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Top Morning Stories October 12, 2011

Round_Rock.JPG
Photo by Andy Uhler for KUT News.
Some Round Rock residents were shocked Tuesday to learn that one of their neighbors was charged in a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S.

Central Texas Man Charged in Terror Plot

A Round Rock man is being held without bail in New York after being charged with plotting to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Manssor Arbabsiar, originally from Iran but now a naturalized American citizen, was one of two primary individuals involved in the terrorist plot. Arbabsiar was arrested at JFK Airport on Sept. 29. Holder said elements of Iran’s government directed the assassination plot.

KUT visited Arbabsiar's Round Rock neighborhood yesterday where some residents were shocked at the news. You can read that story here.

The Associated Press reports Arbabsiar was well-known in used car business circles in Corpus Christi:

   Manssor Arbabsiar was just known as "Jack" to his friend and one-time business partner David Tomscha when they owned a used car lot together in Corpus Christi.      Tomscha says Arbabsiar was likable but a bit lazy. He says their partnership lasted about six months in the 1990s because Arbabsiar stopped making his share of the payments. But they knew each other for years.      Tomscha said Tuesday that Arbabsiar was no mastermind and wasn't political. He had owned several used car lots around the city.  

FEMA Rolling Out Temporary Housing Units For Wildfire Survivors

FEMA said in a press release several dozen manufactured homes have been brought to Texas. These are to provide families temporary housing as they rebuild or repair their homes. FEMA says some of these housing units likely will go to Bastrop County residents affected by the Bastrop County Complex fire. The units come with either two or three bedrooms, a bathroom, furniture, a stove and a refrigerator.

GOP Candidates Debate on the Economy

The Republican candidates for president debated at Dartmouth College last night. The debate focused on the U.S. economy. Governor Rick Perry continued to tout his job creation record in Texas. He also credited the Enterprise and Emerging Technology Funds for luring business and investments to Texas.

But as KUT's political reporter Ben Philpott reports, Governor Perry did not make the big splash he needed to make last night. You can read more of Philpott's report of last night's debate here.

Amber Alert Canceled

Police in Alvin, Texas, south of Houston, have canceled an Amber Alert for a six year-old boy. Police say Gerardo Olvera Junior was found safe in nearby League City last night. One man was arrested in the kidnapping.