Jay Root Reporter

Jay Root is a native of Liberty. He never knew any reporters growing up, and he has never taken a journalism class in his life. But somehow he got hooked on the news business. It all started when Root walked into the offices of The Daily Texan, his college newspaper, during his last year at the University of Texas in 1987. He couldn't resist the draw: it was the biggest collection of misfits ever assembled. After graduating, he took a job at a Houston chemical company and soon realized it wasn't for him. Root applied for an unpaid internship at the Houston Post in 1990, and it turned into a full-time job that same year. He has been a reporter ever since. Root has covered natural disasters, live music and Texas politics — not necessarily in that order. He was Austin bureau chief of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for a dozen years, most of them good. He also covered politics and the Legislature for The Associated Press before joining the staff of the Tribune.Root is the author of “Oops! A Diary From The 2012 Campaign Trail,” an insider’s account of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s dramatic collapse in the 2012 presidential race. The book was released in September, 2012.

Recent Contributions

Indicted Border Patrol Agent's Brother Strikes Deal

Suspects (l-r) Aaron Rodriguez Medellin, Eduardo Luna Rodriguez and Joel Luna Rodriguez stand before District 107 Judge Benjamin Euresti on Thursday for their arraignment on murder charges.
Suspects (l-r) Aaron Rodriguez Medellin, Eduardo Luna Rodriguez and Joel Luna Rodriguez stand before District 107 Judge Benjamin Euresti on Thursday for their arraignment on murder charges.

The brother of a U.S. Border Patrol agent charged with capital murder in a gruesome beheading that authorities say was a Mexican cartel hit struck a surprise deal Thursday to cooperate with prosecutors in their case against his siblings and other defendants.

Headless Body Leads to Arrest of Border Patrol Agent

Border Patrol agent Joel Luna Rodriguez confers with his attorney Carlos A. Gardcia after his arraignment in Brownsville by District 107 Judge Benjamin Euresti on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016
Border Patrol agent Joel Luna Rodriguez confers with his attorney Carlos A. Gardcia after his arraignment in Brownsville by District 107 Judge Benjamin Euresti on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016

When Franky Palacios Paz was found naked and decapitated floating off South Padre Island, the local sheriff thought the murder would lead investigators back to Mexican drug cartel violence. He didn't expect a U.S. Border Patrol agent to be among those arrested.

A Border Rancher Explains the Art of Survival

Ruperto Escobar on his South Texas ranch along the Rio Grande, the international boundary between the United States and Mexico, in April 2016. For generations, smugglers have used his family's ranch to move people and product across the border, and Escobar doesn't see that changing anytime soon.
Ruperto Escobar on his South Texas ranch along the Rio Grande, the international boundary between the United States and Mexico, in April 2016. For generations, smugglers have used his family's ranch to move people and product across the border, and Escobar doesn't see that changing anytime soon.

For more than two centuries, the Escobar family has ranched along the Rio Grande. For almost as long, smugglers have moved people and product across their property. 

Border Patrol Agent Indicted in Sweeping Drug Probe

After chasing away the smugglers using rafts to bring drugs across the river, Border Patrol and Texas DPS agents inspect several large packages of marijuana abandoned near the Rio Grande shoreline near Roma, Texas, on March 8, 2016. The packages were later found to weigh 313 pounds, making them worth an estimated $240,000.
After chasing away the smugglers using rafts to bring drugs across the river, Border Patrol and Texas DPS agents inspect several large packages of marijuana abandoned near the Rio Grande shoreline near Roma, Texas, on March 8, 2016. The packages were later found to weigh 313 pounds, making them worth an estimated $240,000.

A U.S. Border Patrol agent has been indicted in a sweeping corruption probe into a drug ring that allegedly recruited law enforcement officials to steal dope from traffickers.