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The Brief: A Call for Charges After Men Confused for Terrorists

A February incident aboard a bus in Amarillo where two men were suspected by another passenger of discussing a bomb has a Sikh advocacy group calling for criminal charges against those who restrained the men.

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The Big Conversation

A February incident aboard a bus in Amarillo where an Indian asylum seeker and a Pakistani man were suspected by another passenger of discussing a bomb has a Sikh advocacy group calling for criminal charges against those who restrained the men.

A staff attorney for The Sikh Coalition told the Tribune's Johnathan Silver that the asylum speaker does not speak English and had no idea what was happening during most of the ordeal.

The attorney added that Islamophobia, discrimination based on skin color and a misunderstanding of Sikhs and turbans perpetuated the incident. Sikhs are often mistaken for Muslims, inviting scrutiny and misconceptions such as connections to terrorism, she said.

Potter County Sheriff Brian Thomas told the Tribune that everything was done by the book. "It doesn't matter who you are," Thomas said. "If you call into the sheriff's office and have someone talking about a bomb, we're going to investigate that information."

County Attorney Scott Brumley added that pursuing charges against the passengers simply to punish them for any beliefs they may hold is unjust, but if those beliefs led to knowingly making a false report, that is criminal.

Trib Must Reads

Some Voters to Weigh in Twice This Month on Empty House Seats, by Jordan Rudner — Both this Saturday and then two weeks later, voters in San Antonio and Houston will weigh in on the future of their representation in the Texas House.

Budget Cuts Hit Early Childhood Intervention Program, by Edgar Walters — Nonprofit providers of pediatric therapy services say sweeping budget cuts ordered by state lawmakers will jeopardize the Early Childhood Intervention program in particular.

Paxton Wants Fantasy Sports Lawsuit Moved, by Madlin Mekelburg and Jordan Rudner — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton wants a lawsuit filed against his office by fantasy sports site DraftKings moved to Travis County.

New A&M Campus to Welcome Students "Not Admitted" Into A&M, by Matthew Watkins — The Texas A&M University System on Monday announced plans to renovate an old satellite campus to develop new research opportunities and teach as many as 10,000 new students who were "not admitted" into the university.

Ted Cruz Argues He's "In For the Distance" as Indiana Primary Nears, by Patrick Svitek — Ted Cruz is arguing he still has a path to Republican presidential nomination, even if he loses the primary here Tuesday as expected.

Texas, Feds Agree to Renew Short-Term Medicaid Funds, by Edgar Walters — The Obama administration has agreed to temporarily keep some federal money flowing into Texas to help hospitals treat uninsured patients, despite the state's refusal to offer health coverage to low-income adults.

The Day Ahead

•    The Indiana party primaries happen today, with the GOP presidential contest shaping up to be a possible make-or-break moment for the White House aspirations of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

•    Early voting ends ahead of Saturday's House District special elections to fill unexpired terms for a pair of seats in San Antonio and Houston.

•    The House committees on Public Education and Economic & Small Business Development hold a 10 a.m. joint interim hearing in the Capitol extension to look at ways to better coordinate efforts among colleges, school districts and employers to prepare students for life after high school. [E1.030]


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Bumpy STAAR tests ‘unacceptable’ but will still be used to grade schools, Texas education chief says, The Dallas Morning News

All five EPISD defendants plead not guilty, El Paso Times

Texas Sitting on Millions Owed to Crime Victims, KXAN-TV

Pregnant women need to avoid drinking water with certain ag chemicals, researchers say, San Antonio Express-News

Dallas jury orders Choctaw Nation to pay $11 million in 2013 casino bus crash, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Oil bust casts shadow on OTC, Houston Chronicle

Japanese machinery firm moves Americas hub to Houston, The Associated Press

Texas Grants Child Care License to Migrant Detention Center, The New York Times

Former Houston Mayor Parker returns to Rice University as professor, Houston Chronicle

Wendy Davis becomes a grandmother, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Quote to Note

“Lord, you are the greatest political consultant. And if they ignore your will, they cannot … succeed.”

— Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, leading a prayer for elected officials during Monday's Texas National Day of Prayer breakfast, as reported by the San Antonio Express-News

News From Home

•    This week, we’re in the home stretch of our spring member drive. Please help us with our goal of enrolling 200 new members! Join today as a member, or chip in a one-time donation to help fund our nonprofit newsroom.

•    On the latest episode of Reveal Radio, the Tribune's Neena Satija and Matthew Watkins explain how an attempt to boost diversity in Texas colleges could, paradoxically, end affirmative action. This is part of our Price of Admission series.

Trib Events for the Calendar

•    Live Members-Only TribCast on May 4 at The Townsend in Austin

•    A Conversation on Mental Health Matters on May 10 at KLRU Studio 6A in Austin

•    A Conversation with Mike Morath, Texas Education Commissioner, on May 17 at The Austin Club

•    The Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 23-25 at the University of Texas at Austin

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