Athens Review, Athens, Texas

Local News

April 3, 2013

KC makes arrest

Officer: No link to murders of prosecutors ‘at this time’

Athens — KAUFMAN — Kaufman County Sheriff's spokesperson Lt. Justin Lewis confirmed Wednesday the arrest of Nick Morale, 56, of Terrell on April 2 by the Texas Rangers on one charge of terroristic threat. Morale is being held in the Kaufman County Jail on $1,000,000 bond.

According to Lewis, during the course of the investigation into the murder of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, a threat was made against the safety of a Kaufman County official. The threat was investigated, leading to the arrest of Morale.

The complaint against Morale states the Crimestoppers tip line received a call on April 1 of a threatening nature. The caller stated there would be another victim, whose name was redacted in a criminal complaint against Morale released by the sheriff's office. The call details were obtained by the Eric W. Wilson, Texas Department of Public Safety.  The complaint stated the phone belonged to Nick Morale. The complaint stated Morale had blocked the caller ID feature in an effort to conceal his identity and remain anonymous.

Lewis said, “At this time, there is nothing to link Mr. Morale to the investigation of the murders of Mike and Cynthia McLelland or Mark Haase. The investigation into the death of the McLellands and Haase is ongoing.”

McLelland and his wife were killed early Saturday in their home outside of Forney. The murders occurred just two months after Haase, a Kaufman County assistant district attorney, was gunned down in a parking lot near the Kaufman County Courthouse.

Meanwhile, a memorial service for the McLellands is scheduled for today at 1 p.m. at Sunnyvale First Baptist Church located at 3018 N. Beltline Road in Sunnyvale. The couple's funeral will be held on Friday at 10 a.m. at First Baptist Church of Wortham. According to the Associated Press, burial will follow in Wortham, Mr. McLelland's hometown. Mrs. McLelland will be cremated and her ashes buried in the casket with her husband.

The Kaufman County Courthouse and other county offices will be closed on Thursday at 11 a.m. The offices will remain closed the remainder of the day to honor the McLellands. Offices will reopen on Friday.

KCSO released a statement informing the media that it would be updated at the Kaufman County Law Enforcement Center with all future information on the murders. The release read in part, “To alleviate the pressures put on the businesses on the square, the citizens trying to enter into the courthouse to conduct daily business, other victims of crime coming into the courthouse who are frightened by the extensive media presence, as well as the need for quick entry and exit by emergency personnel into the courthouse area in the event of a medical or fire emergency, all information will be released from the Law Enforcement Center.

Kaufman County Crimestoppers is currently offering a reward of $100,00 for information leading to the arrest of the individual who is responsible for the Haase murder. A reward for information about the McLelland murders has not been announced yet. KCSO asks anyone with information on the murders to contact Kaufman County Crimestoppers' tip line at 877-847-7522 or online at KaufmanCountyCrimestoppers.org

1
Text Only
Local News
  • ADR logo.tif Third elementary school to replace Athens Intermediate School

    The Athens Independent School District school board approved campus realignment Monday that will go into effect for the 2015-16 school year.
    While full details of the plan are still being discussed, the district unanimously approved adding a third elementary school, while doing away with the intermediate level.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0128.JPG Laying Splash Pad bricks

    Workmen from Rosenberg’s Outdoor Designs of Athens are shown installing bricks purchased by individuals, businesses and other organizations at the Kiwanis Park Splash Pad.  Shown, left to right, are: Nick Rosenberg, owner of the company; Jonathan Perez and Gutierrez Concepcion.
     

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Burton’s severance approved

    The Athens City Council on Monday narrowly approved a budget amendment from reserves, to fund a severance package for City Administrator Pam Burton who is retiring at the end of 2014.
    Mayor Jerry Don Vaught and council members Monte Montgomery and Tres Winn entered yes votes, while Joe Whatley and Charles Elliott opposed the adjustment.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Sanders readies proposed budget

    Henderson County Judge Richard Sanders has his proposed budget ready for submission, with the numbers reflecting revenues slightly above last year.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Academically-weighted courses discussed at CRISD meeting

    A concern about how elective courses in the Cross Roads Independent School District are academically-weighted was discussed at Monday night's school board meeting to determine a student's class rank.
    The board of trustees decided to let the issue extend to a further meeting to work on rewording the change in the student handbook.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0127.JPG McDonald’s coming to Mabank

    The corner of North First Street and North Third Street in Mabank is about to look a lot different as a construction crew broke ground Monday.
    A formal ceremonial groundbreaking will be held within the next week to welcome McDonald's to the location just off of Highway 175.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Funeral held for 15-year-old drowned Eustace student

    Funeral services were held on Sunday for a 15-year-old Eustace student who drowned Thursday evening after diving into Cedar Creek Lake.
    The Henderson County Sheriff’s Office investigated the drowning. According to reports, a medical emergency call came to 9-1-1 shortly after 5 p.m. from Timber Bay in the Payne Springs area.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-29 PSCA open house.jpg PSCA seeks new student enrollment

    “Striving to make a difference in each child for eternity,” reads the motto of one local private school seeking new enrollment.
    Payne Springs Christian Academy is looking to enroll new students for the 2014-2015 school year.
    “We are in need of some kids this year,” said Amanda Beets, a mother of one of the school's current students.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADR logo.tif Lightfoot-Miller Cemetery to dedicate historical marker

    The Texas Historical Commission, Henderson County Historical Commission and descendants of those who are buried in the Lightfoot-Miller Cemetery invite the public to the dedication of a historical marker at the property.
    The observance is set for 10 a.m. on Aug. 2.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-29 HCHS.jpg ‘Party for the Paws’ event great success

    The Henderson County Humane Society in Athens as well as  Beckham are continuing to celebrate results of the Party For The Paws fundraiser.  Beckham is a dog that was recently adopted from the HCHS.
    HCHS Treasurer Ellen Barton commends those who were involved in the event’s planning and execution. 

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo