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Top Stories: Former Balch Springs Officer Wants Court Venue Changed; STEM Camp For Girls

The mugshot of fired Balch Springs police officer Roy Oliver after being booked on a murder charge in May 2017 for fatally shooting 15-year-old Jordan Edwards.

The top local stories this morning from KERA News:

Attorneys for a former police officer in Balch Springs accused of killing an unarmed 15 year-old have requested a change of venue for the upcoming trial.

Police say body camera footage of the incident showed Roy Oliver shooting his rifle into a moving vehicle traveling away from him. Jordan Edwards — one of the passengers inside — was killed.

Lawyers for Oliver say pre-trial publicity has affected potential jurors in Dallas County, so their client can't get a fair trial. The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office argues the trial, scheduled to begin August 20, should remain in Dallas.

CBS 11 reports a judge in Dallas could rule on the change of venue request on Tuesday.

In addition to the murder charge for Edwards' death, Oliver's charged with several counts of aggravated assault by a public servant.

Other stories this morning:

  • State prison officials say 10 inmates and prison staff members have been treated for heat-related illnesses since July 20. The Dallas Morning News reports that's one person on average per day since the criminal justice department activated what it called an "incident command center" after temperatures reached record highs across the state earlier this month.

  • Judges have chosen 31 semi-finalists for its annual Big Tex Choice Awards. Among them "Deep Fried Bodacious Bacon Bombs," "Fried Kool-Aid Pickles," "Frosty's Frozen Hot Chocolate" and "Deep Fried M&M's."

  • Here’s the assignment for high school girls in a summertime science, technology, engineering and math camp: dream up an everyday item that’s cheaper and safer to use than what’s out there now, then build it. KERA’s Bill Zeeble stopped by a STEM camp at Southern Methodist University.

You can listen to North Texas stories weekdays at 8:22 a.m. and 6:20 p.m. on KERA 90.1 FM.

Gus Contreras is a digital producer and reporter at KERA News. Gus produces the local All Things Considered segment and reports on a variety of topics from, sports to immigration. He was an intern and production assistant for All Things Considered in Washington D.C.