commerce, which has the 12 Days of Christmas program. With that program, Wiggins and her group go to the houses of 12 families and deliver gifts to them for 12 days.

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Chamber hosts Christmas party for final 2020 function

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                               JASON CHLAPEK I PCE The Polk County Chamber of Commerce hosted a Christmas party last Friday for its final quarterly meeting of 2020.

By Jason Chlapek

The Polk County Chamber of Commerce conducted one more quarterly get together last week.

The Chamber hosted a Christmas party complete with hot cocoa, cookies and coffee. It was the final quarterly meeting of 2020.

“We normally have quarterly membership luncheons and (Friday) was the Christmas party,” Chamber director Janet Wiggins said. “We had cookies, hot chocolate and coffee. This was a time to relax and enjoy hot cocoa and cookies. This is the second year that I’ve put this on.”

Wiggins has been the Chamber director since September 2018. She enjoys hosting quarterly meetings for her members.

“It’s great to see your members and share with them what’s going to happen for the upcoming year,” Wiggins said. “It’s fun to visit and your members are important.”

Wiggins said the quarterly meetings in 2021 will take place in March, June, September and December. She’ll release the dates in the near future.

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Big Sandy receives ‘good, clean’ audit

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                               JASON CHLAPEK I PCE From left, Big Sandy ISD board members Maynard Williams and Lyndon Alec review an agenda item during last Monday’s monthly school board meeting.

By Jason Chlapek

DALLARDSVILLE – Big Sandy ISD went over its audit during last Monday’s monthly school board meeting.

According to Superintendent Eric Carpenter, the district received a “good, clean audit.” He gave credit where he believed credit was due.

“The board has been good stewards of their money,” Carpenter said. “Our staff as a whole also has been good stewards of their money.”

Axley & Rode of Livingston performed Big Sandy’s audit. Carpenter said his district has worked with the firm for four years now.

Big Sandy ISD nurse Amanda Foster also gave an update on Covid-19. Carpenter is pleased with the way his district has combated the virus.

“Our saving grace is wearing masks,” he said. “Our staff and students have done a great job of wearing masks.”

During the first semester, Big Sandy ISD did not have to shut down because of Covid. Carpenter credits that to staff and students “doing what they have to do to stay safe.”

The board also approved for Carpenter to submit a waiver to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to waive the student growth requirement in the Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System (T-TESS) and the student growth requirement in Texas Principal Evaluation and Support System (T-PESS). On Dec. 10, the Commissioner of Education announced that TEA would waive the A-F Accountability system for this year.

Big Sandy ISD meets again on 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 25.

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