By Chris Lane
By Jeff Balke
By Aaron Reiss
By Angelica Leicht
By Dianna Wray
By Aaron Reiss
By Camilo Smith
By Craig Malisow
Thank God He's An Idiot
Child-porn producer pleads guilty
By Richard Connelly
Sure, Joseph Montross is a sick individual — he not only enjoys child pornography, he produces it, and being a sick individual is pretty much a prerequisite for that. But, luckily for the rest of society, Montross is also inutterably stupid.
Or maybe we're judging him too harshly.
Let's say you're a child pornographer. It's probably not something you casually mention to the neighbors over cookies on National Night Out; you're smoother than that.
But you are cursed with ambition. You want to work for the Border Patrol. So you apply for the job, which is a friggin' law-enforcement job. You continue with the hiring process even after you find out it includes a lie-detector test. And then you show up and take the lie-detector test.
You are, indeed, an idiot. Thank God.
Houstonian Montross, 30, failed the lie-detector test. As the U.S. Attorney's office put it: "Montross, who had applied for employment with CBP, had admitted during a pre-employment polygraph examination to possessing child pornography on his home computer."
Hey, so maybe he didn't fail the lie-detector test, since he answered honestly. He just failed the "Are You In-fucking-sane?" test.
The sordid details:
In July, 2008, while reviewing the images and videos found during the forensic analysis, an ICE agent observed videos that contained child pornography and appeared to be made by Montross. Based on this information, federal agents went back to Montross' residence on July 21, 2008, and searched for additional computers and equipment. The majority of the images and videos were found on the external hard drives. Montross admitted to federal agents that he made ten of the videos. Agents seized approximately 9,000 images and 107 videos most of which had been downloaded via the internet. The images included prepubescent females involved with bondage, penetration, oral sex and masturbation.
Montross has been sentenced to 30 years in prison. U.S. Attorney's office spokeswoman Angela Dodge tells Hair Balls that upon his release, he will be subject to court supervision for the rest of his life.
The official statement from the U.S. Attorney's office says "Montross has been ordered to register as a sex offender and will be prohibited from accessing the internet or visiting/attending any place where children under the age of 18 congregate for the duration of his term of supervised release."
It doesn't specifically mention barring him from re-applying for the Border Patrol, but we guess that's a given.
Get Off New Braunfels's Lawn!
By Craig Malisow
If there's one thing that Texans have always prided themselves on, it's love of Big Government — especially The Man telling you where, and with whom, you can live. Or at least that's how some folks in New Braunfels see it.
Spurred by complaints over noise and parking issues, the NB Planning Commission has convened the latest in a series of workshops to reevaluate an ordinance prohibiting more than five unrelated people living in a single-family home. Planning Commission Director Shannon Mattingly says the town is considering allowing no more than three or possibly four unrelated folks in a home. (Media reports say the revised ordinance would only allow people "related by blood," but that's not true; i.e., blended families, foster kids and legal guardianship are all cool).
"Right now, our ordinance allows for five unrelated people in a single-family home, and there have been some residents who have come to Council and come to the Planning Commission asking us to re-look at that and reconsider it," Mattingly told Hair Balls. As part of this, the commission studied the occupancy ordinances of 30 cities in the state; 90 percent allowed four or fewer, and 43 percent allowed three or fewer.
Mattingly recalled one perturbed New Braunfelsite who was upset that five dang college kids living next door always have friends over, and each friend brings a car, jamming up parking in the area. A revised occupancy ordinance might alleviate some of that problem. However, it would still be perfectly legal for one dude living in a house to invite ten people in ten cars over every single day. So we're not really sure why a revised ordinance would make sense: if a neighboring household is making too much noise, the occupants could be cited for a noise violation; why should it matter how many people live there?
Then again, we don't live next to loud college kids with their jazz records and dancing the Charleston till all hours of the night. If so, we might feel differently.
No Pho-king Way
By Richard Connelly
Mai's restaurant, for decades the beacon of light for bleary-eyed clubbers looking for late-night sustenance, burned in a two-alarm fire February 15.
The family has vowed to rebuild, but the blaze struck a chord with many Houstonians. Here's a sample of the comments on the various items we did on the event.