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Top Morning Stories May 6, 2011

Extreme fire is seen burning through thick fuel during the Highway 322 fire (Dimmit County) in March 2008.
Photo courtesy the Texas Forest Service
Extreme fire is seen burning through thick fuel during the Highway 322 fire (Dimmit County) in March 2008.

APD Officer Shoots and Kills Armed Suspect

One man was killed by an Austin police officer early this morning in Southeast Austin.  About 1:00, police responded to a "shots fired" call in an apartment complex on Burton Drive, near East Oltorf Street.

"The suspect's a male Hispanic, about—approximately 29 years of age.  And what occurred in this incident is he was trying to gain entry by shooting into—at a apartment door, trying to get into a house where his ex-girlfriend resided," said Police Chief Art Acevedo.

Acevedo said one of the responding officers saw the man with a handgun and opened fire with a shotgun.  That suspect was later pronounced dead at University Medical Center-Brackenridge. 

Three people in the apartment were uninjured.  The officer involved in the shooting has been placed on paid administrative leave.  Police are still investigating the shooting.

New Wildfires Burning in West Texas

Dozens of homes have been evacuated as extreme wildfire conditions over the weekend led to new blazes being sparked Sunday. Trans-Pecos firefighting team spokesman Ed Brown said strong winds, coupled with dry, hot air allowed a fire near Alpine to quickly burn across hundreds of acres, according to the AP:

Southwest winds of 10 to 15 mph and relative humidity readings of 2 percent carried the flames toward Alpine, with juniper trees fueling 50-foot-tall flames. Three C-130 aircraft and smaller air tankers assisted the firefighting effort, but the fire had scorched 3,500 acres by nightfall, when Brown said it was 10 percent contained.

Windy conditions with low humidity are expected to last through much of the week.

UT President To Weigh In On Future Of University

University of Texas at Austin President Bill Powers will deliver what's being called a major speech on the future of the university. It comes on the heels of a controversy over research and higher education  priorities, sparked by the hiring (and quick firing) of higher ed reformer Rick O'Donnell. That speech will be webcast here. It begins at 11 a.m.

Matt Largey is the Projects Editor at KUT. That means doing a little bit of everything: editing reporters, producing podcasts, reporting, training, producing live events and always being on the lookout for things that make his ears perk up. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @mattlargey.
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